Coach Interview Series: Barb Hazelton

by Brandon

Barb Hazelton

Divorce Expert

Our main objective here at the National Coach Academy is to enable aspiring coaches to reach their full professional potential. One of the most effective ways to educate students about the world of coaching is by offering them a window into the world of real, practicing coaches and showing them all the different ways coaches make a difference in the lives of their clients.

We hope today’s interview adds another insightful glimpse into the dynamic world of coaching.

Today we are interviewing Barb Hazelton. Barb Hazelton is a divorce expert and co-creator of Single Process, a new series on navigating the process of divorce. While she is not a coach, Barb’s work in the divorce space serves as another model for anyone looking to make a career out of helping men and women navigate the end of a marriage.

NCA: Can you describe your business and the kinds of clients you typically work with?

Barb: We work with people going through all stages of divorce — pre-divorce, currently in a divorce, and post-divorce. Our solution is approximately 75 videos — each with an expert and each on one specific topic. If it’s about emotional health, for example, we’ll do a segment on navigating your divorce.

We do a lot on kids — how to not put your kids in the middle, how to manage teens and tweens in divorce. And then post-divorce: going back into the court system, renegotiating child support and alimony, and then the expert would relate to the topic. A lot of times it’s attorneys; sometimes it’s therapists. It’s kind of a mix.

NCA: You said it’s 75 videos. Can you explain a little bit more about how that process works?

Barb: It’s a self-navigated process. We promote our website through Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram as well as through our partnerships with the different attorneys who have been our experts and the different therapists.

If someone goes to our website, you can search through the video tabs. There are 12 of them. One is on parenting, one is on the legal process, finances, emotional health, substance abuse, etc. If you, for example, are going through a divorce and dealing with a narcissist and you searched in our search bar for narcissism, it will bring up a couple of videos that talk about that. One is about managing a narcissist and the other is about texting strategies for working with a narcissist.

We’ve helped people save tens of thousands of dollars, hours and hours of going down the wrong path, hours of less stress and anxiety that’s affiliated and associated with the process of divorce. Our videos are designed to educate you on the process and the options and how to best pursue what works for you.

NCA: What prompted you to structure your product in this form of videos instead of having one-on-one conversations with experts?

Barb: Probably just because we heard video is hot. It’s the thing of the future. Instagram had just launched a video product. Facebook had just launched Facebook Live. We thought, “Let’s take advantage of that.” People can now listen to videos and podcasts in their cars easily, so we converted everything to mp3 files. We have a podcast channel as well. We just thought that would be an easy way for people to absorb the information.

There’s so much out there in print. There are magazines and there are blogs and this and that. Even when we searched around we were like, “This is ridiculous. There’s almost too much information and none of it was very good.” So we thought a video might be the right medium.

NCA: In working with your clients, what would you say is the most rewarding part of that process and on the flip side of that, what is the most challenging aspect of the business that you’re running?

Barb: The most rewarding is that we’ve helped people save tens of thousands of dollars, hours and hours of going down the wrong path, hours of less stress and anxiety that’s affiliated and associated with the process of divorce. Our videos are designed to educate you on the process and the options and how to best pursue what works for you. It works great if we catch somebody at the right time.

The biggest frustration for us has been marketing to the pre-divorce group. We don’t know how to reach them. Most people find us when they are in the process of divorce or they’ve been frustrated and failed at the process, so then they’re looking for answers. We are struggling with that piece the most.

NCA: On your path to becoming a divorce expert, can you think of another professional who was the most vital to your success and in what ways did this individual help you thrive in your career?

Barb: One of our experts is named Dr. Sue Cornbluth. She was kind of a super expert in that she markets herself very successfully. She has a television show, she has a radio show, she does podcasts, and she has been very collaborative with us in suggesting different things we can do to market ourselves. I feel like that’s been a true partnership. Anything we do, she promotes on her channels, and the things she does, we promote on ours.

NCA: What initially got you interested in this career niche, in this particular path of being a divorce expert? Was there something that set that off?

Barb: I had a terrible divorce. [laughing] My best friend Jo and I both. It’ll sound a little arrogant but we’re educated, smart, resourceful women with a huge support network — tons of friends, really good family behind us — and we both really failed at the process. We could’ve negotiated much better packages for our children. We could’ve saved the relationship with our ex much more than we did. We could’ve saved more money. We could’ve saved time. I was shocked as was she that we didn’t navigate the process successfully.

And when you’re going through it, your friends ask you, “Who did you use? Did you use a mediator? Who’s your guy?” I was at the point where I wasn’t even really comfortable recommending my people, which is unusual for me. So Jo and I decided we should do a quick video series on how to navigate divorce successfully.

We started with 10 videos. Not one expert turned us down when we went to them to ask if they would participate. The more it got out there, better experts agreed to participate so it turned into 75 videos over the course of a year and a half. But it just stemmed out of our own ignorance and lack of success with divorce.

All of our videos are designed to be very positive and give you solutions. We are not pro-divorce at all. We’re very much pro-healthy relationship. If you’re in a bad marriage, we want you to have information on how to fix that or get the answers you need.

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