Due to the burgeoning popularity and growth of the coaching industry, there are several coaching credentials that exist today. If you are seeking certification as a new life coach starting out in the field, I am sure finding out what type of credentials are available for you is one of the top things on your mind.
Is a Life Coaching Credential Mandatory?
The short answer is “NO.” However, many in the field will argue It should be mandatory for life coaches to have coaching credentials if they want to be respected and considered an expert in the field. Some state that “after all, other helping professions require licensing and/or certification to be considered an expert in their profession. These individuals definitely have a point, but the bottom line is that because the coaching field still remains unregulated, anyone can pretty much identify him or herself as a life coach (no law against that). A coaching credential is not mandatory and may be unnecessary depending on your coaching niches if you are self-employed and organizations you work for or work with.
For those who desire to obtain coaching certification, I would say there are some benefits to achieving that. For example, according to the ICF, their coaching credential demonstrates a high level of effectiveness in coaching. Many coaching professionals believe that having a coaching credential is a wise investment: one that leads to new opportunities for you as the coaching industry continues to soar. Secondly, obtaining a credential in life coaching sets you apart from your competitors. Another benefit of a coaching credential is you will be able to gain the skills, strategies, and confidence that will help your clients to succeed.
Are There Coaching Credentials Available For Life Coaches in The United States?
Are there coaching credentials available for life coaches in the US? Yes, they are. Due to the expansion of the coaching field, many organizations offering certifications have emerged on the scene. And so I will advise you to take extreme caution when doing your research. In the United States, there are a few recognized and well respected credentialing organizations that offer coaching certifications to professional life coaches.
1. The International Coach Federation (ICF) – Offers the following credentials
• Associate Certified Coach (ACC)
• Professional Certified Coach (PCC)
• Master Certified Coach (MCC)
2. The International Association of Coaching (IAC)
• Masteries Practitioner designation
• Certified Masteries Coach (CMC)
• Master Masteries Coach (MMC)
3. The Center for Credentialing and Education (CCE)
• Board Certified Coach (BCC)
The CCE offers BCC applicants the opportunity to apply for specialty designations that emphasizes an area of expertise. Personal/Life Coach is one of the four specialty designations they offer.
4. International Christian Coaching Association (ICCA)
• Board Certified Christian Life Coach (BCCLC)
• Board Certified Advanced Christian Life Coach (BCACLC)
• Board Certified Master Christian Life Coach (BCMCLC)
• Board Certified Professional Christian Life Coach (BCPCLC)
5. Christian Coaches Network International
• Certified Christian Coach (CCC)
• Certified Professional Christian Coach (CPCC)
• Certified Master Christian Coach (CMCC)
There are undoubtedly several credential organizations and institutions offering coaching credentials for life coaches here in the United States. However, I will strongly encourage you to consider the credential entities listed above or other recognized ones not included in this article before you make your ultimate decision. All the best to you!
Writer, Coaches Training Blog community