Whether you are starting a new business or growing an existing business, this is not a game. It’s real life, everything is on the line, and there is no room for error. You walk onto the field each day, armed with a business plan as your playbook, and the motivation to succeed, but when you are in the middle of the play, who can help you see through to the end? A coach.

Nothing is more exhilarating than the anticipation of starting up a new business idea or growing a business to the next level — until the details and day-to-day challenges start to seem daunting. Business planning is a tornado of required actions mixed with emotions that can sometimes seem to whirl around at breakneck speed. One day you just want to get started, another day you might stare at a blank computer screen wondering what the point of a business plan is anyway. Still other days, the ideas start to seem overwhelming and it seems much easier just to give up. The problem is that you have this entrepreneurial spark that sits in the back of your head spinning yet another idea to create or grow. So how do you keep going? How do you see through to the finish line? How do you really get into the business game?

Any athlete who really wants to compete gets a coach. You can gather a strong team of advisers, but they won’t hold you accountable to a set plan of actions and goals. You can read every book on business there is, but the books can’t provide detailed feedback on your unique ideas. You can write a plan, but the plan itself doesn’t challenge you to push further than you thought possible. A coach can provide that extra set of eyes that can objectively see the holes or potential pitfalls or even the strengths that you haven’t yet considered.

We can’t always do it on our own with just pure will, even when we have a great idea. So many things can get in the way. Lack of knowledge on where to start; inability to manage time and resources; inability to identify challenges; or the inability to look objectively at an idea to which we’ve become very emotionally attached. This is where a coach steps in.

When you are tired, coaching can reignite passion. When you are unclear, coaching can dig deeper into your potential by clarifying values and purpose. When you are feeling overwhelmed, coaching can discover your strengths and mobilize your talents. When things are moving too slowly, coaching can provide the fuel needed to push you and your business back up to speed. When you are stuck behind barriers, coaching can help identify and clear the obstacles to success. When you have reached a stalemate, coaching can revitalize you and uncover new opportunities.

You may very well be a brilliant entrepreneur and business owner. If so, have you reached your full potential? Have you reached every one of your business and personal goals? Have you considered expansion? Have you considered a new business? Are you equipped with the tools to make it happen? Do you know all the right questions to ask? Have you aligned your team with the best that there is? The world’s best will seek help while answering these questions.

Just as coaching is used from little league to professional sports, it can help on all levels of business development, from conception to expansion, and in small to large ventures alike. You can set your pace faster, set your goals higher, achieve success and perform better. Everyone benefits from that bird’s-eye view, which is what a coach provides. People come to business coaches for a variety of reasons. You may need an expert who isn’t blinded by the industry or by too many years of staring at the same numbers. You may need the accountability created by reporting to your coach weekly after setting personal commitments. Many times we get bogged down in the day-to-day operations and forget that there is a much bigger picture to look at if we want to grow. With ever-changing markets, you may need a coach to bounce ideas around with, in order to grow through the challenging times. You may simply need to rediscover the passion that created your brilliant business idea in the first place. You may need guidance to find the proper people to support your business and advise you in proper strategy. Finally, you may be looking for greater profits or returns with less work. Anyone can hang a shingle and be open for customers, but it takes more than a name and idea to really own a business.

In the end, however, coaching is more than just the bottom line. Coaching can help you discover a life of balance that works for you, especially important since a business can, at times, take over every aspect of your life. It can guide you in making better decisions about life and business. It can help you find ways to get more done in less time, and overcome the many potential barriers to success. Coaching will help you set and attain goals in life and business, and then push you to become the person and business owner that even you didn’t think was possible. If you really want to be a player in the game of business, don’t sit on the side lines; don’t wish and dream. Get a coach and make it all reality.