Become a Life Coach
We hear a lot about coaches today – wellness coaches, sports coaches, nutritional coaches.
Life coaching is another popular one, and life coaching is a growth industry.
In the four year period between 2015 and 2019, there was a 33% increase in the number of life coaches worldwide.
It is estimated that by the end of this year, life coaching will be a $20 billion dollar industry.
Research by PwC also found that life coaching was the second fastest growth industry in the world.
There really is a lot of potential there for careers in life coaching!
As you are ready this article, you have probably already considered becoming a life coach. So before going any further, the first thing to consider is – can you answer yes to these questions?
- Are you a good listener?
- Do you like working with people?
- Are you a people person?
- Do you have a passion to help other people change their lives?
If you can answer yes to all of them, then why not consider becoming a life coach?
What do life coaches do?
Life coaches help people to find a better life. They help people to lead more fulfilled lives.
Life coaches do not look at the past in the way a counsellor might, but look at the here and now and the future. A person comes to a life coach as they want to change their life and the life coach is there to help them.
This may include things such as –
- work/life balance
- losing weight
- gaining promotion
- changing careers
- returning to work after illness or having a baby
And much, much more.
How Do Life Coaches Work?
A life coach may set up their own business and work for themselves. That is the main way in which life coaches tend to work.
However, life coaches can also work in other ways.
For example -
- Working as a coach for a larger organisation
- Using coaching skills as part of their existing job role
Can you become a life coach?
Life coaches come from many diverse backgrounds. They may have worked as
- in retail
And many other fields. There is no set way to get into life coaching. It is about your skills and drive to succeed.
If you have answered yes to the questions above, then yes you can.
How do you become a life coach?
There are several steps to becoming a life coach. Let’s take a look at them now.
Step 1 - Your Skills
We have already talked about some of the skills required to be a life coach –
- Being good with people
- Being a good listener
- Wanting to help people to change
Now consider if you have other skills that a life coach will find useful. For example –
- Business skills
- Sales skills
- Good networking skills
- Marketing skills
- Leadership skills
- Good communication skills
This may sound like a lot. It might feel quite intimidating but with the right training and knowledge, you can train to become a successful life coach.
But the first step really is to take a life coaching course.
Step 2 – Do you need a niche?
Now consider, do you want to focus on a niche area of life coaching or be a general life coach? A life coach can work in a range of areas -
- Some life coaches will focus on niche clients right from the start.
- Over time they might expand away from that niche and move into other areas.
- Other will become general life coaches and stick to that.
- Some will start off as general life coaches, but then gradually focus on a niche area.
A niche is a specialised segment of an industry.
For example, a life coach may want to focus on helping teenagers in their careers, so they focus their life coaching on this area.
Another life coach may set up as a general life coach and help any clients that come their way with whatever problems and issues that they may have.
So, consider, do you need a niche?
- Do you have specialist knowledge or expertise that you can share with others? For example, in careers, health and fitness, nutrition, business, working with adolescents?
- Do you have a particular interest in working in a niche area?
- Have you overcome obstacles and difficulties in your life and want to share these ideas with others?
If you do, then starting off as a niche life coach may be the way for you to go. If you are not sure, then setting up as a general life coach may be a good starting point.
Whichever you decide, also consider, one of the reasons for becoming a life coach is presumably to earn an income.
If you have a specific niche and focus, you also need to consider if this is financially viable. If your niche is too narrow and focussed, you may find it hard to get enough clients, unless you plan to travel around the country.
Step 3 – Starting Your Coaching
Once you have
- decided on your niche.
- undertaken a life coaching course.
Now you are ready to start your own business.
How you set up that business will depend on where you live. But consider –
- What type of business should you be? For example, a company, a sole trader, a freelancer, a partnership? If you are not sure, look online. Seek advice.
- Will you set up your business in an office or meet clients in their own home or in other places, such as coffee shops?
- Do you require insurance? For example, public liability insurance, professional indemnity, cyber liability insurance. Again, seek advice on what insurance you require, depending on how you set up your business.
- What other costs will you incur? For example – rent, phone costs, stationary, printing costs, travel, marketing etc.
This is by no means an exhaustive list, but should give you an insight into the type of costs you may incur.
Step 4 - Your Services
This is an important step – How will you offer your services and how much will you charge for them?
How Will You Meet Your Clients?
As we said above, will you meet your clients in your own offices, in a coffee shop, will you go to their home?
Some life coaches may also offer other services, such as walking and coaching services. When deciding on how to meet your clients, remember to consider your own safety.
If you are meeting people in their own home or in another location, make sure that someone else knows where you are and who you are meeting.
If deciding to rent an office space, also consider the cost implications of this.
How Much Will You Charge?
If you are working as a coach to make money, you need to ensure that you cover your costs at least, and more than cover them to make a profit.
Take time to consider the costs you have, such as –
- Internet and Wi-Fi costs
- Phone costs
- Marketing costs
There may also be other costs incurred. The costs you incur will depend on how you run your business. So do spend time to consider the costs you will incur running this business.
As well, consider your time.
If you decide to charge a certain amount for an hour’s session, remember, you also need to think about the time you are spending. How much do you want to earn an hour?
So, you need to cover your costs AND decide how much you want to make an hour.
As well as considering how much you charge per session, you might also consider other points. For example –
- Will you offer a discount if people choose to book more than one session?
- Will you offer a discount for clients who recommend another client?
- Discounts for new customers?
Other things to consider -
- How long will sessions last?
- Look online at other life coaches in your local area, or those in a similar niche to you. Look at what they are charging. Do your research.
- Will you offer sessions online or face to face or a mixture of both? There is no right answer here. It really depends on what suits you and your clients.
- What if people cancel or do not give you enough notice? Will you still charge them?
Step 5 – Getting Clients
- Word of mouth is a good way to get clients. Try offering free or reduced sessions to people you know. Ask them to write you recommendations and share their experiences with others.
- Face to face networking can be a good way to get new clients. Join relevant clubs and organisations. For example, business breakfast clubs, Chambers of Commerce etc.
- Online networking – join relevant organisations and online forums
- Write blogs and posts on social media
- Develop an online presence by promoting your website and services
There is no right way to become a life coach. How you work as a life coach will depend on
- your interests and skills
- the clients you want to work with
- how you want to work eg. online, face to face
We are not saying that becoming a life coach is easy. It isn’t. It can be a lot of hard work, but as a life coach, you can -
- Help people to change and develop, to help them to live their lives the way that they want to.
- Gain job satisfaction in this highly rewarding career.
- Set up your own business in this growth industry.
- Be your own boss, working in a way that suits you.
- Be rewarded for your own hard work.
If you want to become a life coach, then the first step is to undertake an online life coaching course.
ACS Distance Education offers various life coaching training options -
Life Coaching Course – a 100 hour self-paced online course.
Certificate in Life Coaching Course – The certificate consists of six 100 hour modules. Again, it is studied online and is self-paced. It features 4 core modules :
PLUS 2 elective modules from a list of 12 modules.
Or you can study a Certificate in Business and Life Coaching Course, providing you with the ability to focus on life and business coaching.
If you are not sure which is the best course to start with, please get in touch with our specialist tutors, who are more than happy to help.