Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in business development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Corinna Hagen, Owner of Coachilly, located in Dallas, TX, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

I own two businesses. Coachilly is a free online coaching magazine covering coaching technology and business topics for coaches of various niches (executive coaches, career coaches, life coaches, health coaches, etc.). We cover most intensively the technology used to build coaching businesses for those who are less experienced in starting and operationalizing a business.

Tell us about yourself

I started Coachilly out of love for technology and after having built my own successful coaching practice. I have spent nearly two decades in management consulting, helping well-known companies to grow using backend technology to run their operations smoothly, lowering operational costs and overhead.

Coaches can do the same - they can employ tools and strategies to help them look like the 'big guys' without breaking the bank. The barriers to entry are lower than ever, but it is astounding how few people know about what's available.

What motivates me to keep doing this kind of work is that innovation never stops. I get to help other coaches to collaborate rather than compete. The coaching industry is incredibly caring and continues to grow at a fast rate as organizations realize the transformational power of coaching and drive awareness to the larger population.

Helping coaches not only set up a business to land a client here and there - but to help them scale is incredibly satisfying. Winning together is an experience that I believe also drives other coaches to help clients - it is fulfilling to serve and enjoy/witness the growth together.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

  • Not giving up when the going gets bumpy and figuring out a way around it.
  • Every single success story of a client is our accomplishment, too.
  • The ability to employ other people.
  • What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Persevering through the storms.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Plan for a long, bumpy ride → adjust your mindset for sacrifice, endurance, and service before planning your weekends and vacation.
  2. Prepare your runway → to make a realistic assessment of the cost it takes to build and the cost to cover your bills. How much time will you have?
  3. Place your bets carefully. Don't skimp in areas you aren't strong in. Hire experts in carefully selected areas - unless you have a ton of "experience money" to dish out.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

Don't do it alone. Coaches are incredibly caring but also the most hesitant to admit they are not experts in everything. We have seen great coaches shut their business down less than two years in because they wanted to build it all with their own hands and underestimated what it takes.

This is a tragedy because the world needs more excellent coaches - and coaching excellence doesn't equal business experience. Similar to being an excellent dentist doesn't make one excellent at running a dental office (operations) or attracting a lot of clients (marketing). Focus on what you do well (and need to do well) and carefully select the help in areas you feel like you need to "figure out" or already know you are lacking.

Where can people find you and your business?



If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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