Becoming a Life Coach

By ACS Distance Education on January 31, 2019 in Careers, Jobs Success & Psychology | comments
Life coaches offer general coaching across all areas of life, supporting a wide range of clients in areas such as work/life balance, getting a new job, going back to work after a break and so on.
Some may focus on a particular group. eg. coaching retirees to deal with retirement, teenagers to cope with change etc.  

Scope of Work

Life coaches need a sound understanding clients to:

  • devise quick and accurate assessments.
  • set realistic, achievable and sustainable goals.
  • identify their clients’ unique skills.

A life coaches most common tasks include:

  • Meeting clients to evaluate them and discuss their needs and goals.
  • Formulating strategies to help clients reach goals and improve lives.
  • Motivating their clients to improve their lives.
  • Keeping records for each client and their progress
  • Monitor - discussing and reviewing progress;  adjust client strategy if required.

People who use life coaches include:

  • Business executives and Entrepreneurs
  • Companies looking to improve productivity/sales and/or staff relationships, to develop leadership, team building skills and improve motivation.
  • Individuals with relationship problems.
  • Individuals who want to improve their work and home life.

What You Need to Learn

Life coaches need a sound understanding of their client's needs:

  • Assessments - quick and accurate assessments of client's skill sets, needs
  • Coaching skills - goal setting, strategies to enhance performance, goal adjustments
  • Coaching theory - coaching behaviour therapy, SMART goals, wellness vision
  • Planning - formulating strategies to help clients reach their goals and improve their lives
  • Motivation skills - use of praise, encouragement, targets, advising, mentoring
  • Record keeping - discussing client progress, benchmarks, improvements, monitoring progress
  • Communication skills - verbal, non-verbal, interviewing, educating clients, interpersonal skills
  • General knowledge - a good all round knowledge
  • Personal skills - commitment, self-discipline, patience, enthusiasm, flexibility, innovation, charisma, positivity

Starting a Career

Start by developing broad skills that relate to all aspects of life - personal, work and financial to physical and emotional health and wellbeing. Do this through your own life experience as well as learning -formal an/or informal.

Some study may be necessary to understand the life coaching role, and how to fulfill such a role. Life coaches are mostly self employed so you need to develop:

  • Attitude and skills to successfully run a business
  • Networking and visibility to attract clients

Life coaches work with a variety of clients that include people who want to improve their lives to those that are looking to make major adjustments.

Progressing a Career

  • Life coaches often move from other sectors into life coaching or extend their life-coaching into specified areas.  
  • Business executives that see a need for life coaching of individuals or groups within the business world.
  • People within family services that want to work more closely with families and their needs.
  • People from other sectors such as health and fitness that want to add to what they offer their clients.
  • People working in other coaching sectors that want to expand.
  • The best way to increase your job opportunities as a life coach is by networking and making people aware of your existence:
  • Continuous learning is  key to progressing in any career. Learn through experience and PD courses, attending seminars, conferences and workshops.
  • Networking also helps to improve career and business opportunities – developing contacts and raising industry awareness.