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10 Aug, 2010

Trainer In The Spotlight: Mike Blissett

Posted by: The Coaching Academy In: Coach Spotlight|In The Spotlight|Personal Success|Success Stories

As a sought after speaker and workshop facilitator, Mike Blissett has worked in the UK and Europe, and has also helped train thousands of new coaches in his position as trainer with The Coaching Academy. His unique style, wit and intuitive knowledge of the human psyche has helped many hundreds of people develop better ways of working together, as well as living a more fulfilling life themselves.

 Mike shares his top 5 Coaching Questions:-

If you want to attract more clients, I recommend:

Meet as many people in the area you want to coach in as possible. Network, join groups and organisations, take part in forums, debates, accept invitations to presentations, and be proactive with any online marketing and social media you’re interested in. Two great nuggets of advice I was given several years ago and by which I run my business are:

1. ‘People buy people before they buy products and services.’ This means, at some level and to a certain degree, future potential clients need to ‘get’ who you are first before they buy coaching. You can build your profile up face-to-face, or via a regular newsletter or Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Linked-In, and all the other amazing online tools out there nowadays.

2. ‘People buy from people they know, like and trust’ – and it’s the last point, ‘trust’ that can take a while, which is why being a regular networker, attender of events, speaker, or social media writer can make such a difference. Simply, when people get to know you or your articles, when they need a coach they’ll automatically think of you rather than search the internet for other coaches they don’t yet know.

My best advice for marketing your coaching business is:

As above, and also sooner rather than later devise your own marketing strategy/plan. Many businesses have a business plan, though far fewer think about marketing as an on-going development area for growing their business. The more you diarize and book appointments with yourself to update your Blog, website, newsletter, send out those letters of introduction, follow-up on emails and phone calls the better results you’ll see. Planning and running your coaching practice as an efficient, well-oiled business is as important as having great coaching skills and working with clients to get great results.  

People probably don’t know that:

I used to play the trombone at Music College and in an orchestra.

My favourite self-development book is:

There are thousands, though the two that changed my life at the right time were:

  • ‘Take Charge of Your Life’ by Louis Proto, 1988. Living in Lincolnshire, working full time and singing in a band, I read this book and three weeks later moved to London ready to begin building the life I really wanted.
  • ‘Be Your Own Life Coach’ by Fiona Harrold, 2001. In January 2003 I read this book, and 3 weeks later at the beginning of February was sat in my first Coaching Academy Certificate training weekend having decided to be a coach. Fiona’s style is no-nonsense and directive, and I am very much a non-directive coach – though most importantly, her book showed me a light, it sparked my imagination and got me moving in the right direction. Fiona became a good personal friend, and I’m so grateful her book shouted, ‘buy me, buy me’ that day in the bookshop.

The most inspiring speaker I have ever heard is:

Topher Morrison – he’s a brilliant motivational speaker, and also happened to be my trainer in Clinical Hypnotherapy and Sport Hypnosis. I find him authentic, fun, full of life and totally absorbing to listen to. His thirst for life is infectious.  

If I was alone on a desert island, I would need to have (three luxuries that don’t include family members, pets or friends) with me:

1. My iPhone – not just for the phone, internet, diary etc., but also the apps – especially Scrabble, which I play every time I’m on the tube in London. As someone who used to be bottom of the class and get maybe 1 or even zero out of ten for spelling tests at primary school, I’ve come a long way and have currently won 88% of all scrabble games played against the computer on my iPhone (171 games and counting) – I’m so proud!

2. Books, all types of books. I got out of the habit for several years, until last year included ‘must read an hour a day’ on my wheel of life. I alternate personal development books and thrillers, and yesterday bought Dan Brown’s ‘The Lost Symbol’ before training on the Certificate in Personal Coaching event in Brighton.

3. My Sony Vaio laptop. I love to write, Blog, Twitter, add articles for my website, watch movies (including the brilliant ‘Invictus’ on the train to Manchester a few weeks ago). PS: Are power sockets and the internet included as ‘standard’, or would they be listed as 2 extra ‘luxuries’ on the Island? I think I need to see the Desert Island contract before I sign…

My favourite place in the world is:

New York – they don’t say it twice by coincidence, it’s required…and it is THAT good. I have distant family there, some good friends, loads of happy memories (and some I’d sooner forget). A truly special place.

The most unusual thing I have ever done is:

Taken part in an observed coaching session with a 15th century street urchin in full tatty close, no shoes and dirty face garb (him, not me), as part of a Royal Shakespeare Company season by Spanish playwright Cervantes that had been translated into old Shakespeare style English. People paid to sit in the auditorium and listen to our encounter on stage. Originally I was invited to Stratford-upon-Avon to do this, and then a few months later when the season transferred to London was asked to repeat the exercise. It was unscripted, slightly scary, loads of fun, and the actors that played the part of the street urchin where very generous and supportive working with me. Phew!

My definition of success is:

Being able to do what we love to do, and to be successful enough so that it enables us to carry on doing it. I call that ‘being blessed’.

The thing I most love about coaching is:

The people. Maybe it’s a bit of a cliché, but everyone is different and has a unique connection with the world. No two clients are alike. For me, it keeps coaching fresh, exciting, cutting edge, and ever evolving. Plus, at the end of the process to hear a client say, ‘thank you, this/you made a difference’ is the bit that’s worth more than money. So, just to say again, in one word; people.

5 Responses to "Trainer In The Spotlight: Mike Blissett"

1 | Carolyn Trafford

August 10th, 2010 at 6:47 pm

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I enjoyed reading this. The marketing stuff to do with blogs, Facebook, etc is what I’m trying to do at the moment – its hard work, but I’m hoping it will pay off.

2 | Margaret Hazle

August 11th, 2010 at 10:30 am

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Whilst you are ‘being blessed’ by others you were also inspiratonal in bringing my husband and I into Coaching from a two-day coaching taster in Manchester back in March 2009! We were blessed by your insight that day so it is lovely to catch up on your news and views again now.
Wishing you every blessing in the days ahead – you definitely DO make a difference because of who you are and the way you do it!
Kind Regards

3 | Malcolm Lugton

August 12th, 2010 at 4:34 pm

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Hi Mike, thanks for sharing your blessings!! I fully agree with your recommendations about “selling yourself”… I was told many (too many!) years ago: “if you cannot sell yourself, how can you hope to sell your services?”

Looking forward to catching up with you on an accelerator day – Will be wearing another of those “fantastic shirts”..

Regards, Malcolm (who you dubbed:”the Coach with the Shirt”)..

4 | Mhairi Gordon

August 17th, 2010 at 11:58 am

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Funny & informative – just like your good self!

5 | Emma Ormerod

February 28th, 2011 at 4:22 pm

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Having just attending a 2 day seminar in Manchester, I found you so inspirational and informative – your words really made sense and lit the fire! Thank you…will hopefully be training with The Coaching Academy in the near future!

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