In any business, it’s a challenge to get a sense of perspective about how well you’re doing – as a company, and as an individual.

 For a start-up, it’s even more tricky. It’s unlikely any of normal structures of a big enterprise will be in place – no HR, no IT infrastructure, no “system” for booking travel, taking holidays, buying stationary or finding a meeting room.

This can feel liberating and is sometimes part of the reason why a person chooses the start-up over joining an existing enterprise.

But it also means there’s a risk of re-inventing the wheel each time you set up a way of buying paper for the printer – and there’s also a big danger that you will not give yourself time to reflect, assess how well you’re doing, spend time working how you could do better, and look honestly about how satisfied and happy you are with what you’re trying to achieve.

We’re not going to give you answers about procurement of A4 office supplies. But at WeCoachYouGrow we can give you that vital ingredient: time to reflect, take stock and work out how you as a person and you as a company could be doing even better.

In coaching we have a wide variety of techniques to be of service to the client. One of the most powerful is what we call “holding up the mirror”. In a coaching session, you have a confidential space to hear yourself think. As coaches we will often reflect back what you have just said – sometimes by literally repeating back words or phrases, other times more subtly. Clients often find this revelatory. Perhaps they have never said these things out loud. Perhaps they have never considered the effect these words have on others. Almost certainly they have never had the time to assess what it means to them and the business.

Try it in your next meeting: repeat back what you think is a key phrase or sentence the other person has just articulated – with no preamble or dressing around it, but perhaps with a hint of a question in your voice. You will be surprised by the effect. Now imagine that in a space with plenty of time to explore it and work out what it means.

This is the power of holding up the mirror.