There are no shortage of programs offering online coaching education; there are hundreds and hundreds of coaching programs around the world. There are over 400 accredited International Coach Federation (ICF) programs, and there are countless others accredited by other organizations or not accredited at all. Of course, not all of these are online, but many of them are. Yes, online coach education is ubiquitous, which means you have to do some homework to find the one that fits your needs.
Do You Really Need Coach Training?
Well, the answer is yes…and no. Anyone can call themselves a coach, but it takes quite a bit more than that to be a good coach. A few decades ago, you could probably start coaching without any training and still attract and retain clients.
Can you imagine hiring a lawyer who didn’t go to law school? Well, it used to be quite commonplace, and it is still possible to become a lawyer and be admitted to the bar in seven states without going to law school. Many famous historical figures became lawyers without attending law school – John Jay, John Marshall, Clarence Darrow, and Abraham Lincoln. Before the mid-1880’s, there were no bar exams, so many lawyers did in fact, just call themselves lawyers without training or testing.
This is kind of where coaching is today. But, as loose at the requirements are, it wouldn’t be a wise move to just hang out a shingle and call yourself a coach – the industry has become too competitive and potential clients are looking for some sort of proof that coaches are qualified and possess the education to do the job right.
Finding the Right Online Coaching Education
Online coaching education varies greatly across the Internet. From quality to cost, there are many variables. It’s up to you to do your due diligence before you sign on the dotted line and hand over your cash.
What are Your Parameters?
The first thing to do is to figure out your parameters. What is your budget? What are your schedule limitations? Do you have a specific timeframe in which you need to get your certification? Knowing all this before you make a serious search will save you time and frustration.
What Type of Coach do You Want to Be?
Figuring out what type of coach you want to be is critical to your choice of coaching programs. Though much of the online coaching education is general, there are plenty of specific online coaching programs that may fits your needs. You want to be a health coach? Look for a program that specializes in and offers certifications for health coaching. You want to become a money coach? It’s best to make sure your program specializes in financial coaching
Look for Accreditation.
Though some unaccredited online coaching education is of a high quality, it is still best to look for a coaching program that has an accreditation from one of the main governing bodies in the coaching profession. This means the program has met specific standards and is virtually guaranteed to be comprehensive and of high quality.
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