How to Afford Coaching and Other Professional Development Tools (as an entrepreneur)

I believe in paying for tools to develop my professional and personal growth. In the past 3 years I've spent around $3500 on the following tools: webinars, coaching, conferences, and business related tools.  One of the trickiest internal conversations an entrepreneur has with themselves is when it's time to invest in courses and how to pay for it. This is even trickier when you're a fairly new entrepreneur and you're not bringing in a ton of cash.  

In the industry that I'm in there are a number of high end coaches who work with limited numbers of clients and work hard with those clients so that they can get results. These coaches are charging thousands of dollars and people are paying the big bucks to work with them.

And, that's ok.

But, I am very, very uncomfortable with the idea that coaches are intentionally or unintentionally putting their clients in the position to go into debt in order to get results that aren't guaranteed. Here are some tools that you can use to manage those moments when you get sucked into the"siren's call"  of purchasing products that may be useful but aren't really in your budget. 

Set a Yearly Budget

For professional training. If you have a set amount of money that you're willing to spend for the year on coaching and tools that financial boundary will help you better evaluate which tools you will use. For example: if you want to be a speaker and you find yourself wanting to purchase a speaker's course, a blogging course, and a productivity tool-it's obvious that the priority would be the speaker's course. Once you set your budget open up a professional training bank account and either add the total amount that you've budgeted for the year or add as much as you each month. 

Monthly Subscriptions

It is becoming more and more common for people to offer a monthly subscription allowing people continued access to the tools and services that they are offering. Some subscriptions are as little as $10 a month to several hundred a month. The great thing about monthly subscriptions is that you can work on affording the monthly amount and for people working hard and needing a little more guidance and information these are great inexpensive tools to grow your own business and professional arsenal of tools. 

Please note: if you are purchasing a course typically you will pay a little more as a monthly subscriber vs. pain in full. 

Pay in Full

If you have the cash on you and it doesn't hurt your bottomline AND you plan on working your buns off to get results-pay in full. You will typically pay less than if you are on a payment plan for an item. There is nothing like paying for something and just owning it free and clear. 

Side Hustles

This is one of my favorite ways to pay for things. Sometimes you just have to put some time, blood, sweat, and tears into getting the money together to purchase a course or tool that you need. There are tons of side hustles that you can do:

  • Brand Ambassador-Click this LINK to my other blog to find out the ins and outs of becoming a brand ambassador. Typically amount paid an hour-$14 and up. I've typically been paid $20-$22 an hour as a brand ambassador.

 

  • Freelance Writer-If you enjoy writing start sending some pitches out to businesses that seem to need help. It does take a little time and research but there are an endless number of websites or hardcopy publications that need content. 

 

  • Yard Work-It's springtime almost summer. See who needs help with their yard. Charge by the job-not by the hour and make the yard look gorgeous :)

Cancel Stuff

You know, all of the tools and subscriptions you're not using. At the end of last year I evaluated the tools that I was using and discovered that there was one that I NEVER used...and had paid $400 for the year. I canceled that one and that money went towards a tool that I actually use. 

Don't Be Bullied 

Into spending money on tools that you can't afford. If you have coaches/thought leaders, etc. guilting you into making a purchase that's going to hurt you financially-they aren't there for you...they are in it for themselves. Period. Work with people who have your best interests in mind. 

Dream big, work hard,

Michelle

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