Holding an accredited life coach certification is not only the most easily definable difference between you and the individual who has just set up a life coach business on a whim, but it is also the foundation of who you are as a coach.
According to the ICF, the most significant influence on how a client comes to coaching is word of mouth. To win clients you have to be reputable, and in the unregulated profession like coaching, a key part of that is ensuring you’re credentialed.
There is no official data regarding the number of life coaches in the UK. However, even over a decade ago there were an estimated 80,000 to 100,000 life coaches in the UK. Since then the profession has continued to grow in popularity.
However, if you look at credentialed coaches, the picture is very different. The two main professional bodies for coaching in the UK – the International Coach Federation (ICF) and the Association for Coaching (AC) – have considerably fewer life coaches ‘on their books’. The ICF has 1709 members as of May 2017 in the UK alone, and the AC has 5500 members globally. These figures are even more interesting when you consider that even though the ICF reports a 4% rise in credential holders, this still only amounts to 900 life coaches in the UK. The figures speak volumes: it is the accredited life coach certification that makes one life coach truly stand out from another.
How to Win Clients
Winning clients will likely, for the early years of your life-coaching career at least, be a constant wheel that needs turning. It’ll take a mix of advertising, networking, and other strategies to get your name out and ultimately get the word-of-mouth system that we mentioned earlier operating. It doesn’t just happen.
However, not only does an accredited life coach certification give you a head start on the masses when it comes to who you are on paper, it gives you a head start with the networking required to boost word-of-mouth clients.
Through completion of an accredited life coach certification, you are going to be required to undertake a minimum amount of coach training hours. This equips you with the skills and methodology to take into your practice as a life coach. However, an accredited life coach course will also bring you two other elements that will help you win clients: a network and a mentor.
The nature of life coaching is such that you don’t always naturally come in to contact with other life coaches in order to benefit from their experiences and to extend your network. However, an accredited course should bridge that gap. For example, the Accredited Diploma in Transformational Coaching not only provides you with far in excess the number of required coaching hours for accreditation, it also brings you an invaluable network of other coaches, as well as mentoring beyond the end of your course – helping you take the steps needed to win clients.
How to Get Accredited Life Coach Certification
A quick recap of the figures shows us that the vast majority of life-coaching courses available in the UK aren’t in fact accredited. Their value is therefore debatable. In the UK, the two primary bodies governing life coaching are the International Coach Federation (ICF) and the Association for Coaching (AC). You need to ensure that the life-coaching course you select is accredited to one, or ideally both, of these organisations.
To find out more about accredited life coach certifications, and how they are necessary to win clients, join our Free Introductory Course.