The two predominant models for consultants and business coaches are what I call wide and thin or narrow and deep. In the wide and thin model, the consultant or coach works with many clients and has weekly or bi-weekly coaching conversations (usually about an hour in length). The second model calls for fewer clients where the consultant can go deeper in the firm’s strategies and operations. I prefer the narrow and deep model because I can help companies grow and get unstuck if I have a deeper knowledge of the business. As a result, I have fewer clients (usually less than 10) and meet with the leadership team frequently (usually an annual, quarterly and monthly cadence).
In the book, Business Model Generation, by Alex Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur there are 9 building blocks required for a business model. Here are mine:
1. Customer Segments business owners of small and medium-sized businesses with a desire to learn. They are often members of YPO (Young President Organization) and EO (Entrepreneurs Organization). I have two geographic segments: customers who are within a 3-hour drive and others who are within a short plane ride.
2. Customer Relationships these are narrow and deep relationships as described above. As a result, I like to structure my client relationships with an annual agreement.
3. Channels how do I come in contact with business owners who are interested in my services? Usually, it’s through referrals from current and former clients. A second channel is through content. My book, Unstuck, this website and my email newsletter are all good ways to find out more.
4. Revenue Streams almost all of my revenue comes from MRR (monthly recurring revenue). As mentioned, I like to have annual agreements with my clients. The annual investment for consulting is divided into 12 equal monthly payments.
5. Value Propositions I will get your company Unstuck guaranteed. See my Brand Promise and How I’m Different.
6. Key Activities There are 3 key activities in my business model: 1) content development books, email newsetter, blog, etc. 2) public speaking, lunch and learns, 1-day workshops and 3) Strategic planning workshops – 1 and 2-day offsite events.
7. Key Resources I use my own content as a resource as well as those of other business and thought leaders. .
8. Key Partners Here are the organizations that I have relationships with or have used in client engagements: 1) Gazelles, Inc., 2) Topgrading, Inc. 3) Entrepreneurs Organization (local sponsorship), 4) Yorkshire Publishing (book publisher) and 5) Intelligent Conversations (sales consulting).
9. Cost Structure Since my business model is narrow and deep, it doesn’t require much of a cost structure. I happily work from my home office at the lake. My major investments are licensing and developing content.