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Monday, August 27, 2007

Coaching is controversial. Not because getting coaching will have a significant impact on your life. It will.

Coaching is controversial because coaching as a service is not standardized and no universal coaching regulatory standard exists.

As a result, anyone -- and I mean anyone -- can call themselves a coach and take on clients.

According to Rey Carr, of the Canadian group Peer Resources, there are more than 65 distinct coaching credentials. The systems used to grant these credentials vary. Some are competency-based, some require hours of training, others require supervision by someone who already has the credential, some rely on self-assessment, some can be obtained without ever coaching a client; and some are blatantly based on simply proclaiming oneself a coach. The self-reported largest of these credentialing systems: the International Coach Federation, the International Association of Coaching and the European Coaching Institute all have different requirements for accreditation.

These self-appointed accreditation bodies and the liberal use of the terms 'certification' and 'credentialing' throughout the coaching industry only confuse the public.

While in theory certification protects the public, the current group of arbitrary designations create a profession with no integrity.

It’s little more than a marketing tool.

So what’s the coach to do? What‘s the consumer to do?

Prospective coaches: The best certification you can get is a college diploma. You need degrees in business or psychology. Ignore credential and certification programs, no matter how deceptive they may be with powerful words like universal registered coaching certification. If you attend a coach training program do so because of the content and skills offered and not because of the letters you get afterward.

Prospective clients: Ask about the credentials of a coach.  Ignore the alphabet soup of credentials after a person's name.  Do they have COLLEGE degrees in business or psychology?  If you wouldn't let a person with a college degree in philosophy and a certificate from the intergalactic council of dentistry go poking around you mouth, don't let a person without a business degree go poking around your business or a person without a psychology degree go poking around your life -- even if they list I.C.C. after their name because they have a certificate from the interplanetary coaching commission.

©2007 True Azimuth, LLC
Business Coaching, Relationship Coaching, Life Coaching