When you have a tiny seedling of a business idea, but gaps in your experience or know-how; or you have a business that isn’t getting off the ground as easily as you hoped, you need someone with the skills to build your confidence and give just the right sort of guidance. Enter Basmah Osman, Life and Business Coach, here to help you get on track.
What can you tell us about the services you provide?
I work as an organizational development advisor and also more recently as a life and business coach. In both roles, I work with leaders/individuals as a facilitator of change. With my client, we evaluate the situation, identify the desired vision and challenges, and determine what steps are needed. If there are knowledge or function gaps that fall in my areas of 20+ years of management and startup expertise, I serve to bridge them. It’s worth mentioning that I’ve also gained a lot of knowledge on governance, gender and youth issues related to sustainable development.
What differentiates a life coach and a business coach exactly?
A life coach is a trained professional who guides and challenges you through a thought-provoking process by asking questions and using tools. This process uncovers blind spots and creates the awareness needed for better decision-making. When you’ve clearly evaluated the aspects involved in a challenge, you can be confident in your decisions and the actions needed for change. Along the way, I play the role motivator or “cheerleader,” as well as, the roles of strategist and accountability partner.
As a life coach, I don’t give advice. But as a business coach, I offer my business expertise to the client and also work with others in the organization.
How does that tie into your work as an advisor?
I don’t join an organization as an expert with a preset toolbox. I join with an exploratory mindset, with curiosity. I explore and observe from an external, holistic viewpoint. My professional experiences, of course, gives me the structured approach and intuition to identify problem areas and what may be needed to address them. But I found combining the competencies of an advisor with a coach, and approaching challenges as a coach has proven to obtain more positive, long-lasting changes.
Why are the results more positive?
Whether I am coaching clients on a challenge related to their personal or professional lives or related to their business, I position myself as a partner whose only goal is to maximize their potential to achieve what they want. I pay attention to the “human element” – the client himself/herself – their perceptions and attitudes that are very much in the core of their challenges. I believe if we don’t create awareness to shift the mindset of our clients and instead, focus on solving the problem, this is not a true remedy. It’s an aspirin or temporary relief. That’s why successful change management efforts focus on the people themselves.
Lastly, the commitment of the client is a prerequisite for change and in this partnership, the client has responsibilities for creating results. They are partners throughout the process, together exploring possible paths, designing objectives and strategies, followed by committing to actions. As a facilitator, my role includes challenging them with accountability while extending my resources. But the true expert on my client’s life, career, or business is the client himself/ herself. What is suitable, realistic, feasible, and truly sustainable has to be co-created with the client. And that is the secret ingredient to achieving positive results with longer-term impact.
Do you tailor your service to meet each client’s requirements?
Yes, very much. I evaluate their needs and advise them exactly how I can support them. If they need technical expertise beyond my scope, I try to refer them to experts.
As a life coach, my clients request sessions as often as they want. I don’t follow up. As a business coach, a time frame is agreed upon and expectations are detailed.
How would you categorize your clients?
Anyone who feels a gap between where they are and where they want to be, professionally, personally, or in their business. I serve companies, women and men, as well as youth. When it comes to youth, I can take a mentor role and feel it’s my community payback.
Personally, I only categorize clients as either committed to empowering themselves to create desired change, or looking for quick fixes or others to plug-in solutions.
What do you consider are the most important factors in creating a successful business or project?
Leaders have a vision of the bigger picture, and are able to keep their strategic focus while guiding the smaller picture. This is the cornerstone of better decision-making.
Not enough businesses take the time to challenge their perspectives and brainstorm to get this clarity, then write down strategic plans to make sure what they want, where they want to go, how they will get there is clear to everyone. There is a saying “An idiot with a plan can beat a genius without a plan.” I consider good planning like turning on the highway lights to drive easier and safer at night.
The importance of transparency and accountability in creating a healthy working environment that retains good employees and improves business is often overlooked.
Lastly, studies show the benefits good mentors can have on entrepreneurs, and coaches can offer to even CEOs of multinationals. That’s why coaching is a fast growing service globally. The process of finding the right match, or chemistry, between you and a coach/mentor is often what takes some time in trials.
What are the common mistakes that people make?
Believing their perceptions of reality or situation are facts carved in stone. Not realizing their mindsets play critical roles in their success and can be shifted. These individuals don’t realize the potential that can be unleashed when exercising their willpower for change.
Facebook Page: Basmah Osman – B Life Coach
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