The CoachAccountable Blog

Master CoachAccountable and become the best dang coach you can be. Also, news.

Different Offers, Different Clients, Different Currencies

For the longest time in CoachAccountable, choosing the currency in which you did business with your clients (for invoices, Offerings, and Engagements) was a one-and-done, set it and forget it kind of thing.

This simple model of one-currency-per-account has worked just fine for over 99% of our customers: most everyone using CoachAccountable to bill for their services only needed to do so in exactly one currency across the board.

But as we get to serving more and more folks, particularly larger organizations with an international base of customers, they “hey I need to bill some folks in X and others in Y” sentiment has become more prevalent.

The time has come for CoachAccountable to support billing in multiple currencies, and so this is now a thing.  Let’s check it out!

Setting up to Transact in Multiple Currencies

It all starts with choosing the currencies you plan to invoice in.  This, as always, is found in the Client Invoicing Config.  You’ve got the usual drop down menu to pick which currency you’re invoicing in, and there’s now a little extra link, “Actually, we bill in several currencies…”

I like to keep the UI conversational.

Click that, and you’re able to choose whichever are relevant to your business:

Need to invoice in something that’s not here? Let us know.

Using the Right Currency

Because invoicing in multiple currencies is such a niche feature, I thought it essential to not clutter up the UI in any place for the majority for whom a single currency suffices.

Accordingly, the ability to choose multiple currencies is tucked away behind that link.  But more importantly, when you choose more than one, only then will you find the option to specify currency (from among those chosen) in certain other places: for given clients, Offerings, and Engagements.

You can set the preferred invoicing currency for a given client by finding them in the My Clients listing and clicking on their gear icon.  In the “Manage Client” pop up that appears, you’ll find the setting under Settings >> Preferences:

Presumably this won’t change much once first set… but it’s easy to update if it does!

Once set for a client, all invoices you manually create for that client will be in their preferred currency.

When setting the price for your Offerings, IF you have your account configured for multiple currencies you’ll see a little link by which to set the currency for that price.  Click it, and the menu to choose will appear.

Choose currency for an Offering

You might make two sets of Offerings, one for each currency you’ll be selling in.

Setting the currency for the invoices of an Engagement and Engagement Template works the same way: if you’re configured to transact in more than one currency, you’ll find the place to choose which one.

Note that the currency set for an Offering or Engagement takes precedence over the currency set for a client: if a client is set for GB pounds, for example, but is enrolled into an Engagement which entails invoicing in euros, those engagement invoices will be issued in euros.

Also note the presence of “$USD” in above example: the system won’t ALWAYS clutter up the display with those 3-letter currency codes, but if a currency you’ve chosen could be one of several that use the same symbol (in this case, “$” which could refer to US or Canadian dollars), CA will automatically adjust the display in order to disambiguate.

Different Offerings for Different Markets

If you have customers in different countries who are to be charged in different currencies, you might make multiple sets of Offerings (and/or Engagements), each one priced appropriately for their respective market and currency.  You can do this quickly by setting up an Offering (or Engagement) in one currency, and making a clone that varies only in pricing.

From there it’s up to you to make available the correct set of Offerings to the right people.  You might, for example, create two Offering Bundles, one that you present to Canadian customers and another for those in the US.

Currencies and Your Payment Processor for Online Payments

If you’re set up to accept payments from your customers online (via your chosen payment processor, Square or Stripe), the currencies that you’re able to accept those payments in is a matter between you, your payment processor, and your bank.  So be certain that the currencies you pick are actually ones you can accept payments in!

If you’re not processing payments online, then you’re free to choose whichever currencies you like (as you’ll be manually recording payments that have been received by some other channel).

Reporting in Multiple Currencies

It’s nice to see the sum total of invoicing action in your account, and CoachAccountable offers plenty of places to do that.  Having multiple currencies amid your business transactions makes totaling up the numbers a little hairier, but not insurmountably so.  CA handles this by listing items all together, but showing currency-specific totals broken out at the bottom:

See totals for invoicing broken down by currency.

This should do fine for your bookkeeper. :)

And there you have it!  If you do business in only one currency, things will work as they always have with no real changes to the system.  But if you need to transact in multiple, the setup is easy and CA will handle the differences seamlessly.

Coaching Gone Viral

As the entire world feels the impact of COVID-19, social distancing becomes more important by the day. During this time many businesses are shutting down or scaling down operations, which makes some coaches wonder: what can I do with my coaching business during this time?

We’re keeping a finger on the pulse of the coaching industry, and here are CoachAccountable’s suggestions for the era of Coronavirus (as well as what we’re doing at this time).

Clean Out Your ‘Garage’

By this we mean ALL those areas where you might have some loose ends. Physical spaces, your computer, even interpersonal relationships.

Almost all of us have them: the half-baked ideas that would be good to pursue someday, the resources list we made last-second one day and never got around to refining, the antique grandfather clock that needs sanding (ok, maybe that’s just Morgan’s real garage).

But really, the slowing down of society affords us time to evaluate those ideas, tidy up the resources list, get rid of outdated files you no longer use, and all the rest. Just as it feels good to clean a room and throw out old items, cleaning up your CoachAccountable account and other records will probably feel good too.

Develop New Content

Especially if you have clients who slow down their frequency with you, it’s a great opportunity to create additional Offerings.

If you don’t have one (or if a new one would be a fit now), set up a self-paced Course for people to work through. How about an Onboarding Course, where you compile all those items you already send to new clients manually? A nice video walkthrough of the system with your voice and branding is also an easy start for many clients, and could be the perfect thing to produce right now.

Many coaches use CoachAccountable as a sort of lead funnel: a pre-set Course as the bottom, Group coaching at a middle price point, some one-on-one coaching at a higher price point, and perhaps an exclusive mastermind or workshop at the top. This allows clients to do more of a lifetime cycle with you, too. Any one of those steps could be a good entry point for new products – maybe a new free or paid Course to let people experience your expertise in a bite-sized lesson, for instance, or designing that exclusive high-priced product.

It could also be a good time to test the efficacy of the tools you already have as well as new ones, perhaps by offering a test of your new material for returning clients.

Discover What You Might’ve Missed

Chances are, you dove into CoachAccountable, started with the portions of the system that you needed right away, and maybe explored a few other features along the way, but never had time to check out that thing you were curious about. Now is a great time to experiment with features of CoachAccountable you’ve never used before. It might be a good idea, for instance, to finally drop Docusign in favor of Agreements. Or ScheduleOnce in favor of Appointments. Maybe you’re ready to automate the tracking of sessions with Engagements. Or any other places you can cut an additional system, removing complexity from your process, and likely saving some money at the same time.

Never made it through the Getting Started guide? Click on your name in the upper right >> Help >> Get Started to walk through it. Want to dig deeper into a feature or find what else you’re missing out on? Find a selection of recorded webinars to peruse. Click on your name in the upper right >> Resources >> Webinars to help you along. And if you’re curious about new tidbits that have come out since you joined, check out the rest of the CoachAccountable blog (the column on the left has Essentials and Tactical articles).

We’re happy to help as you expand your usage of the system to assist with remote working. Just drop us a line and we can meet with you (via Zoom of course) and make some recommendations for new avenues to explore. And if you’ve been a ‘lurker’ waiting for the right time to try out our free 30-day trial (or the right time to share some of your resources/referrals with other coaches), it might fit to try us out. We’re happy to meet with you, too!

Revamp Your Website

Perhaps you’ve got some new Offerings that you haven’t yet included on your site, or perhaps your “Book Now!” link leads people to a contact form, rather than an actual booking. This might be a good time to add those in using CoachAccountable Offerings.

Consider asking past clients for testimonials to beef up that portion of your website with real results you’ve helped achieve. That walkthrough video mentioned above could be a nice addition to your site, too, to show prospective clients your sophisticated system and help distinguish you from other coaches in your field.

Likewise, you can take a look at your website with fresh eyes: the copy, testimonials, images, and everything else, seeing if it’s still compelling and accurate. We actually did a webinar on enhancing your coaching website, with a little copywriting lesson in it.

Sharpen Your Tools

Since you’re a coach, you know more than most how much room we all have to grow. In fact, in our experience, the more you learn about yourself, the more responsible you are for all of it! This is a great time to self-evaluate. Resharpen the tools you use with your clients by applying them newly to your own life. Take your own Course. Measure something important to you with a Metric.

For many, the nature and structure of work may be changing. You can use this time to refine your business and work practices, streamlining by removing wasted effort. You’ll also have room to be creative with your approach: if you normally deliver group coaching in person, for example, what are some outside-the-box ways of recreating that co-creative experience virtually?

Find Your Own Coach

What’s an area of life where you could use a BIG breakthrough? Maybe, like those dusty corners of the garage, this area has felt like something to clean up later, when you have more time. Now is a perfect time to throw your hat over the wall and commit to a program or coach that will stretch you in uncomfortable ways. By being coached yourself, chances are you’ll get more present to what it’s like to start in on something tender, and the trust level it takes to work with a coach. You’ll represence the client’s experience for yourself. For Morgan’s part, she’s taking on an 8-week group financial coaching program with 5 other women.

And who knows – taking on being coached could spark some great ideas for other ways to run your programs or additional products.

Rest

This seems to contrast with much of the above, but hear us out. This slowdown in normal societal function gives us a wonderful opportunity to rest. To not hustle around all day from activity to activity. To be quiet. To reflect. To align. To snuggle with family.

You’ve likely been forced to remove many activities outside the home, so as things change later in the year, you’ll have the opportunity to add back in each one, or not. Like a strict diet cleanse, you might find that adding back in any non-healthy items will seem unappetizing.

And What’s Happening at CoachAccountable?

The team is healthy, and since we already work 100% remotely, we’re still working our normal hours from our separate cities and trying not to touch our faces. We’re available to help, meet you on Zoom for handholding, and answer any questions via support tickets. And, we’re taking our own advice and cleaning out our respective garages of any lingering to-dos in CoachAccountable land.

Let us know how we can help. Especially if you’d like to expand your use of CoachAccountable to work more remotely, and you’d like us to help determine what areas you can explore next!

May you and your loved ones and your communities be well.

 

If you’re thinking about getting started…

I got this email today:

I am just getting started as Hypnosis and Life coach.

I need this program as I have ADD and struggle with the maintenance/admin part of any job and now I am on my own, and want to be professional and be able to manage business on my own.

I don’t have paying clients yet, only peer coaching, but anticipate paying clients soon and would like to try the trial program. Or should I wait?

What do you think?

We get this question a lot from coaches who are just getting started, wondering if it’s worth potentially wasting their 30 free days of the trial period when they’re not quite yet off and running with their business.

To others who find themselves in a similar situation, I figure the response I gave her is worth sharing:

Great question!  As indicated in Item 1 of our Terms of Awesome (which the system will guide you to check out whenever you sign up) we’re happy to extend your trial if you haven’t yet really used it with real clients, so there’s no downside to giving CA a whirl sooner than later if you’re keen to do so.  (Plus you’re always free to come back and get another trial account.)

Moreover if you anticipate paying clients soon you may find having CoachAccountable to be a substantial advantage in attracting them and differentiating yourself.  Our webinar titled “A Better Coaching Website” gives a lot of ideas on how to make the value of what you do and the how of your process more evident to people who are considering working with you, and with CA Offerings you can make it so that people can sign up for your services or even just book an exploratory call with you right from your website.

All of these things will help you convey your professionalism while you’re getting established, and will help you manage a lot of the admin bits!

Whether now or later, and with CA or some other platform, I hope you find what you’re looking for to support your business!

Cheers,
John

So there you have it: if CoachAccountable looks in any way worth exploring, feel more than free to grab an account, EVEN IF you’re not sure you’ll have paying customers soon.

Our policy of liberally extending the trial periods of folks who are clearly still just kicking the tires means you don’t have to worry much about taking on a premature expenditure1, and having CA up and running as part of the professional presentation of your work can help you get started with those paying clients sooner.

Note:

  1. We don’t extend trials indefinitely, of course, but we’re happy to forego the opportunity of charging you $20 for a month or two!

What’s the Difference Between Offerings and Engagements?

When setting up your coaching business in CoachAccountable, the difference between Offerings and Engagements can be confusing. Here, we’ll detail what each one is for, and how to use the two in tandem.

What’s an Offering?

Offerings allow the automation of your sign-up process. 

Offerings are client-facing.

With an Offering, you can have clients:

  • Choose a coaching product
  • Enter their basic contact information
  • Complete an intake form (or not)
  • Book a consultation call with you (or not)
  • Pay (or not)

You can also use Offerings to automatically have the client:

  • Become part of a Group (or not)
  • Start receiving your materials, such as onboarding videos and intake forms (or not)
  • Be presented with a Coaching Agreement to sign when they first log in (or not)
  • Begin a monthly payment plan (or not)

The client or prospect is automatically given a CoachAccountable account, which makes it more likely for them to say yes to your coaching (for prospects) and be more engaged (for clients).

You can embed Offerings directly on your website, or use the standalone link when you’re emailing your list or posting on social media.

Here’s a bunch of Offerings to choose from, in what’s called an Offerings Bundle

What’s an Engagement?

Engagements allow the automation of your billing and packages.

Engagements run behind the scenes, visible only to coaches/admins.

With Engagements, you can:

  • Set up recurring invoices (like a monthly subscription, or installments on a payment plan)
  • Track how much of a client’s coaching package has been used
  • Notify yourself and/or your clients when the client is coming to the end of a coaching engagement
  • Limit clients’ ability to book more sessions than they’ve paid for

You’ve got a nice at-a-glance display of where the client’s at and what’s going to happen next. Each individual’s Engagement is easily adjusted if necessary.

How Do Offerings and Engagements Work Together?

The interaction is this:

Starting an Engagement CAN BE part of an Offering.

That means that (along with whatever else you’ve got starting automatically for the client via your Offering) you can have a sequence of invoices automatically begin upon signup. If someone’s purchasing a 3-month coaching package that includes, for example: 

  • one invoice per month and
  • 4 coaching sessions per month

the Engagement tracks how many sessions have been used, and sends out the monthly invoices for you so that you don’t have to think about it.

For more on how to include an Engagement as part of an Offering, check out this article

Together, Offerings and Engagements can automate away some of the drudgery of getting clients started, so you can focus on the coaching itself.


Get started with a free 30-day trial of CoachAccountable now.

(And if you haven’t seen this video showing how to set up an entire Offering in just 3 minutes from a brand new CA account – we recommend it!)

Direct Sync with your Apple Calendar

And then there were three.

Around this time two years ago I added direct sync with your Google calendar.  That fit the bill and did the trick for the vast majority of CA users.

Then around this time last year I added direct sync with your Outlook calendar.  That did the trick for most of the remaining CA users.

Now it seems there’s just remaining a rather small sliver of the CA community that uses neither, and rather instead keeps their online calendar with Apple Calendar with their Apple iCloud account.  Today I’m happy to report CA has them well covered too1: you can now directly sync your CoachAccountable appointments with your Apple Calendar.

Let’s see what’s new!

How to Sync iCal with CoachAccountable

As with the other two, syncing your calendar is a matter of visiting Settings >> Appointment Config >> Calendar Sync.

Take your pick and you’ll be on your way.

When you click “Sync with Apple!” you’ll be presented with the following prompt:

The first question should be easy…

You probably know your Apple ID, it’s the one that you would use to log in to your iCloud account2.

After that, though, you ALMOST CERTAINLY don’t know your App Password: rather than let CA know your actual iCloud password, (yikes, that would be too much sharing, and frankly we don’t want the burden of knowing that!) Apple lets you create a single-use password for specific apps that you want to grant limited access.  In this case, that’s just perfect for letting CA connect to your calendar.

How to Generate an Apple App-Specific Password

For better or worse, Apple requires you to set up 2-factor authentication in order to create app-specific passwords.  If you haven’t done so already, you’ll see the place to do so in the “Security” section on this page:

You see it? Yeah, it’s that blue “Get started…” link right down there.

Once 2-factor authentication is setup, you’ll see in its place the place to generate an app-specific password:

I’m sorry this is such a hassle. Yeah, I like the login-click-and-go flow offered by Google and Outllook better too.

Once you get that, paste it back where called for in CA and you’ll be on your way!

Nobody hack my stuff, okay? Just kidding, it’s just a dev account–do your worst. :)

Like any other direct sync, you get to choose which calendar CA should publish your appointments to (if any) and which calendar(s) CA should read from in order to prevent double booking (if any):

Which will it be?

Finally, like any other direct sync, your clients can go through the exact same steps to connect THEIR Apple Calendars.  They’ll find the place to do so under their “My Account” page, and, unlike you as coach, they won’t be prompted for which calendars to read from, but they do get their choice of which calendar their appointments with you should show up on.

Enjoy!

PS: Support for Apple Calendar means CoachAccountable can sync with any online calendaring system based on CalDAV protocol.  If you know what that means and it would be useful for you to connect to a CalDAV server outside of Apple, let me know!

Notes:

  1. Not that they’ve been left in the cold until now–the “old fashioned” way of calendar feeds and subscriptions has stood for years as a workable 80% solution!
  2. If you don’t have that, either you’ll need to sign up for an iCloud account OR Apple Calendar sync is not the one for you!

Delightful Collaboration X – Client Activity Stats

I got an email from Arne of Empowerment Holdings with a request:

I have a question regarding the statistics for client engagement.

Since we have to report how active all of the coachees are we need to go to client activity and count all action assignments/completions by hand. Is there a possibility to add a feature where we you can list all stats in a certain timeframe for the whole client stock with one click?

That would be great!

A great thing about the record of coaching happenings (that CA naturally accumulates over the course of common use) is that there is a lot of insightful data that can be drawn from later to summarize and analyze things like participation, effectiveness, and ROI.  In this case I could see how the particulars of how many times a given client has done this or that would make a useful report, and one for which CA has all the data.

I sometimes get requests like this, and when I do what’s incredibly helpful is to have a mock up.

So I replied:

Possibly! It would help to have a concrete example of what sort of report would be useful in terms of tabular data.

If you mock something up as an example of what would be genuinely useful as a simple CSV, containing information and/or stats derived from what CA would have available, I’ll see about adding the ability to generate such a report automatically!

Often times when I pose the challenge, more or less to the tune of “sounds promising, please mock it up for me”, I don’t get anything back.  That’s problematic, because that means the idea for the report likely isn’t yet clearly based on a thought out use case, OR that the desired information might not actually be readily known to CoachAccountable (and if all that is clear, lacking a mock up still means I’m likely doing a lot of guesswork to create what would actually serve the need behind the request).

No such issue here.  What Arne gave me back was exactly what I needed, PLUS a little more insight into the desire fueling the request:

Hey John,

Sure, so for our client it’s super interesting to see how active the coachees are. So I could imagine a Report like this to answer the question: How actively engaged was a certain group of coachees during a certain time.

Coaching Report
Cycle I Cycle II Cycle III Total
# Coaching sessions that have taken place 231
# Coaching time in hours 288,75 h
# Milestones & Goals formulated 276
# Actions formulated 855
# Actions completed 340
# Actions incomplete 515
# Cancelled Coaching sessions 22
# Worksheets assigned 100
# Worksheets completed 60
# Data points added 100
# Metrics added 400

Perfect! Now this I can work with.  The vast world of all possible things that CA tracks (and thus could ostensibly report on) is reduced down to a set clear stats that I am assured would be interesting and worth including, and the insight into why this would be cool at all (“for our client it’s super interesting to see how active the coachees are”) made me excited to cook this up.

You can see the end result in Reports >> Data Lab >> Client Activity:

Lots of data to look at, but no need to feel overwhelmed! You can modify what’s included to get only what’s interesting.

As you can see, it’s not verbatim as suggested.  While building it I realized there were other similar categories of stats that might be interesting, and that breaking it in to sections made it more clear to follow.  I also added flexibility in letting the user choose how the data is broken into columns (either by day, week, month, quarter or year).

This is significant to point out, because it highlights an important fact: we never do programming for feature development to spec for a customer’s request (no matter how big the customer), BUT we very often run with input about what would be useful in order to create something that has the potential to be generally valuable.

Fun fact: while composing the above portions of this blog post this morning I noticed that Arne’s mock up contained a “Total” column, yet that wasn’t in the CA report as originally released last month. So I just spent a little time to add it, as well as the options to include averages and percentage stats.  Do I love my job and feel empowered to act?  You betcha!

When I originally released this I was delighted to hear back:

Thank you so much! This helps us A LOT!!!

Music to my ears: to save an organization time AND help them to better show off the work their doing to the folks that hired them?  That’s a serious double win, and I hope you’ll get similar value from this.

My thanks again to Arne who was thorough enough to illustrate what he was needing… CA is better for everyone because of it!

Group Whiteboards

Whiteboards are a great place to keep a living document – perhaps an evolving business plan, a 5-year outlook, or a list of suggested reading materials. Until now, you’ve been able to keep your own Whiteboards, collaborate with an individual client on them, and share them via Courses.

Now the members of a Group can collaborate on a Whiteboard. Let’s take a look.

How to Enable Group Whiteboards

You’ll need to enable Whiteboards on a per-Group basis. Do this by going into the Group’s Settings; in the Add Ons section, tick the box for “Enable Group Whiteboards”.

Enable Group Whiteboards in CoachAccountable

You’ll now see Whiteboards as an option on the left sidebar. Go there, then click + Whiteboard to create a new one.

Note you’ve got the typical privacy options: to share the Whiteboard with the Group or keep it private for yourself. Team Edition accounts have additional privacy settings pertaining to the team coaches.

As with single-client Whiteboards, you’ll have the ability to peruse past versions of the Whiteboard to see what’s been changed and by whom.

See drafts of a Group Whiteboard in CoachAccountable's coaching software

In this case, each group member used a different color to contribute, but that convention is up to you!

That drafts view gives you a Google Drive-like functionality, without the creepy potential for someone watching what you type (I’m looking at you, Anonymous Llama).

Whiteboards in Non-Visible Groups

If you’ve got some admin-only Groups (meaning your clients can NOT view and participate in the Group, but you’ve set it up to help with your own management of clients), these Whiteboards will simply show up in each client’s respective individual Whiteboard tab.

You can still edit that Group Whiteboard, and those changes will show up in each client’s version of the Whiteboard. This is a great way to share items like resource lists across sections of or all of your client base.

Clients will not be able to edit Whiteboards in admin-only Groups, because they don’t know they’re in a Group! (For more discussion on the uses of admin-only Groups, check out our Webinar on the topic. Click on your name in the upper right >> Webinars to watch.)

 

Group Whiteboards: Another great project management tool in CoachAccountable brought into existence by the requests of our users!


Start your free trial of CoachAccountable today. Groups (and the new Group Whiteboards) come with your account at no additional cost. 

Group Action Projects

Action Projects are great for grouping related Actions together (and gamifying the results). But what about in Groups, where a larger project may be broken down into Actions for various people on the team to complete?

You can now also create Action Projects for a Group. Assign the parts of a project to the people who will actually do those items, and see the entire project move along. Some coaches have let us know this feature has allowed them to drop task sharing software like Asana and Trello.

Here’s how to set up a Group Action Project.

Enable Group Action Projects

By default, Group Action Projects are hidden in order to simplify your experience. To enable them, go to a given Group’s Settings >> Basics and check the box. You’ll then see Action Projects appear on the left sidebar.

How to Enable CoachAccountable Group Action Projects

If you’ve given Group members the ability to view and participate in this Group, they’ll be able to see the Action Project and its progress. If you’ve given them the ability to add Group Actions, they’ll be able to contribute Actions to the project. Check those settings in the Group’s Settings >> Participation (just right of the Basics tab pictured above).

Create a New Group Action Project

Go to Action Projects and click the +Project button (or click the Action Projects (+) button as found in the left side menu) and give it a name. All the Group members will see this name, so make sure it’s descriptive and clear. Once you’ve created the Project, you can click the edit icon in the upper right to change the name or add a description if desired.

To add Actions to the project, click the (+) button in the upper right of the Action Project (it appears when you hover your mouse).

From here, you’ll see a fairly typical Action setup screen. The main difference to note is that you can now choose an assignee, or in other words select the Group member to whom the item will be assigned.

As Group members mark items complete, the progress bar will advance based on the weight you’ve given each Action.

Making Changes

Notice that, from the Action Project tab, you can see who’s been assigned which Action; that person’s picture shows on the left. Hover over the picture to have that person’s name appear.

If an Action should be reassigned to another member, click the edit icon on the right of that Action. Click the assignee’s name in the Assign To section and choose another Group member. Just like with individual Action Projects, you can also change the due date, edit reminders, cancel or delete an item from this screen.

Modify a Group Member's assigned Action in a Project

Should many items be shifted on the timeline? No problem, just click on the edit icon in the upper right of the entire Project. Here’s where you can change multiple due dates or item weights.

Modify details of a Group Action Project

If you’ve got multiple Action Projects going on simultaneously, you can collapse the Actions and just see the progress bar by clicking the arrow in the upper right of that Project.

View all your team's projects

Use Cases

Setting up a Group Action Project can be useful for a few scenarios.

Perhaps you’ve got some members of a departmental team collaborating on the same project with different tasks that contribute to an overall goal. Action Projects allow you (and the team) transparency into whether the project is bottlenecked with one team member.

Or maybe you have a project that gets handed around as it works its way toward completion. A Group Action Project allows for easy reassigning of project items.

Some coaches work with small businesses, such as businesses run by a couple. Group Action Projects help keep both members of the team organized with all the different projects they’re juggling simultaneously.

Thanks to all who contributed by asking for this feature to help make your group coaching relationships run more smoothly. We’re happy to help minimize the number of systems you need for your coaching!


Have you been looking for software to keep your business coaching clients organized? Ready to drop some expensive project management services and put more things into one place? Try out CoachAccountable free for 30 days. 

Delightful Collaboration IX – Smarter At-A-Glance Displays

It’s just occurred to me that it’s been a LONG time since I wrote up a blog post under the “Delightful Collaboration” theme.  It’s not for lack of that sort of thing happening: feature requests stemming for good ideas, insightful perspectives, and specific use cases still come to us at a regular clip and we still act upon them to make CA accordingly better for everyone (recent examples include this and this!).

I figure it would be a shame for anyone to get the impression that we don’t do that sort of thing anymore, so here’s a pair of suggested improvements to CA that came in recently!

The first is another from Megan of Fidelity National Financial.  She wrote:

I had another idea for a new feature.  Would it be possible to add an option in the “What’s New” tab that would allow you to pull new items not only from a specific date (“show from..”) but also “since our last call”?  Or a drop down list of the calls logged in CA.  That way, coaches don’t have to look up the date of the last call.  They can select a call in the past and easily see what’s been accomplished since the selected call.

Let me know what you think.  Thanks!

I admit, I had to think on this one a bit.  Should the dates suggested by the system here be based on recent session notes?  Or recent scheduled appointments?  What about coaches who are prone to using one and not the other, or vice-versa?  Maybe include both, with filtering out the duplicates?

And how can I add this without cluttering up the UI for everyone with what might be a very niche-desired feature?  (After all, this was the first time I’d heard such a request in 7 years!)

The current system simply recalls your preference of your preferred look back window of X days, but there’s something nice about the precision of seeing what’s new precisely from the last call, which of course will vary from client to client.  Then I figured out an elegant way to tuck that new feature away, and I was sold: this could be a very cool thing to add for everyone.

Here’s the result:

When there is one or more to choose from, click the little appointment icon just right of the “Show since” date picker to reveal options.

I can’t deny I was tickled and stoked by the reply I got for adding this:

This is AMAZING and will make our jobs as coaches SO much easier! We’ll be able to easily narrow down what has been accomplished since the last time we spoke to our clients!  Thank you thank you!

Talk about good deeds being their own reward, and then some!  That I’ve managed to make any coaches’ lives easier is music to my ears (and something I daresay I’ve developed a healthy addiction for).


The second recent suggestion came from Twila Gates, long time CA user and generally a fan.  Twila asked:

Quick question: Is it possible to have a magic tag for “date of next appointment” and “date of last session notes” that I could place in the “profile extra” space in the settings.  It would make it quick and easy to see if each client has a next appointment set and also to know if I have completed all notes.

This one, too, I had to mull on.  A magic tag seemed a bit clunky: it would be such an easy-to-miss thing that one would have to manually add to each client’s Profile Extra.  I could see the next appointment date being universally handy, but date of last session notes felt a little niche in terms of utility and, coupled with the next appointment date, perhaps too much clutter to add to the standard display.

Ultimately I settled on adding just the next appointment date, when present, displayed standard for all clients in the My Clients listing (one out of two ain’t bad!).  To make space and prevent information overload in that listing I removed client physical addresses, figuring that sort of thing it’s nearly as a timely or topical in an at-a-glance listing (and not apt to change often, to say the least!).

And I saw a way to do Twila one better on her suggestion, which was to enable sort by next appointment, thus allowing the soonest-for-next-conversation clients to bubble right up to the top.

Here’s what this looks like:

“So, who am I working with next? Ah right, these guys!” Hover your mouse over the appointment date for more information.

And there you have it!  Delightful collaboration with the CA community remains alive and well, and everyone’s happier for it (myself included).

What I really love about these two requests in particular is that their born of nuanced experience of routinely using the system over time, and doing so with particular habits, patterns, or workflows.  Megan and Twila were both crystal clear on what would make those workflows more convenient, and clued me in to what would otherwise be a blind spot.

So to Megan and Twila, and the countless other coaches who have weighed in on how CA could be better, I say thank you!

Client-Specific Notification Settings

One of the magical things that CoachAccountable enables is for you, as coach, to have a real time window in to how things are going with your clients during the days (or weeks) BETWEEN your regular sessions: when actions are getting done, when a due date has slipped, when an assignment was completed, and so on.

Part of this magic is CA’s ability to send you notifications the moment these things happen, either via email or text.  It’s a very fine-grained level of detail, so much so that with many clients (or just a few highly active ones) it can become overwhelming.  Thus CA naturally allows you to turn on or off the various types of notifications that it can send you (and your clients).

Sometimes, however, it would be nice to have different settings apply to different clients, both for your benefit and theirs.

As coach, you might have tiered clients, wherein some are merely doing your course or participating in your group coaching experience, while others may be working with you directly.  With the ability to tailor these settings per-client, you can opt for more notifications with your 1-on-1 clients, while comparatively muting the activity of the ones on lower tiers.

This is also nice to tailor to the tastes of your individual clients.  In the words of one coach:

Is it possible to turn off the email reminders about completing actions for individual clients? I have clients that will be annoyed by this – but others who might like it.

That sort of request is worth accommodating!  Your default settings might represent what you feel is the best practice for someone working with you (things like “yes, an alert should be sent to my client when one of their actions becomes late”), yet you can let your client know that you can turn certain notifications on or off for them as preferred.

All notification settings can be overrode as desired for a given client.  To do so, simply bring up their client manager (by clicking the gear icon as found for a given client in the My Clients listing) and navigate to Settings >> Notifications and you’ll be on your way.

When it comes to these settings, a picture is especially worth a 1000 words:

Use your default settings, or custom tailor them to the individual.

Enjoy!