Coaching

Guide to Become A Coach

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Are you on your way to becoming a coach? Are you considering becoming a coach to transform the lives of others? 

Coaches come from a variety of backgrounds. Before becoming coaches, the majority of them worked in a variety of fields. We might deduce from this diversity of beginnings that the coaching profession appeals to a wide range of people. We may also conclude that there is a vast range of incentives for choosing this profession from one coach to the next.

Making a career transition can leave many questions in one’s head. And to top it all off if it is specially a new one. We hope this article helps you to find every answer to the question that comes in the way of becoming a coach. 

What is Coaching

Let’s begin with understanding what coaching is. The answer to What is Coaching is vast and deep. 

The majority of people that pursue coaching do it with a strong sense of purpose. Coaching has become a popular career choice for many people in recent years. Although there are a variety of reasons why someone could want to work as a professional coach, it is not for everyone.

Individuals, teams, and organisations can benefit from coaching to improve their behaviour, cognition, actions, decision-making, and overall efficiency. A coach helps a coachee make a change, learn new skills, or reach their goals. This is done through dialogue, which can take place in person, over the phone, or over the internet.

The coachee’s ultimate goal is to help them make progress in a certain area of their lives, at work, or in conquering a problem. We’ll look at how coaching works, how it differs from other methods, and what you should do next if you’re ready to start coaching. 

Here is how coaching works

A fundamental belief that underpins coaching is that we already possess the answers we seek. A coach’s role is to assist the coachee in obtaining these responses. This is accomplished through a variety of conversational techniques, including interrogation, active listening, observation, and reflection.

When these techniques are used, the coachee gains increased self-awareness and frequently a new insight. Having a non-judgmental, non-biased person available to provide focused attention enables the coachee to comprehend how to proceed.

Some coaches will employ NLP (neuro-linguistic programming) techniques, while others will incorporate tools such as journaling and meditation into their work. Numerous models, such as the GROW model, can be used in coaching, and some coaches will take a more fluid/intuitive approach.

To ensure progress, coaching frequently focuses on goal setting. Coachees are frequently encouraged to create a list of action points following a session so they are aware of the next steps necessary to continue moving forward. As a general rule, coaches have broader knowledge that is applicable across different sectors and can therefore coach people effectively in very different businesses.

It maximises an individual’s potential for performance. Rather than teaching them, coaching enables them to learn.It is now quite common for someone to consult a coach to assist them in achieving their personal and professional goals.

Coaching is a collaborative effort between the coach and the client. The coach does not need to be an expert in their clients’ line of business.

The coach assists the client in attaining their personal best and achieving the desired results in both their personal and professional lives. Coaching enables the client to perform at their optimal level, learn and develop in the manner in which they desire.

Role of A Coach

Every individual, team and workplace require a vision and a strategy, as well as the ability to adapt it when the situation changes. When it comes to creating goals, however, most businesses have good intentions. Most strategies fail due to a lack of adequate execution rather than a lack of strategy or vision. Knowing this ahead of time allows you to establish the ideal environment for executing a successful teaming strategy. The coach is an important part of the plan’s execution.

Because the position of a coach is frequently confused with that of a teacher or mentor, it’s critical to understand the differences between the three so that it’s evident how coaching can be employed in a setting.

  • Teaching is a method of imparting knowledge to a person on important topics and points. This is usually done in a theoretical setting with very little practical application. Let’s instead visualise crucial concepts and learn from examples presented.
  • Mentoring frequently entails counsel rather than education. It usually entails emotional assistance to help an individual discover their place in a field or career, rather than a concentration on practical abilities.
  • Coaching takes place in the actual world at work. Everything that is taught has a practical application, and it is frequently done on the job, which means that the individual learns while working. The coach’s job is to encourage learning, provide guidance, and study the individual to determine their strengths and limitations.

The coach ensures the following key roles are taken care of within an organization or with an individual. 

  1. To establish open lines of contact with the individual so that they can freely express themselves and explore various options.
  2. Encourage the development of new and innovative procedures based on an individual’s talents and deficiencies.
  3. To pay attention to the person and help them solve their problems.
  4. To provide regular feedback and, when necessary, critique.

Into The World Of Coaching: What to expect from coaching?

Importance of A Coach

A coach is a very important person. For many people, coaching is a life-changing experience that enhances their job and life outlook while also enhancing leadership skills. Coaching assists people in realising their full potential, allowing them to tap into new sources of creativity and productivity. As a professional coach, you will have the opportunity to help your clients make great changes and accomplish amazing outcomes.

A coach is a person who is involved in the direction, instruction, or training of a team or persons in general. Here are a few significance of a coach which makes them so important.:

  1. They provide individualized learning experiences that are suited to the needs of the person with whom they are collaborating.
  2. Rather than instructing a group of individuals, they frequently work one-on-one.
  3. They frequently collaborate with others to provide practical assistance in the field.
  4. Rather than providing instruction or teaching, they serve as guides to help people progress from one level of ability to the next.

Reasons to Be A Coach

Work that is meaningful to you is one of the most important factors of job satisfaction and fulfilment.

What kind of impact do you want coaching to have?

What problem do you wish to solve, and what do you want to accomplish through coaching?

Do you enjoy assisting others, and if yes, what would you like to assist them with?

Are you seeking for a business that can be run electronically and is not dependent on a physical location?

Let’s take an inward journey to manifest reasons to become a coach. Does it resonate with any of your own reasons and aspirations?

We’ve met and taught a lot of coaches and would-be coaches, and we’ve noticed that there are a lot of different reasons why people want to learn the skills or call themselves coaches. Naturally, some reasons are preferable to others. Consider the following, just to name a few:

To help others with issues you have experienced yourself. 

Everyone has lived a life. Everyone has worked before. Professional coaches have benefited from these experiences, both positive and negative, in order to achieve success in a certain area. The experience drives a strong desire to assist others in achieving their personal and professional goals. That is, use your unique experiences, the ones that set you distinct, to mentor others as they face similar challenges.

To acquire competent skills

Coach training classes and workshops draw a large number of people who are interested in learning new tools, methods, and strategies. These coach trainees frequently only want to add a fresh twist to their current work and have no intention of making a significant change in their field. Coaching is viewed by these applicants as a collection of extremely practical skills or complementing tools that will help them become more productive at what they already do. They do not consider coaching to be a job that they would like to pursue full-time.

Coaching strategies can be useful in a variety of occupations where human communication is a critical component of success. These candidates must have a firm understanding of their professional goals. They should not act as if they want to be coaches if they do not want to be coaches.

To make a career change

Some candidates aspire to make a significant change in their professional lives as well as their personal lives. They may be unsatisfied with their current situation, but their primary motivation stems from a profound desire to build a better future for themselves. Candidates will have more energy to fuel a meaningful and long-lasting personal and professional shift if this is the case. Because coaches frequently accompany clients who are undergoing similar emotional and professional transformations, this process will be even more important for their future abilities.

These applicants must be careful not to burn the bridges that connect them to their past, background, and initial career in some circumstances. To get started in their new careers, new coaches need to tap into their previous networks. A person’s ancestors are neither good nor harmful in and of themselves. It can be used to transition into a new activity at any time.

To build an independent practice based on your potential

The coaching profession is thought to allow people to work as independent contractors and break free from the constraints of a salaried career. A coach can start their own business, collaborate with others in a loose network, and gain professional autonomy. Other liberal professions, consultancies, and freelancing occupations have and continue to offer similar opportunities.

To truly be an independent professional coach, one must not only become competent in the coaching field. To continue to develop, one must also be a good marketer, salesperson, administrator, accountant, writer, receive ongoing training and supervision, be a member of a professional network, and so on. In a nutshell, becoming an independent coach entails establishing yourself as a one-person business and honing your skills in a variety of areas, typically with a lot more stress and alone.

Step-by-Step Guide to Becoming a Coach

For those who are looking to make a career in coaching, hold on. This brings us to the highlight of this article and actually answer the question: How to Become A Coach. 

Step 1: Get Informed About The Coaching Industry

The coaching industry has been growing at a rapid rate. This results in a wide range of styles and approaches, as well as all the modifiers that give you life, career, business, executive, and leadership coaching, among other things. There are also internal and external coaches, as well as a variety of coaching forms, such as one-on-one or group coaching, over the phone or in person, online programmes, or face-to-face workshops. Coaching is, in some ways, merely a tool; one that you may use in a variety of professions without necessarily possessing the title of Coach.

Step 2: Then Choose A Coaching Niche

Because coaching is such a broad discipline, practitioners can specialise in a variety of areas. This allows coaches to target a certain sort of client and provides potential clients confidence that the coach is experienced in assisting people with their specific problems. Life coaches can specialise in a variety of areas, including Life Coaching, Executive Coaching, Health and Wellness Coaching, Leadership Coaching, Parent Coaching and many more. 

Step 3: Build up Relevant Skills and Get Trained

Helping people improve different areas of their life is a big responsibility requiring specialized training. During training, prospective coaches learn the psychological principles of coaching, how to conduct a coaching assessment to determine clients’ needs, ethics in coaching, and communication skills.

To get the best results from their training, students should find a program accredited by industry associations like the International Coach Federation (ICF). This process takes about 18 to 24 months. Depending on the program you choose, you may pay between about $2,500 and $12,000.

As a result, choosing a short and practical beginning training programme is beneficial for truly learning how to coach. Spending hours on school benches before beginning to coach is ineffective since true learning occurs only when one begins to coach. Learning to coach is like learning to swim. One must swim in order to truly learn to swim. A person’s swimming ability improves as he or she swims more kilometres per week. Coaching is the same way.

As a result, extensive, broad, and theoretical approaches should be avoided. Select short, hands-on instruction that focuses on developing behavioural skills. When the first customers arrive, the best continuous learning occurs in supervision groups, which are once again focused on practising and developing skills.

Step 4: Get A Credential

To become good at anything, regardless of the area, it is critical to choose a very strong beginning learning environment. This initial training will not only equip the student with core abilities, but it will also offer them with a frame of reference that is specific to the industry or career. To create the greatest possible foundations for future development, choosing a suitable school to start in any direction is critical. As a result, it’s critical to pay close attention to each possible academy’s frame of reference. 

After you’ve completed your course, you can apply for certification. Professional groups such as the International Coach Federation (ICF) and the International Association of Coaching (IAC) offer credentials that require knowledge and evidence of high work standards. The ICF’s yearly membership price is $245 per year. Annual fees for the IAC range from $169 to $319 per year.

ICF Certification in India for Aspiring Coaches: Read it All Here!!

The Credentialing process is very vastly detailed. We have a separate section for that. 

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Whenever we think of entering the coaching world, the first thing that pops into our brain is how to become a coach. We wonder where to begin, what path to take, who to talk to, and how to proceed. This can sometimes be an appalling state but in reality, this is supposed to be easy and not horrifying. 

Well, we understand you and we are there for you. Not to rescue you, because you are not lost, but just confused. So, here is a guide to help you through your coaching journey. Let us first begin by understanding what exactly is ICF or International Coaching Federation. 

International Coaching Federation

ICF is an acronym for International Coaching Federation. ICF is a global body that is dedicated specifically to promote the profession of coaching. ICF is working towards establishing high standards, providing independent certification, and establishing a global network of qualified coaches. The International Coach Federation (ICF) continues to offer the only globally recognised, independent credentialing programme for coaches. 

Aspiring coaches or even professional coaches who seek certification and credentialing can earn their requirements with ICF. Professional coaches who have met rigorous academic and experience standards and demonstrated a thorough comprehension of the coaching skills that set the standard in the field are awarded ICF Credentials. A coach’s commitment to ethics, expertise, and mastery of coaching skills, and dedication to clients is demonstrated by earning ICF qualifications. Not only this but ICF also provides programs that are specifically designed to meet the needs of what a coach needs in any training program. So if you are looking for a coach specific training program then ICF is what you need. Now that you are clear with what exactly is ICF, let us discover the functions of ICF.

Role of International Coaching Federation

  • Developing core coaching competencies that are a primary requisite of a coach
  • Creating a code of ethics and professional standards that coaches all around the glob should follow
  • Developing a certifying program that is recognised around the world
  • Setting standards for coach-specific training programmes through accreditation
  • Continuous learning is provided through world-class events, Communities of Practice (CPs), and archived learning.
  • Conversations on the future of coaching are being led and informed by ICF  all around the globe.

ICF Credential Pathways 

Before jumping into the specific pathways, one must first be familiar with the term- Credential Pathways. So, ICF Credential pathways are levels of attaining certification and becoming a coach. So, there are three Credential pathways provided by International Coaching Federation:

  • ACC – Associate Certified Coach
  • PCC – Professional Certified Coach
  • MCC – Master Certified Coach

The number of recorded coaching experience hours and the number of hours of training received determine these levels. The application process for an ICF Credential is different depending on the level of Credential you want and where you got your coach-specific training. So let us discover each one of these pathways one by one.

ACC 

ACC stands for Associate Certified Coach. ACC is the first path provided by ICF. Here, Applicants have three pathways to choose from, for the ACC Credentialing. For each of these paths, the candidate must have completed a time periods of at least 60 hours of coach-specific training, 100 hours of client coaching experience, 10 hours of mentor coaching over a three-month period, and pass a performance assessment of their coaching as well as the Coach Knowledge Assessment (CKA).

The training(s) you used to complete the 60-hour coach specific training requirement influences your application path.  Examine the criteria below to see which path best suits the training you’ve received or are considering.

ACC ACTP Path

ACTP stands for Accredited Coach Training Program. ACC ACTP Path is one of the three ACC Paths. When fully completed, an ACTP programme comprises at least 125 hours of student interaction time, 10 hours of mentor coaching, and a performance review process.

The basic requirements of the ACC ACTP Path are as follows:

  • Completion of an ICF-accredited Coach Training Program (ACTP)* from start to finish.
  • Following the start of your coach-specific training, you must have a minimum of 100 hours (70 paid**) of coaching experience with at least eight clients.
  • At least 25 of these hours must be completed within the preceding 24 months of completing the certification application.
  • The Coach Knowledge Assessment must be completed (CKA).

ACC ACSTH Path

ACSTH acronym stands for Approved Coach Specific Training Hours (ACSTH). So now the question stands what exactly is ACSTH. ACSTH is not a coach training program but rather it where Institutes and other bodies who wish to impact and impart coach training to people can get there ICF accreditation.

The basic requirements of the ACC ACSTH Path are as follows:

  • An ACTP or ACSTH programme with at least 60 hours of coach-specific training is required.
  • Mentor Coaching for a total of 10 hours over a minimum of three months, as evidenced on your online application. Your Mentor Coach must be an ACC in good standing who has completed a full cycle of the credential, including renewal.
  • Following the start of your coach-specific training, you must have a minimum of 100 hours (70 paid*) of coaching experience with at least eight clients. At least 25 of these hours must be completed within the past 24 months** of completing the credential application.
  • Evaluation of performance (audio recording and written transcript of a coach session to be uploaded with your application).
  • The Coach Knowledge Assessment must be completed (CKA).

ACC Portfolio Path

Next comes the ACC Portfolio Path. The basic requirements of the ACC Portfolio Path are as follows:

  • A minimum of 60 hours of coach-specific training with thorough documentation is required. You’ll need to show that you’ve finished a comprehensive training programme that includes the ICF definition of coaching, as well as the Code of Ethics and Core Competencies, and is organised in a scope and sequence that supports your development as a coach.
  • Mentor Coaching for a total of 10 hours over a minimum of three months, as evidenced on your online application. Your Mentor Coach must be an ACC, PCC, or MCC in good standing who has completed a full cycle of their credential (via renewal).
  • Following the start of your coach-specific training, you must have a minimum of 100 hours (70 paid*) of coaching experience with at least eight clients. At least 25 of these hours must be completed within the past 24 months** of completing the credential application.
  • Evaluation of performance (audio recording and written transcript of a coaching session to be uploaded with your application).
  • The Coach Knowledge Assessment must be completed (CKA).

Note:

The ICF Credentials and Standards Board has temporarily allowed an increase in the proportion of eligible pro bono coaching hours for ACC applicants who apply before December 31, 2021, due to the COVID-19’s prolonged impact. 

The previously announced interim measure, which was supposed to expire on December 31, 2020, has been extended. Because the percentage is rising by 20%, ACC applicants can now use 30 hours of pro bono coaching toward their experience requirement (up from 25 hours).

PCC 

PCC stands for Professional Certified Coach. PCC is the second path provided by ICF. Here, Applicants have three pathways to choose from, for the PCC Credentialing. For each of these paths, the candidate must have completed a time period of at least 125 hours of coach-specific training, a minimum of 500 hours of client coaching experience, 10 hours of mentor coaching over a three-month period, and pass a performance assessment of their coaching as well as the Coach Knowledge Assessment (CKA).

The training(s) you used to complete the 125-hour coach-specific training requirement influences your application path.  Examine the criteria below to see which path best suits the training you’ve received or are considering.

PCC ACTP Path

ACTP stands for Accredited Coach Training Program. PCC ACTP Path is one of the three PCC Paths. When fully completed, an ACTP programme comprises at least 125 hours of student interaction time, 10 hours of mentor coaching.

The basic requirements of the ACC ACTP Path are as follows:

  • Completion of an ICF-accredited Coach Training Program (ACTP)* from start to finish.
  • Following the start of your coach-specific training, you must have a minimum of 500 hours (440 paid**) of coaching experience with at least 25 clients. At least 50 of these hours must be completed within the past 24 months*** of completing the certification application.
  • The Coach Knowledge Assessment must be completed (CKA).

PCC ACSTH Path

ACSTH stands for Approved Coach Specific Training Hours (ACSTH). So now the question stands what exactly is ACSTH. ACSTH is not a coach training program but rather it where Institutes and other bodies who wish to impact and impart coach training to people can get their ICF accreditation.

The basic requirements of the PCC ACSTH Path are as follows:

  • An ACTP or ACSTH programme with at least 125 hours of coach-specific training. 
  • Mentor Coaching for a total of 10 hours over a minimum of three months, as evidenced on your online application. A PCC or MCC in good standing must be your Mentor Coach.
  • Following the start of your coach-specific training, you must have a minimum of 500 hours (440 paid*) of coaching experience with at least 25 clients. At least 50 of these hours must be completed within the past 24 months** of completing the certification application.
  • Evaluation of performance (two audio recordings and written transcripts of coaching sessions to be uploaded with your application).
  • The Coach Knowledge Assessment must be completed (CKA).

PCC Portfolio Path

Next comes the PCC Portfolio Path. You must take the PCC Portfolio path if you want to use Continuing Coach Education (CCE) units and/or non-approved courses to fulfil your training requirements. The basic requirements of the PCC Portfolio Path are as follows:

  • A minimum of 125 hours of coach-specific training with extensive documentation is required. You must show that you have completed a comprehensive training programme that covers the ICF definition of coaching, the Code of Ethics, and the Core Competencies, and is organised in a scope and sequence that promotes your development as a coach.
  • Mentor Coaching for a total of 10 hours over a minimum of three months, as evidenced on your online application. A PCC or MCC in good standing must be your Mentor Coach.
  • Following the start of your coach-specific training, you must have a minimum of 500 hours (440 paid*) of coaching experience with at least 25 clients. At least 50 of these hours must be completed within the past 24 months** of completing the certification application.
  • Evaluation of performance (two audio recordings and written transcripts of coaching sessions to be uploaded with your application).
  • The Coach Knowledge Assessment must be completed (CKA).

Note:

The ICF Credentials and Standards Board has temporarily allowed an increase in the proportion of eligible pro bono coaching hours for ACC applicants who apply before December 31, 2021, due to the COVID-19’s prolonged impact. 

The previously announced interim measure, which was supposed to expire on December 31, 2020, has been extended. Because the percentage is rising by 20%, PCC applicants can now use 30 hours of pro bono coaching toward their experience requirement (up from 25 hours).

MCC 

MCC stands for Master Certified Coach. MCC is the third path provided by ICF. Here, Applicants has only one pathway. 

The basic requirements of the MCC Path are as follows:

  • 200 hours of coach-specific training.
  • Mentor Coaching for 10 hours over a minimum of three months. Your Mentor Coach must be a current MCC member. This cannot be the same Mentor Coaching that was used to apply for a previous ICF Credential.
  • Following the start of your coach-specific training, you must have a minimum of 2,500 hours (2,200 paid*) of coaching experience with at least 35 clients.
  • Evaluation of performance (two audio recordings and written transcripts of coaching sessions).
  • Professional Certified Coach (PCC) credential is currently (or previously) held.
  • When applying for ACC or PCC, take the Coach Knowledge Assessment (CKA) unless you’ve already passed it.

Note:

The ICF Credentials and Standards Board has temporarily allowed an increase in the proportion of eligible pro bono coaching hours for ACC applicants who apply before December 31, 2021, due to the COVID-19’s prolonged impact. 

The previously announced interim measure, which was supposed to expire on December 31, 2020, has been extended. Because the percentage is rising by 20%, MCC applicants can now use 30 hours of pro bono coaching toward their experience requirement (up from 25 hours).

 


Step 5: Know Your Target Audience and Grow Your Reach

An excellent method before getting started is to establish a list of all possible contacts, friends, and acquaintances. Beginning coaches will include all previous friends, colleagues, clients, suppliers, employers, family members, and so on on this list. Several hundred names, phone numbers, and email addresses make up an excellent list. Each entry should be viewed as a potential client as well as a referral source for other potential clients.

The next step is to contact each of these individuals and advise them about the coach candidate’s new professional position, as well as the increased value he or she can provide.

The first client is always the most difficult to discover in this procedure. The second is half as difficult as the first, and the third is easy. Several instructors are willing to offer free coaching sessions or demand little costs in order to aggressively begin their profession. In order to get started, it is vital to prioritise the acquisition of practical experience over quality. Fees are gradually increased upwards as soon as sufficient clients are obtained and instructors believe they have found their market.

It is critical for any firm, especially one in its early phases, to get the word out. Life coaches can receive the exposure they need to grow their businesses by placing ads in relevant periodicals. Attend networking events focused at people in your niche to meet the types of clients you want to work with.

Sharing good client feedback can also help life coaches acquire the trust of potential clients. Regular clients should be asked to write testimonials for the website and promotional materials.

Scope of Becoming A Coach

As a life coach, your pay will be determined by a variety of variables, including your:

  1. Location
  2. Educational Levels
  3. Workplace
  4. Workplace

The two most important elements impacting a life coach’s compensation are experience and time on the job, followed by geographic location. Unless they are self-funded, most life coaches do not have benefits such as medical or dental insurance or retirement savings. The majority of life coaches are female, accounting for 74% of all coaching practitioners. Most life coaches enjoy their careers because of the flexible hours, the ability to deal with a diverse range of clients from many walks of life, and so on.

According to a Forbes article from 2014 titled “Surprising Six-Figure Jobs,” over 20% of registered life coaches earn more than $100,000 per year. The salary for a life coach stacks up nicely against similar careers. Although no formal degree is required to work as a life coach, employers such as businesses, organisations, and government agencies do expect training and, in some cases, credentials.

It’s worth mentioning that, while life coach and therapist may appear to be comparable jobs, their responsibilities are vastly different. A life coach assists clients in moving forward by defining and achieving goals, whereas a therapist assists clients in healing from previous trauma by looking back.

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