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Becoming a Coach: A Simple Way to Choose Your Path

Posted by Julia Stewart

Confused coach

Where should you start when becoming a coach?


The days of simply printing up business cards and calling yourself a coach are over. Large scale surveys of professional coaches show that coaches without coach-specific training and certification are less successful than trained and certified coaches and are more likely to quit the profession within a few years. That can cost you tens of thousands of dollars in lost income, as well as the fun and fulfillment that comes from succeeding as a coach and helping your clients achieve what they really want.


There are hundreds of coaching schools to choose from, some that are excellent and some that are not so excellent, so choosing one can be an overwhelming decision.

I suggest you begin your quest for the perfect coach training school for you by first deciding which coach certification you want.

Why? Because there are fewer coach certifications to choose from and that choice will narrow down your options for coach training, making it easier to decide.

I also suggest you get certified by an independent not-for-profit certifying organization.

Why? A certification in almost any profession that comes from an independent certifying organization that is not-for-profit is usually seen as less-biased and therefore more respected than a certification that comes from the school where you trained. Standards vary between schools. In fact, there are a couple of training programs that claim to train and certify professional coaches in only a few days! Don’t be taken in by that promise.

The two most recognized independent not-for-profit coaching organizations that certify professional coaches are the IAC and the ICF.

We suggest you visit both the IAC and ICF websites to see which one you feel most drawn to. Both organizations have about the same number of subscribers and are well respected, but their certification processes are completely different. You can also view lists of licensed or approved coaching schools on each site. Choose a school that prepares you for the certification of your choice. Simple!

Become a Coach eBook Have More Questions About Becoming a Coach?

Download our free Become a Coach eBook. It contains a free 8-hour coach training program, too!

Copyright, Julia Stewart, 2009

Topics: become a life coach, become a coach, become a business coach, coach training schools

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