Management & Leadership

The value of a personal coach and how to become one

Mar 03, 2019
Personal coach

A career in personal coaching provides the opportunity to make a profound difference in people’s lives. Here’s how to become a personal coach.

Key takeaways

  • The personal coaching industry has topped $1 billion in the US and continues to rise, making it an industry rife with opportunity
  • Personal coaches bring profound change to people’s lives by assisting them to determine what their goals are, motivating them to pursue said goals and helping them become aware of who they are at their core
  • You can prepare yourself for a career as a personal coach by getting yourself qualified with an ICF-accredited coaching course

As of 2018, the personal coaching industry has topped $1 billion in the US, and continues to grow, illustrating the immense value attached to the services of personal coaches. More and more people are turning to life coaches to help them progress in their personal and professional lives.

Personal coaches bring profound change to people’s lives

The International Coaching Federation (ICF) defines coaching as “partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximise their personal and professional potential.” In other words, the purpose of coaching is to assist clients to unlock their inner potential and achieve their goals.

For those who feel like they are treading water; doing all the right things yet not arriving where they intend to be; a life coach can introduce a new perspective. They can also be of benefit to people who appear perfectly happy with where they are, as those people are more likely to be open to the personal growth that a life coach can cultivate.

Personal coaching has the following primary goals:

  • Develop a relationship with the client that is built on trust
  • Help the client develop a clear vision of their future, and the goals they want to achieve
  • Help the client recognise their strengths and weaknesses, and learn how to play to their strengths
  • Help the client develop self-confidence and the will to pursue their goals
  • Hold the client to account; pushing them to work at achieving their personal goals. The primary purpose of a coach, after all, is to provide motivation
  • Help the client build resilience by learning to treat failure as a learning process rather than a character flaw.
  • Help the client become aware of who they are at their core, shedding the layers of who they think they ought to be.

Personal coach or a counsellor?

You might be thinking that many of these goals overlap with those of a therapist, but a personal coach fulfills an entirely different purpose. The counsellor provides a safe space for the client to air their insecurities, and explore themselves on a deeper level, in particular the elements of their past that may be affecting them in the present.

The purpose of the life coach is to assist the client determine their goals, and motivate them to achieve them. One employs the services of a personal coach for the same reason they hire any coach; so that they know there will be someone there to hold them accountable and provide the support they need.

How do I become a personal coach?

Pursuing a career as a personal coach provides you with the opportunity to make a profound difference in people’s lives. There is immense satisfaction to be had in seeing people grow and fulfill their potential. Furthermore, it’s a burgeoning industry with no shortage of career opportunities, as well as the option to run your own coaching practice.

Get qualified

As John Kim LMFT, author, speaker, life coach and co-founder of JRNI Life Coaching Certification and the Catalyst Life Coaching Intensive, writes: “Life coaching is a craft and takes practice and education, like any other profession. You need a foundational know-how before you can coach.”

SACAP offers a range of coaching courses, all of which are International Coaching Federation (ICF) accredited and COMENSA aligned. Their courses include a combination of rigorous academic theory with practical skills, workplace experience and self-development, so as to ensure you graduate with the knowledge and skills necessary to make an immediate impact.

Since SACAP is also a psychology college, they’re able to incorporate the principles of applied psychology into their coaching courses, providing students with additional skill sets that will serve them well in their coaching career.

Courses on offer that will help pave the way for a career as a life coach include:

Postgraduate Diploma in Coaching: part-time, two-year qualification.

Coach Practitioner Programme: short learning programme that serves as a pathway to continue into SACAP’s Advanced Coach Practitioner Programme.

Advanced Coach Practitioner Programme: six month, short learning programme that qualifies you to pursue a career as a professional coach practitioner.

If you’re interested in pursuing a coaching course, or seek additional information on the life coaching profession and what it entails, you can enquire now with SACAP.

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