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7 Life Coach Certification Requirements you Can’t Afford to Overlook in 2021

life coach certification

Life coach certification is big business these days, with tons of courses to choose from. Ultimately, this is a good thing. The industry is booming.

Yet, searching for good life coach training can be overwhelming. We need to break things down into manageable chunks, which begins with itemizing the essential elements of any top-notch course.

How do you choose a life coach certification training without fearing that you’ve chosen unwisely? First and foremost, you should develop your list of personal requirements as well as essential elements, based on your learning preferences and industry standards.

The seven requirements in this post should be the minimum standard to ensure that your training will set you up to succeed in business as a coach. With so much to consider, including unforeseen challenges, it’s more important than ever to join a training program that will stick with you in the long run.

I’ll also provide plenty of references in this post and links to further reading about each recommendation. Here we go!

✅ Quick tip: Don’t just read the headlines in this post. The real gems are in the body. So take a breath and focus. If you’re looking for a life coach certification, there’s something important here for you.

Life Coach Certification Training Standards – Everything you need to know and then some.

life coach certification accreditation

1. Accreditation

The International Coach Federation is the largest, most known, and well-established life coaching association. ICF is a private organization that, while bearing no legal authority over coaches, is the closest thing the industry has to a regulating body.

Should you get certified by an ICF-accredited institute?

Yes, for several good reasons. Getting an ICF accredited life coach certification is a no-brainer. It’s all upside and no downside. Additionally, ICF accreditation may be an insurance policy against future regulation. Because ICF accreditation is not legally required to practice as a life coach, many forego this option.

However, if the life coach industry continues its creep toward regulation, you definitely want to have your ICF credential on hand. Check out the post below to understand this important issue.

The quality of the best life coach training programs can be the difference between success and failure.

2. Quality

Life coach training quality comes down to the skillset that you leave with. At the end of the day, you will get paid to help people improve their lives. Applying the skills you acquire through training makes this possible. It’s not rocket science but there are models and methods that really work. Will your life coach certification teach you those critical elements of your success? Not all training programs do, believe it or not.

It may be hard to imagine spending thousands of dollars and months of your time in a training program, only to leave with a little more coaching skill than you came with. This is often the case, however. Many, many life coach certification programs merely teach you about coaching but fail to transfer actual coaching skills that will work in the real world.

3. Support

Nothing can make or break a life coach training experience like the customer support you receive (or not). This one is not that hard to assess. When you contact a training organization, do they reply? Amazingly, so many of them don’t! Can you call them and talk to a real person? Again, this isn’t an option at so many programs.

If they don’t reply to sales inquiries, what’s the likelihood they will respond when something goes wrong with your course? It’s also true that some life coaching courses do well in the sales department but somehow manage to disappear once they have your money. This is where reading detailed student reviews becomes important.

You will have questions, technical difficulties, billing issues, and more after you enroll. Make them prove they won’t forget you.

4. Community

Life coach training should change your life and not only because of what you learn. During your training journey, you can form friendships that last a lifetime. Every life coaching program should have a student community; a forum or Facebook group for students and trainers to connect. Of course, having such a community and doing it right are two different things.

A successful student community begins with leadership and organization. Anyone can set up a Facebook group and turn people loose. These groups often deteriorate quickly. The real potential of productive communities has to be intentionally created and maintained on a daily basis.

life coach training investment

5. Value

Life coach training value is a tricky topic. When you do the research, you’ll find price points all over the map. Some very expensive life coach courses claim attending their training is like getting a V.I.P. pass to fame and fortune, while others clearly land you in the cheap seats.

Your budget factors in here, of course. Still, don’t just enroll in an expensive training because it looks good. And do not take a cheap training at some fly-by-night outfit. In fact, don’t take a cheap training seriously at all. Too many resources go into creating and maintaining a quality training for the institute to offer bargain basement prices.

Begin your review of tuition costs assuming the price has little to do with the value you’ll receive (except for cheapie trainings that are no better than reading a book).

life coach marketing

6. Marketing

No doubt about it, you’re going to have to market yourself in one form or another if you’re going to make money as a life coach. This is a daunting task for so many people who are skilled at coaching but not at getting clients.

Some people seek employment after life coach certification, so the only marketing involved is making yourself an attractive employee. The majority of life coaches want to start their own coaching business and many of them have no idea what they’re getting into.

This is why it’s so important to get marketing training if you’re going to start your own business. Higher quality life coaching courses include the essential elements of starting a growing a life coaching practice.

If the training institute you choose does not teach marketing along with life coaching skill, and you have little experience in marketing then you need to make it part of your game plan.

life coach training and certification

7. Intangibles

Often the decision to enroll in a particular life coach certification course comes down to intangibles. The bottom line has to do with whether or not you like it. Liking anything is subjective and not so reliable when it comes to making comprehensive decisions.

Still, liking the course, the website, the trainers and the other students (for the most part) is a critical element of choosing the right course for you. This is where the training standards checklist becomes indispensable. You should put the course you like to the test by reviewing every other element of high-quality training in this post.

After ticking all the boxes in terms of accreditation, training quality, support, community, value, marketing, and other intangibles, does the training you like measure up? If not, you may regret liking it one day.