Coaching the Coach: Local Business Owner Finds Her Niche

Tammy Y. Allen, Director, Marketing & Programs, The NIIC

Even coaches need coaches. It was the time and attention from The NIIC staff that helped Theresa Steele, Founder, Steele Business Coaching, take her business to the next level. Today, she uses a set of simple concepts and practical tools to help entrepreneurs get what they want from their businesses.

It took some work and time to get her business to where it is now. Theresa was introduced to The NIIC about six years ago, through a friend who had an office there. The NIIC President and CEO Karl LaPan provided her with subsidized office space and one-on-one business advising. It was through that relationship that she connected with Entrepreneur-in-Residence and Business Coach Mike Fritsch.

That was the navigation of her start-up journey. Fritsch provided expertise in areas like lean startup and lean canvas, customer discovery, product-market fit and business model design. “He asked thought-provoking questions, which led to me pursuing a couple of pivots.”

For example, going into the coaching relationship, she wanted to work with businesses in some capacity related to improving efficiency. Initially, she considered providing project management training. Fritsch challenged her to look at her business from different angles to identify her niche and build confidence.

With regard to project management, Theresa said, “I didn’t really think I had something different or better to offer.” After all, there were plenty of companies that offered PMP (project management professional) training and boot camps. It turns out she did have something to offer, and the demand was there too. Her strengths lie in strategy, processes, and systems—skills that businesses need and often lack. And she could offer these services through a coaching model.

According to Theresa, this type of relationship can benefit businesses because of the element of objectivity. “A coach can help you take a step back and see what you don’t see,” she said. Business owners or managers are often too close to the situation and operate in the present, focusing on extinguishing daily fires. Theresa offers an outside perspective and the knowledge and expertise to help small to mid-sized businesses break through plateaus. She employs the Entrepreneurial Operating System® (EOS®) to encourage focus, discipline, and accountability across teams. Through this system, she empowers companies across all industries to perform like world-class organizations.

She helps them look at the big picture and their future goals while also digging in to identify the root cause of their issues. Then, together they work out an action plan to achieve those goals and resolve those issues.

As for Theresa’s vision for her company—she wants to add staff and expand her geographic reach beyond Allen County.

Theresa is a great example of what can happen when you Assess. Discover. Do.™ at The NIIC. Keep dreaming big!

You can follow Theresa’s lead by bringing a new idea to life by visiting TheNIIC.Org or calling 260-407-6442. For more information about Steele Business Coaching, visit http://steelebc.com or call (260) 750-7050.


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