Have you ever faced a situation where you outlined action steps to achieve a goal but had to step back because something didn’t go as planned? And even after seeking help from friends and family, it doesn’t feel enough.
That's where a life coach comes in. These coaches help people define what they aim to achieve, what steps they’ve taken so far, and what they could do more to succeed in their endeavors.
Learn why you should become a life coach, how much a life coach certification costs, why the certification is essential, and the tools of the trade.
The most common first step to become a life coach is to obtain a certification. If you want to work as a part-time coach, choose a brief training program that costs less than $1,000. But, if you aim to pursue it as a full-time career, you can take an in-depth graduate life coaching curriculum, which can cost $10,000 or more. Accredited independent organizations such as the International Coaching Federation (ICF) are a trusted choice.
Consider travel costs, how much time you're willing to put into training, and school accreditation. You could choose an online course to reduce travel expenses and study at your convenience.
Why you should get certified as a life coach
Not only do clients find it easier to trust certified life coaches, but earning a certification also trains you to be a credible professional. Here are some other reasons why you should take a course:
- Competition: There’s a high chance that your peers are also certified coaches, and securing your own levels the playing field. And, if your certification involves a higher degree of training and specialization, you have a competitive edge.
- Credibility: A certification shows clients you're an expert in the industry, making them feel comfortable during a coaching session.
- Investment: If you're concerned about the high cost of a life coaching certification, don’t worry because it pays for itself by attracting new clients. Think of certification as more of an investment than an expense.
How to choose the right certification course
Selecting a life coaching certification program is like researching before buying a product. You can look through available options and enroll in the one that best meets your needs. Consider the following when choosing a life coaching certification:
- Duration: A provider offering self-paced online courses or night and weekend options may be a better choice if you have a full-time job. But, if you have plenty of time, traveling to in-person training may offer a more comprehensive experience.
- Content: When you launch your business and meet with your first client, you want to be prepared. Life coach training programs with well-rounded curriculums educate you on strength-based approaches, different ways to ask questions, and client relationships. And, if you pick a particular niche, like workplace wellness, you can opt for a specialized certification.
- Format: Do you learn better in a group or one-on-one environment? Or do you prefer the face-to-face connection of in-person classes or the convenience of online courses? Pick a program that matches your preferred learning style to better absorb the information.
- Teachers or trainers: Faculty who specialize in different areas or possess an uncommon outlook can give you a more comprehensive learning experience. Instructors with varied traits can also pave the way for connections within the coaching industry, giving you a head start on your way to success.
- Reviews: Talk to graduates and read testimonials when selecting the right certification program. Alumni can share honest experiences about the coursework and how it advanced their careers –– all of which can zero in on positive or negative patterns to locate the programs with the best track records.
Tools of the trade
Like any specialized profession, life coaching uses particular tools and techniques, including the following:
- CRM software: A customer relationship management (CRM) software can streamline all client interactions by digitally tracking them. The cost of CRM varies based on users and features and starts at around $12 per month for a small business. When you're looking to better serve clients, Practice's platform simplifies daily tasks, helping you quickly respond to requests and grow your business.
- Computer equipment: When you run a coaching business, computer equipment serves as your operations center, where you communicate with clients, schedule sessions, and manage payments. Dependable technology can go a long way toward making your life easier and your business more efficient. You can purchase a quality laptop for around $300 and a good printer for about $100.
- Payment management system: If you manually charge clients for coaching services, you might end up spending a lot of your valuable time. A payment management system does the tedious work of handling invoices for you, enabling you to focus on coaching. Some payment management systems cost as low as $15 a month.
- Social media management: Keeping up with messages and mentions on all your social media handles can be overwhelming. Pick a social media management app to evaluate, manage, and automate your accounts. Some apps begin at $6 per month.
The bottom line
While we agree that earning a certification and obtaining tools and equipment are expensive, they make you credible. After all, clients want to seek support from the best life coach. And, if you're ready to begin a fulfilling career as a life coach, Practice has the resources to guide you every step of the way. From our comprehensive library of articles on coaching and professional development to our online invoicing software, we'll help your new business start strong and gain momentum. Try us today.