Many people imagine corporate offices and big companies when they hear the words “business consultant.” While there is a large corporate world of consulting not far from that, many business consultants are committed to serving locally-owned businesses. Even more surprising, there is a market for business consultants who exclusively serve martial arts schools; we’ll refer to them as “business coaches” in this post. In our Third Annual Martial Arts Benchmark Report, we reported that 26% of Champions* use some type of business coach to help their martial arts school.

Let’s look at the key questions you should be answering while considering whether to hire a business coach for your martial arts school.

What do business coaches do for martial arts businesses?

Business coaches in the martial arts industry can be full-service or specialize in a specific business function. Most of them are typically focused on the big picture though, improving total school operations. Kovar Systems, as an example, describes their mission as “to enable school operators to improve all aspects of school operation.” Their approach focuses on integrity-based coaching, community resources and three main areas: student acquisition, student retention and staff development. This holistic approach to business growth, management and student experience is what makes consulting in the martial arts industry unique.

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Why would a martial arts business choose to hire a business coach?

No martial arts business is the same and reasons for hiring a business coach vary. With that said, the main selling points for a martial arts school to choose business coaching are time and money. That is, will this service save you valuable time and money, and will it help you generate more money? For a rapid-growth martial arts school, hiring a business coach to help streamline important aspects of your operations can be much more affordable and effective than hiring a full-time general manager. Martial arts school owners who want to grow their business, effectively lead their team, improve their entire community’s experience and build the career of their dreams are likely candidates for business coaching services at some point.

What factors should you consider when selecting a business coach?

Business Coaching for Martial Arts SchoolsWhile this isn’t the case for every type of business consultant, we believe martial arts businesses should consider business coaches who have operated successful martial arts schools themselves. Domain expertise, like digital marketing or technology thought leaders, is one thing. But, when we’re talking about day-to-day operations of a successful martial arts business, it is likely best to hire a coach who has been there. Kovar Systems, who we previously mentioned as an example, was launched from a renowned multi-location martial arts business founded by Hanshi Dave Kovar, Kovar’s Satori Academy. Mr. Kovar is known worldwide as the “Teacher of Teachers.” His bio goes on, “An 8th degree Black Belt and still growing, he has dedicated his life to the martial arts, earning Black Belt ranks in 10 unique martial art styles, with a majority of those as advanced ranks.” With business coaching services like this, you not only get a rare leader like Hanshi Dave Kovar, you also get his entire team of business coaches who have also led operations for martial arts schools. Beyond their experience, the obvious factors to consider are pricing, availability of the business coaches and whether they align with your vision for the business. Ultimately, you want to find the best business coach and the best overall value for your martial arts community.

*Champions is how Zen Planner defines the most profitable businesses in the Martial Arts Benchmark Report, generating $7,000 or more in monthly profits.


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