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Client Agreements

Common to many coaching relationships is the need to lay out specific terms, agreements, or contracts between coach and client.  Even though periphery to the real work that gets done in coaching, these agreements are often essential in laying down a foundation of trust, workability, and clear expectations.

Such agreements typically include:

  • Payment terms
  • Cancellation & refund policies
  • Confidentiality provisions
  • What is expected of the client
  • What can be expected of the coach
  • Terms of engagement
  • Disclaimers, dispute resolution, and other topics of legal significance

A clear understanding about all of these protects the interests of both parties, and a clear record of what exactly was agreed to (and when!) is handy in the event of a dispute.

agreement iconTo make managing the coach agreements that your clients enter into (as part of working with you) easy and effective, we are proud to present CoachAccountable Client Agreements.

Here are the broad strokes of what these provide:

Signatures, check boxes and more.  When a simple “I agree to the above” check box won’t cut it, you can add various inputs to your agreements for your clients to fill in.  Think places to type their initials or full name, check boxes to acknowledge agreement to essential terms one by one, and even signature pads that require clients to physically sign with their mouse, stylus or finger.

Multiple, customizable templates to suit your various client types and engagements.  Create one or more agreement templates with dynamic tags like [clientFirstName] and [dateOf], each one tailored to the various types of clients and programs you offer.  For instance, your group coaching clients might have different rates and terms than your one-on-one coaching clients, which are different still from your in-person weekend mastermind clients.

Issue with ease.  Issue agreements for new or established clients with a few clicks.  CoachAccountable handles the rest by presenting the agreement to your client to complete (at registration for new clients, and upon next interaction for those already established).

Clear and readily-accessible records for both parties.  Coach and client can both see the clear (and time-stamped) record of what was agreed to and when.

Integrity and immutability.  The existence of an agreed-to Client Agreement is strong evidence that a client ACTUALLY did agree to it.  Coach can’t stuff a client account with Agreements that weren’t agreed to, and coach can’t alter agreements that were agreed to earlier.  Only client logged in as himself can agree to a Client Agreement, and the IP address from which they made the agreement is recorded.

Effective replacement for document signing services. With a robust and flexible system for issuing and securing agreements for your contractual needs with clients, these allow you to retire services like HelloSign or Docusign; CoachAccountable is one step closer to being the only system you need to run your whole coaching business.

Let’s see them in action!

Creating Client Agreement Templates

The first step is to create one or more Client Agreement Templates.  You’ll find the place to do this in Settings >> Agreements.

Click +Agreement Template to create a new one.

Composing an Agreement Template entails using the typical WYSIWYG editor.

Notice on the right there are several magic tags available for automatic customization.  These include [clientFirstName] and [clientLastName] (to customize to a given client), and [dateOf], which will set itself to whatever date your client executes the agreement.

If you’re on Team Edition you’ll also see [coachFirstName] and [coachLastName], allowing you to insert the name of whomever is the client’s primary coach.

Finally, in pre-loaded Agreement Templates you may notice [businessName] present as a magic tag.  This pulls from the name you’ve supplied in Branding (Settings >> System >> Branding >> System Names >> Name of my business).

To make a more interactive (and even more legally robust) Agreement you’ll want to include one or more form inputs, using the “Insert Form Input” button of the WYSIWYG toolbar (5th in from the right).  Form inputs are the check boxes, text inputs, and signature areas mentioned above.  Having a signature area at the bottom of your agreement preceded by something like “I, [clientFirstName] [clientLastName] hereby agree to the above as of [dateOf]:” is a nice way to wrap up.

Check box AND a signature area… thorough! And the “Dated” line fills itself in automatically.

 

Issuing Agreements

Once you create one or more Agreement Templates, they’re ready to issue to your clients, new and old.

For new clients, you’ll see Agreements as part of the dialogue for adding a new client. Like with established clients, you’ll be able to choose from your Agreement Templates and customize as desired.

New coaching client terms and conditions

If the Agreements portion is missing for you, it’s because you don’t have any Agreement Templates!

The Agreement you issue to a new client will be presented as part of their account registration (i.e. when they choose their username and password).  If you issue multiple Agreements (see the “For existing clients” section below for how), the first one you issued will be presented as part of the registration process and subsequent ones will be presented right after.  That said, multiple agreements for a new client just getting started might be a bit overwhelming… so even though you can do it, we don’t recommend it!

For existing clients, go to the client’s Settings (gear icon found in the lower right for a given client in the “My Clients” listing) and you’ll see a section called “Agreements”.

Click “Issue New”, and you’re presented with a dropdown menu of your Agreement Templates. Clicking the customize button allows you to add or change anything that’s specific to this one person.

Issue new coaching client agreement

Issue it, and the client will be presented with that Agreement the next time they access the system.  They’ll not be able to do anything else in the system until they complete the Agreement.

If you’d like to change something in an already issued Agreement, you can do so up until the client has completed it by deleting and re-assigning a new version.  For an unimpeachable record, no changes may be made after it’s been completed (though you can delete and re-issue if needed).

Once the Agreement is completed, you’ll see the date and time the client acknowledged your coaching terms and conditions, as well as the IP address.

If a client switches subscriptions, moves to a different type of coaching, restarts coaching after a hiatus, or for any other update to your coaching terms and conditions, you can issue an additional Agreement reflecting whatever new arrangement is in effect.  They’ll be added to the record of past Agreements.

Reviewing Past Agreements

You and the client are both able to see all previous Agreements, including when they were accepted by the client. As coach, access this record via a given client’s Settings >> Agreements.  Your client will find the record of their agreements with you by clicking on their name in the upper right >> My Account >> My Agreement(s).

Oh dear, Mikayla only signed her first name… do we need a do-over?

Agreements in Offerings

When someone signs up for one of your Offerings, they become a new client in your account.  When configuring your Offering you can designate one of your Agreement Templates to be the one that applies to those clients (i.e. they’ll be presented with that Agreement when they register their account, and will be required to complete it before entering the system).


And there you have it!  Client agreements, contracts, terms and legalese are often a pretty dry, boring, and perhaps even unpleasant part of running a coaching business, but with CoachAccountable Agreements you can get those terms right once and then have them handled for all clients with negligible effort.

Bonus: Looking for some inspiration on what your Client Agreements should look like?  Click here to install 5 samples we’ve provided.  Pick the best one for you, tailor it to suit your business and you’ve got another thing handled!


Ready to drop HelloSign or Docusign and do all your coaching client management through CoachAccountable?  Try us out free for 30 days and let us know what you think of the new Client Agreements.

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