ADANNA AUSTIN is a renowned Caribbean Business Coach, Strategist and Consultant, based in Trinidad and Tobago, she has also been operating across the English-speaking Caribbean Region for the past two years. Adanna has supported more than 500 entrepreneurs across three key markets to develop a winning mindset, with clients reporting as much as 25% in new business growth, 50% increase in profitability and 35% in new sales and clients. Adanna works one on one with entrepreneurs to take their business to the next level, she is highly sought after because of her wealth of experience, her dynamic approach and genuine interest in seeing her clients grow the business of their dreams. Adanna is also an avid Writer having contributed to many regional publications including Caribbean Beat (Trinidad & Tobago), Maco Magazine (Barbados/Trinidad& Tobago), SHE Caribbean (St. Lucia) and Shabeau (Barbados). In January 2016 she started a Blog and has written 42 articles educating her readership on how to set SMART goals, identify ideal clients, boost productivity and performance, and develop strategies to generate increased revenue.
She completed her Coach certification at the Master Coach University in the USA, Adanna also has a MA in Mass Communications from the University of Leicester and a BA in English Literature from the University of the West Indies, Barbados. Her training and development includes a Diploma in Internet Journalism, a Certificate in Project Management, and Certificates in Crisis Management & Communications and Brand Management from the University of California. Having worked across a wide array of Sectors, Adanna has held several senior positions in finance, banking, education,
publishing, advertising, FMCG and recruitment. She has also worked in the United Kingdom and most recently across Government in Trinidad & Tobago at the Central Bank of Trinidad & Tobago, and the Office of the Financial Services Ombudsman.
As the Business Owner and Founder of Marketing Dynamics Business Solutions, Adanna provides business coaching and support to small and medium-sized firms covering marketing plans, advertising, strategic partnerships, media schedules, event planning, social media and branding. Her clients say that she is accessible, connected, willing to share, has a love of teaching, and holds them accountable. (Testimonials are attached.) Managing one of the most active business mentoring Facebook groups in the Caribbean Region, Dynamic Business Strategist, Adanna provides a platform for over 1,000 entrepreneurs from across the globe to network, test business ideas and work together to develop their growth strategies. She provides daily motivation and inspiration to this group of micro, small, medium and large enterprises in a highly competitive and challenging global business environment.
She also organises several mastermind eventsproviding a forum for entrepreneurs to network and build their confidence, knowledge and expertise. Adanna is also an active volunteer, mentoring youth entrepreneurs involved in start-ups across all sectors from technology to food and beverage. In 2016, she became a mentor with Women Innovators of the Caribbean Acceleration Program (WINCAP TT) 2016 as well as Youth Business Trinidad & Tobago (YBTT).
AA: Quite by accident actually. I have been in business for a number of years providing marketing and public relations support for companies and I recognised over time that my clients were asking for a different type of support. At the time I did not know it was called coaching, but after doing some research, I came upon the term and dived into get trained and hiring a coach myself. From there I launched into my own coaching business.
AA: I work 1-on-1 with entrepreneurs to help them get very clear on their goals, identify their ideal clients and develop the strategies to grow their business and increase their revenue. I do this in a number of different ways but mainly through 1 -on-1 online coaching which could be for 3 or 6 months, group coaching programmes also done online or through workshops.Each call we discuss the challenges the entrepreneur is experiencing and we decide together on the next course of action. As a coach, I help you realise your potential by asking you some tough questions, guiding you thru your transformation, keeping you accountable with weekly activities and cheering each on along every step of the way. One size does not fit all, so until I speak with an entrepreneur only then do we decide the full course of action.
AA: I would not say undervalued but I would say not understood. The concept of coaching is still very new to the region and that is why coaches like myself are really not just trying to sell the concept but to educate entrepreneurs and show them the value of it. I also got a coach so that I too could appreciate its value. It starts with educating persons about what it is, how it can help and showing them some examples of transformations.RB: What are some of the strategies you use to help your clients recognise their own power?
AA: I ask them tough questions. I like to make them uncomfortable and get out of their comfort zone because that is when they truly see how powerful they are. I also give them small challenges like- do a live video today at 5pm! Or pick up the phone and call XXX. The things I know they procrastinate alot about. I push them past their limits and I keep them accountable. I also encourage them to do daily affirmations and practice the art of journaling and visualization so they can really get clear on who they are and what they want to be known for.
RB: As an entrepreneur one of your biggest assets is being self aware. What role does the concept of self awareness play in your work?
AA: It plays a huge role! I believe in order to be successful you have to not just believe in yourself but know what you want to be known for. Nobody can do that or answer that for you. You have to know what you stand for and what you want. That comes from a deep sense of self validation as well which is something we work in during our coaching sessions. Many entrepreneurs are stuck because of fear. I believe you have to face that fear, acknowledge it, understand why you have the fear and then chart a course to move past it. That comes with self awareness because it stems most times from false expectations and past experiences.
RB: Tell us a little about your ideal client. Give us a prototype.
AA: My ideal client is an entrepreneur who has been in business for 2-5 years and is now ready to do bigger and greater things in their business. It is the entrepreneur who is already making money but knows that with some tweaking of strategy and some focus and consistency that they could be making 6 and 7 figures. My clients are those who do not have to be convinced that it takes work to make a difference in their business and that success comes with challenges.
RB: What is the biggest hurdle your clients face?
AA: Fear and self doubt. Many times, they are afraid to look beyond what is in front of them. They limit themselves by what they say and believe and thus they feel stunted in their growth. They doubt themselves into failure sometimes. It is a constant struggle even for some of the more seasoned entrepreneurs not just those who are now starting in business.
Entrepreneurs get stuck in comparing themselves with others. They also do not think beyond our shores. The believe that everything has to happen in this little pond of our island and do not realise that there is a whole big world just waiting to buy what they have.
RB: What coaching advice do you have for our aspiring entrepreneurial readers?
AA: Hire a coach!- Lol. But seriously, they need to just start where they are. We actually have enough resources and skills to start where they are and then scale up. Stop waiting for the perfect logo, perfect website, perfect anything and just start where you are and evolve as you grow!
And secondly do not do it alone. Collaborations are the fastest way to grow your business. Find persons who have the same client base as you but offering a complimentary service and work with them to provide even more value to your clients and theirs. This is how so many successful entrepreneurs before us have grown so quickly without a huge budget or all the fancy works. Try it, it really works.