Thoughts on Life Coaching

I have always been incredibly lucky (really, Guyded) when choosing training. When I became a Reflexologist in 1998, I had no idea that the school I chose was the founding institution for modern Reflexology. In order to receive my Reflexology certification, I had to attend 100 hours of live training and document 100 hours of practice. Compare that to my Hot Stone Massage Certification (notice it’s not listed) that required me to watch videos and turn in signatures from three people saying I had performed Hot Stone Massage on them.

There are certifications that mean something, and there are certifications that aren’t worth wasting paper for printing. Life Coaching certification is no different. There are people who innocently tout “Certified Life Coach” as their title, because they’ve watched 20 hours worth of videos from someone who put together a training program.

That’s a big difference from the ICF minimum standard for Life Coaching which required:

  • 60 hours of training
    • An approved institution or with robust documentation
      • If the coach was not trained by an approved institution, they must also pass a performance evaluation of actual audio recording and written transcript of a coaching session
  • 10 hours of mentor coaching
    • A mentor coach has listened to the coach candidate with clients and has coached the candidate on their coaching
  • 100 hours of demonstrated coaching
    • At least 75 hours compensated to demonstrate professional capacity
  • Successful completion of the ICF Coach Knowledge Assessment

Note, this is the minimum.

ICF (International Coach Federation) credentials are something to be proud of and I earned the PCC (Professional Certified Coach) designation with an additional 65 hours of training and additional 650 hours of documented coaching that required the same criteria as above. They have since lowered the standard to 500 hours of coaching if specific criteria are met.

I’m proud to say that I’ve already completed the 200 hours of training required to apply for the ICF MCC (Master Certified Coach) and have logged the required 2,500+ hours of professional coaching experience. The performance evaluation is mandatory at this level and requires submission of two coaching calls with transcripts.

If you see MCC after a coach’s name, they have achieved the Gold Standard of coaching. There are only 747 MCCs in the world as of June 2016. That is 4% of ICF credentialed coaches, and the top 1% of coaches in the world. It is truly an elite group. My application was submitted Fall of 2017 and approved Fall 2018.

As I said, I was lucky (Guyded) to have started with an ICF approved school in the first place. I didn’t know anything about the profession of coaching when I embarked on this path, yet I found myself at Coach for Life, the original spiritually-based, accredited coach training organization. I had no idea that co-founder of Coach for Life, Peter J. Reding, was also one of the founding members of the Association for Coach Training Organizations (ACTO). I’m fortunate to have him as my mentor. I’m blessed to claim him as my spiritual father. I’ve been honored to serve as a training facilitator for Coach for Life since 2014. Yes, I train life coaches for an elite school. I know a bit about coach training. As with any knowledge base, the more I know, the more I know that there is to know. It’s humbling.

Take from it what you will on the value of certification.

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