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Marshall Stern – Struggling with the Juggling | Conversations with Coaches | Boxer Media

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Conversations with Coaches | Boxer Media

Marshall Stern is first and foremost a dedicated husband and father. He values family above all else and places the utmost importance on striking a work/life balance for himself and those he mentors.

Over the past 35 years, Marshall has built multiple small businesses and learned first-hand the challenges most small business owners face. He understands the ups and downs of business ownership and combines this intimate knowledge with his approachable coaching philosophy to develop achievable solutions for those he teaches.

If you had to put a name to what he does (which he might shrug off, as you’ll learn when our conversation turns to labels), Marshall is an Entrepreneur Leadership Coach. Truly, his passion is grounded in helping other small business owners build a business & life of freedom, joy, and prosperity.

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Kevin Stafford 0:02
Hello, everyone, and welcome to another episode of the conversations with Coach’s podcast. I’m your host, Kevin. blessedly quiet around here we were just discussing how a background noise at least in the past used to interfere with things like this. But nowadays technology has become so miraculous that I could probably start a generator right over there, and you wouldn’t hear it. So, blessedly, we’re here and I get to talk to you more, a little bit more. We’ve already been talking for a few minutes with Marshall Stern. With over 30 years of experience in business. Marshall is an entrepreneur leadership coach, who’s passionate about helping other small business owners build a business and the life of freedom, joy, and prosperity. I love the blending that I get. I get to talk about that a lot in the podcast with a lot of coaches, and I feel like you have a good a good degree of experience and speciality and this blending. So, Marshall, I’m really happy to have you here. If you can’t tell. I’ve enjoyed talking with you offline. And I can’t wait to talk to you tomorrow.

Marshall Stern 0:55
No, that’s awesome. Thanks, Kevin’s Great to be here. And as of course you press record, I don’t know if you guys can hear the airplane going overhead. Maybe not.

Kevin Stafford 1:06
I love I love interruption is miraculous, is our capacity to adjust? Well, Marshall, let’s, let’s talk about your superhero origin story. Let’s talk about how you got your start as a coach. Now, it’s kind of tends to be a two part question. Because there’s that maybe moment or period of time where it sort of dawns on you that you either you already have certain attributes that you would you would now call coaching, maybe you didn’t have the word for it at the time, maybe you were doing it and didn’t quite have the role that you have grown into today. So when did you sort of realize that you both were and wanted to be a coach? And then how did you go about going from there into the business you have today?

Marshall Stern 1:45
That’s a good, that’s actually a great question. So I would say their origins, I think I’ve been a coach my entire life. And I didn’t know it. So growing up, you know, I know this. We don’t we don’t have like hours here. But growing up, I was always the mediator, the family, I was always the one helping each other. And communicating and settling things down. I was always called the sort of the state the stable one might air quotes. And then, and then I started business, I had my own business started in 1994, assign a graphics company. And I was always coaching my employees, and not just about their job, and the responsibilities but also their career. And their life, they would always it just came naturally, they always would come to me and I was always open and listening and almost became almost like a therapist for some of them at times when they needed it. And but I didn’t know I didn’t know that that was coaching. I just I was running my business I was being who I am. And then in 2010 2011 follow the person who many of you probably know, John Maxwell was a big leadership, expert Guru, I guess you can call them. And he was watching this program to help to basically train with him and be one of his coaches and trainers and speakers. And I saw it, I listened to it. And it just it was like everything. You know, I saw the light, right, I saw the light, everything was shining down on me. And I knew that that was I still make business. I still do assign business. I knew that was my calling. I couldn’t even interesting, I couldn’t even talk to my wife about it verbally, because I didn’t know how to express myself. So I actually texted her or emailed her what this whole thing was what I want to do. And she came to me and she said, What? What the heck, why are you emailing this to you, emailing you This is it because honestly, it took me so deep, I didn’t know how to verbalize it. I want to go down this path. I don’t know where it’s going to take me. I didn’t know I was gonna be a coach from it. I thought it could just take it into my signing graphics business, and help my people more and be a better coach and leader for them. But I knew I needed to be a leader because the world needed more leaders. And then 10 years later, I’ve still been doing it. And I launched the coaching business mentoring business and I do that for other entrepreneurs or business owners.

Kevin Stafford 4:12
So awesome. I love that you I feel like it’s it’s often this way but I just I love the way and it’s almost ironic I love the way you just described it how it was this thing you couldn’t properly articulate. You just you knew you had to get it out. Of course the first person you want to share it with it’s like I need to tell my wife we need i This is amazing. I don’t even know how and so you you found the best way that you could possibly figure out to do is like this is this is the best way I could say it. And I get the impression from you that you then have spent the rest of your life since then and probably will spend the rest of your life learning the right words. You know, being able to verbalize to articulate so I feel like that’s many coaches do have that in common and I could I could sense it and see it knew already. That ability to not just articulate for yourself but to help other people find those words to define what they may be on some level or in some way already know or feel or are seeking. And then getting those words you sort of begin to go on that journey, the moment you begin to have some form of words and begin to shape, that expression, your journey towards where you want to go, who you want to be, begins probably doesn’t begin, but it goes to another another level, I might say, because like you said, do kind of begins all the way at the beginning, like you’ve been a coach your whole life, you typically are who you are your whole life, it’s just this long process of discovery. And I’m getting a little poetic and schmoopy about it. But I find I’m quite taken with the whole process. It’s just it’s so for, for lack of a better word, magical.

Marshall Stern 5:36
Yeah, it is. And, you know, I know a lot of coaches are kind of come from it from the corporate side. And they were, they had corporate burnout, they’re tired of corporate, and they knew they could make a difference. We all want to make a difference. I didn’t come from corporate I came from small business. And, but yeah, I’ve been I’ve been a coach my whole life. Like, it’s, it’s just, it’s who I am. It comes natural to me. I learned I’ve had to learn to be a better listener, than a talker, like a consultant, because that’s the way it used to be, you know, I want to be the fixer. Just fix it. Here’s what you do. And as a coach, that doesn’t serve your clients. At times, you might need to go that down there. But overall, you have to listen and help them get it get the solutions out for themselves, so that they’re more prone to do it. Because if you just tell them what to do, and I’ve had consultants, I’ve had coaches who thinks their coaches or consultants, they’ve told me when

Kevin Stafford 6:35
I do like that, I feel like getting that distinction across to people between coaching and consulting, I like that’s a good way to put it. Because as a consultant, you are the fixer, you’re almost like a contractor. It’s like, my plumbing is busted, I need you to come and fix it and tell us how to then keep this from happening in the future, you know, and a coach is more like, you know, you’re going to take a class, you’re going to find a teacher, maybe even a mentor or something like that, which is also a little bit of a different journey. And they’re going to kind of tell you a little bit about it or bigger, mostly listen, they’re going to find out what’s really going on maybe what the root causes of things are, whether it’s a problem in search of a solution, or just a destination in search of a map, you know, and a lot more listening going on there, there’s still no solution is the right word, there still is a destination kind of in mind when someone seeks out a coach or a consultant. But it really is, especially with coaching, and it seems much more about the journey. And that sort of guidance, you know, where it’s like, not going to climb the mountain for you, but I’ll be your Sherpa, you know, I’ve been I’ve been up and down this road before I could sell it you haven’t or maybe you have you got last the last time. Let me show you where to step and where not to step. And let me listen to where you step before. So I can make sure you know that I tell you the right way to go. It’s all i i love the the analogies of bounce for this kind of stuff. I really do love it. For sure. So you obviously it is true of a lot of coaches too, you tend to focus your coaching business on sort of where you come from. And I like that you lay it. Like I feel like there’s a strong I don’t wanna say minority. But there’s a strong segment of the coaching business that is specific to where you come from small business entrepreneur. And there are a lot of special unique needs there for a lot of people who need guidance, because I mean, as you know, a small business owner, it can be, you can feel like you are out there all alone, and figuring things out on your own with no one really to turn to for guidance or help or assistance. So let’s talk about your present coaching business and who you focus on helping and serving and how you do so like I know one to one is something you do group coaching masterminds. There’s many methods to the madness, so to speak. So yeah, talk about who you coach and how you coach them today.

Marshall Stern 8:35
Another good question. So I coach. It’s funny because everyone and all the coaches, all the coaches have coaches coaches, there’s more coaches, coaching coaches than coaches coaching other people, all the coaching X. Other country experts say to niche down and pick a niche in bikinis. And so I guess I kind of have a niche, but it’s a little bit broad I, I coach entrepreneurs, entrepreneurial business owners, they’ve been in business, usually three for at least three or four years. They’re either solopreneur or they might have a very small team of three or four people across all industries. Ironically, I’ve been in a service and manufacturing based business for last 20 years. But most of my clients are service based, which is kind of ironic, because I’ve been more on the manufacturing, design and manufacturing but still service. And I would say probably 80% of them are women entrepreneurs. Usually moms and was other how do i It’s really all about so my coaching is a concept of a three prong approach coaching, mentoring and teaching. I refer to myself, so people say I’m a business coach. I don’t think businesses need coaches. I think business owners do. So I’m more of a coach for business owners or entrepreneurs or whatever. I’m not into labels. Real, but really, I’m a leadership coach in disguise. And what I mean by that is that that’s where I got my certification came from on the leadership side with John Maxwell 10 years ago or 11 years ago now. I think us as business owners, we get to we struggle with focus with consistency with just all like you mentioned earlier, we’re all alone. So my coaching really is all about helping them become almost like a self leader for themselves first than the leader of their business become more focused, more intentional and more consistent, more intentional with their time, and more consistent and accountable. Which coach, Coach credibility coaches,

Kevin Stafford 10:45
right. Yeah, it’s funny my of course, because I’m thinking in analogies a lot today, as you can probably tell you, I love that phrase, leadership coach in disguise, because in my head, all of a sudden, this trojan horse appeared, where it’s like, you know, you’re not gonna, you might not call it leadership when we first meet. And when you decide that we’re going to, we’re going to, you know, I’m going to coach you, and we’re going to see if we can help each other and see if we can serve each other. You might not think what you want, or what you’re needing is leadership coaching, but it is, and we’re gonna get there. But for me to get into the door, I’m going to Trojan horse, you can you can call me a business coach or a business owner coach or an entrepreneur coach, or whatever you want to call me, you can call me because I like this too, like that you struggled to know what to call who you were and ended up arriving a coach. Because ultimately, the labels can be helpful, but as long as they don’t get in the way. And as long as you remember what you’re really there for, and I just I love I love that approach. Again, it’s, it’s it springs, right from your origin story, which is, of course, the way things usually work. So I love that I have this trojan horse leadership coach in my head now, you sneaking into the city under other pretenses because you know what’s really, in what’s really going to help and that’s leader coaching and starting with leading yourself which, yeah, that’s the game, isn’t it? Well, it is, if

Marshall Stern 11:54
I call myself leadership, coach people, you know, small business owners won’t will resonate with that, because they don’t think they need leadership coaching. They Exactly. They don’t even think about that they think leaders have for like big corporations and governments, although the governments and corporations need. You know, there’s not that kind of podcast.

Kevin Stafford 12:13
Nor do we have that much time.

Marshall Stern 12:17
Exactly. But it really does come down. As John John Maxwell always says, Everything rises, rises and falls on leadership, and really does. And just as our own coach for all your listeners are, as a coach, you need to be a self leader, you need to be able to lead your own business. And, and also lead your clients.

Kevin Stafford 12:39
I want to greedily keep you for another couple of hours and just make a whole make like six or seven podcast episodes. But I’m going to tell you right now, I am going to reach out to you at some point in not too distant future and out and ask for you to come back for a part two. And then this will we’ll pick a topic, we I’ve been doing this a little more with some of my coaches who’ve become more like as much friends as people who I’ve interviewed on a podcast, and Mandy, I just want to talk to you about leadership and and your judgment as your journey but who you help and how you help these days. But we’re already coming up on the usual time limit for this podcast, try to keep it short and sweet. So you can you know, do the dishes with an episode or go for a run with an episode a short one. But um, before we go, please, please please tell our audience where to go. It’s another one of those two part questions where they can find out more about you and your coaching business and also where they might best connect with you. Like if you have a preferred method for people to reach out if you have like a free strategy call or if you’d like to connect on LinkedIn and get to know people there. So where people find out more about you and connect with you.

Marshall Stern 13:38
Oh, perfect. Yeah, so easiest way well, so the regular channels but Marshall And they like two L’s Marshall Because someone took talking to him, but he’s he’s got it as Marshall sterndrive that you can book a call, I love meeting just other coaches. Because we need to do we need to work together and help each other and support each other collaborate. So there’s always abrasion opportunities. And LinkedIn, you can find me on LinkedIn for sure. I think just Marshall starting on LinkedIn. And you’re also more I have a Facebook group called the Business inner circle. So you can reach me there or join and participate. And

Kevin Stafford 14:19
that’s excellent. Yeah, I’ll have to. I’ll have you send me that link so I can get into the show notes so people can can submit to join and check it out. Okay, I’m, again, I’m feeling that that greedy desire to ask you other follow up questions as my brain continues to spin off in interesting directions. So I am going to hassle you for part two. But for now, I’m just really grateful to talk with you today. It was it’s been great. So thanks for being here. And thanks for sharing.

Marshall Stern 14:44
I appreciate it. Kevin. Thanks for the opportunity. I’d love to appreciate it.

Kevin Stafford 14:48
And to the audience out there. Do yourself a favor Marshalls. He’s great. We just barely scratched the surface. I just barely scratched the surface. So if you’re feeling even as remotely greedy as I am, reach out, find out more connect with him. And we will talk to you again soon.

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