How Important Are Credentials as a Coach?

Holding a credential is extremely important to today’s coaching clients. The most recent 2022 Global Consumer Awareness Study found that 85% of coaching clients say it’s important or very important that their coach holds a certification or credential. Earning a recognised credential provides you with instant credibility and increased visibility to prospective clients.

The Gold Standard of Professional Coaching.

Anyone can call themselves a coach. But ICF-credentialed coaches are professionals who have met stringent education and experience requirements and have demonstrated a thorough understanding of the coaching competencies that set the standard in the profession. Additionally, they adhere to strict ethical guidelines as part of ICF’s mission to protect and serve coaching consumers.

How do I get Credentials as a Coach?

Firstly, it’s essential that you select a Coach Training Program that is accredited with an International Coaching Organisation. It’s important to do some thorough research on this so you don’t choose the wrong program.

An accredited program will then have both the right amount of training or contact hours, together with enough Mentor Coaching to help you gain the ‘hands on’ practical training and guidance you need to best serve your coaching clients.

Next you will need experience coaching. That means coaching experience hours must begin after you’ve started a coaching education program. Typically, you will need a minimum of 100 hours of coaching experience before you can apply for credentials.

Then you need to pass a performance evaluation(s) that assesses your coaching skills and lastly, a written exam designed to test your understanding of and ability to apply coaching core competencies and ethics.

What is the International Coaching Federation?

When ICF was founded in 1995, its purpose was to give credibility to an emerging profession and give coaches a place to connect with one another. In the 25 years that followed, ICF has grown to become the world’s largest organisation of professionally trained coaches, and the leading voice for the global coaching community.

What are Clients looking for?

More and more clients today have an expectation that their coach will be both qualified and carry some sort of coaching credentials, ideally being Internationally recognised. If you want to coach in Government or the Corporate sector, it is pretty much a mandatory requirement now for coaching credentials.

And let’s face it, if you are considering a career change, you want to make sure that you give yourself the best chance of success by beginning with recognised qualifications. This means not only a program that provides a pathway to international credentials, but also if you can, seek out a program that is also nationally recognised in Australia, like a Certificate IV or Diploma program. These can only be delivered by authorised Registered Training Organisations and ensure that your course has enough rigour to be recognised by the National Training bodies. As they say, not all ‘Courses’ are created equal. Be on the lookout and do your research as some course providers say they comply with these requirements and provide a pathway to International credentials, but in truth they don’t.

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