If you have been searching the internet for something, you will usually end up with a life coach site popping up in your results at some point. Life Coaching has evolved over the years and continues to change and grow – but what is life coaching, how do you choose a life coach, and what should you be aware of?
Life Coaching Past:
Life Coaching really emerged noticeably about 10 years ago. Most life coaching was advertised as Executive Coaching or Leadership Coaching, and corporations usually hired them for the staff or individual training. With the onset of in-house corporate training teams, the need for Executive Coaches diminished, and many sought other areas to continue coaching in. Since then, there are now life coaches that coach in every area of life you can think of and then some. Many life coaches specialize in one or two main living areas but many.
Still coach in multiple life areas. Originally, life coaches were people who had some previous work experience before going into coaching. Most Executive Coaches came out of the corporate business world and made high incomes as Executive Coaches or Leadership Coaches. Many of these past Executive Coaches also have become Client Attraction or Marketing Coaches in today’s climate. Their services are provided to corporations still but mostly too small or solo businesses or individuals.
Life Coaching Now:
Life coaching is common, easy to find, and is for businesses and individuals, and can be called just about anything. Today, there are many life coach training schools, but there are huge disparities between the qualities of education students receive from school to school. In fact, there are no required educational standards that a life coach school must follow/provide, and there is no regulation of the life coach industry.
Anyone can call themselves a Life Coach and open a practice-buyer, beware a severe phrase to remember. There are now a couple of professional organizations, such as the International Coaching Federation, which as a professional membership organization, is working diligently to establish coaching standards, life coach school standards, and looking at types of regulations that could benefit the industry and consumers Net Maddy.
There are now between 10,000 and 20,000 life coaches that are providing services to customers. There is an increasing number of people pursuing becoming a life coach. Many people want to help others, but many think they can earn a tremendous amount of money while working at home in their PJs, part-time. If only it were that easy. Today’s world of having a web-based business and all it entails has become very complicated, and it isn’t as cheap in start-up costs either. Most life coaches earn much less than $20,000 a year because they don’t have enough clients. Many coaches fail because you have to be a person who can structure your own time while working from home.
When you work in a business, it provides the structure that you work within. At home, there is no structure except what a person creates, and it is all too easy not to be structured. Marketing has become a huge part of daily life for life coaches, much more than ever before, and many have taken marketing to an incredible level of hard selling. Those ‘coaches’ providing marketing or small business start-up coaching have created a huge income-based industry, but it has also gained tremendous competition over the last few years.
Niche Is In:
Niche in life coaching is the current theme – this means that a life coach ‘specializes’ in one or a few areas only. However, many life coaches still would be considered general life coaches and offer a much broader range of coaching services. The market is pushing life coaches to have specific niches quite hard and explains that the public prefers ‘specialists’ and is willing to pay more for them. It is like the medical profession; you have generalists, generalists with a smaller focus, specialists with a broad focus, and specialists with particular focus topics. So, everyone entering coaching is told to have a niche; it could be life coaching, client attraction, marketing, public relations, Christian, organization, health, financial, and many more areas that ‘coaching’ is being offered.
Throughout my research, I was totally amazed at how few life coaches will post their prices and, perhaps even more importantly; they do not post their educational or work experience! I don’t know about you, but I’m not really interested in sharing my dreams and goals with someone unless they are qualified. That means having work, life, and educational experience in their ‘niche’ or coaching areas. I’ve asked many other coaches, some of whom are very well known and successful, and have been told that education and experience are not important!
So, I guess from that, if someone worked at the local animal shelter and didn’t graduate from high school, they are just as well qualified to provide life coaching services to everyone else. NOT in my book. We check out loads of information before buying a car, choosing a doctor, and even before we purchase a mattress. Why wouldn’t it mean something about what education and work/life experience a life coach has? So, buyer beware!
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