What is Career Coaching?
Career coaches work with people who wish to improve their work satisfaction, advance within their field, transition into a new field re-join the work force or make a career transition.   Our founder and director Marcia Bench describes it best – “Career coaching is an interactive process of exploring work-related issues — leading to effective action — in which the coach acts as both a catalyst and facilitator of individual and, in turn, organizational development and transformation…”

Career coaches can do everything from helping people identify their ideal career to dealing with a layoff.  We help people who wish to do their dream job now that they’ve “retired” from their 9 – 5 position, help mothers re-entering the work force and work with executives who want to be CEO’s.    We help clients develop a terrific resume, write a killer cover letter, hit a grand slam in the interview and negotiate for the best compensation package.   . What type of coaching you do, and with whom, is up to you.  This is a young field and you can design your coaching career to fit your life.

How does your program work?
Our training is delivered in a blended learning approach, using textbook, workbook, webinars, and online quizzes. Once you enroll, you’ll receive an e-mail with thorough instructions about how to access the program.  Your materials will be mailed and you should have them within a few days unless you are outside the U.S.
Are you ICF certified (or ICF accredited or ICF approved)?
We are not officially accredited by the ICF, and most of our graduates find the Certified Career Coach credential adequate for their needs.  However, if you wish to also become certified through ICF, you can do so through the Portfolio Application, and we will provide the paperwork you need to include the CCI course. Other classes can also be applied toward ICF requirements as long as you attend at least 80% of the hours you submit live via webinar. See the ICF web site at: for further details.
What makes you unique? How do I choose the right school?
The main thing that sets Career Coach Institute apart from every other school is this: we literally invented the niche of career coaching in 2001, blending coaching with career development using Founder Marcia Bench’s extensive background.  We “wrote the book” on the subject, “Career Coaching: An Insider’s Guide” – used not only in our program but in college courses throughout North America.  We were the first and are the leading career coach training and certification program in the world.

There are over 500 coach training programs in existence today. Which one is right for you? If you are evaluating different coach training programs, I want to give you some criteria or elements you absolutely, positively must have in any coach training solution you buy:

  • Does it offer training in your desired niche? To choose a coach training program, you must first evaluate what kind of a coach you want to be.  There are dozens of coaching specialties (e.g., life coaching, retirement coaching, executive coaching, spiritual coaching, career coaching) and hundreds of potential target client markets.  A key to success is narrowing your focus, and that begins with your coach training!  You must also evaluate what knowledge you may have already obtained about your desired specialty (e.g., college degree or on-the-job training) and how coach training can supplement that – or if you have none, then be sure your coach training program is designed for beginners.
  • What is the school’s history? In 2000, there were only 15 coach training schools in existence, and now there are over 600.  Many have emerged in just the past few years.  Does the school you are considering have a history of sound business practices and a track record of success, or has it just opened its doors?  If possible, email or talk with graduates of the school to find out what the training is like, how satisfied they were with their training, and similar questions.
  • Does the school offer a recognized certification? The “gold standard” for certification is that of the International Coach Federation (ICF), but there are more than 65 bodies that accredit coaches.  What credentials are most important to your clients?  If you work mainly with corporate clients, ICF certification may be required.  But if you work, for example, with people in job transition or clients with relationship challenges, they may not be as concerned with what certification you have as whether you instill confidence that you can help them reach desired results.
  • What are the qualifications of the founder, leadership, and instructors? To teach coaching, people must have generally completed coach training themselves and/or be credentialed by a recognized body.  If our young industry suffers from any obstacles, it is lack of coach-specific training prior to one calling oneself a coach.  If the coach training company’s staff are former managers, therapists, software engineers or other unrelated profession and have not obtained coach training as well, question their credibility to teach you how to coach.
  • Does the program fit your learning style? Coach training is offered in a variety of media, from in-person training over several years to webinars (by phone), webinars (interactive web-based live classes) and distance or e-learning.  How do you learn best?  Even if you are considering a webinar program and have never experienced telephone learning, see if you can attend a free preview of the program to see if the delivery fits your style.  Distance learning and e-learning are emerging training methodologies well accepted in the training world, and are accepted by the ICF for 20 percent of your coach training hours.
  • What is the true cost of your training? The published tuition rate may not include incidental charges that add significant sums to your total investment.  If you choose an in-person training, you will also need to calculate travel expenses to attend, such as airfare, hotel, and meals not included with your tuition.  For webinars, or live classes with follow-up telephone exercises, you will need to factor in your long distance charges.  Finally, many programs (as well as ICF certification) require that you obtain mentor coaching.  Is there an additional cost for that?  That must also be included to calculate the total cost of your training.
  • What is graduation/completion/certification rate? Enrolling in coach training is one thing, but completing the course and getting certified are two different things – or can be!  You should ask the staff: (a) what percentage of their students complete the training? (b) what percentage of students continue to get certified (and what are the requirements)? (c) what do people do with their coach training once they finish?
  • Does your learning stop once you complete the course? Making the decision to become a coach can be thought of as entering a lifestyle of learning and growth.  Successful coaches frequently engage in additional training to update and freshen their skills.  Does your school continue to update you on trends in your niche and/or offer continuing education courses for your re-certification as well as professional development?
  • Does the school support you in setting up and growing a successful business (if that is your plan)? Most programs teach some variety of coaching, but don’t give you hands-on assistance in choosing a business name, using the internet effectively, demonstrating what marketing strategies the successful coaches use, and help you launch and grow a practice that is successful!  Only a small percentage of coaches in practice today are “making it” financially — largely because they don’t have the guidance and support of someone who is successful teaching them how to do it.
  • Clarify the financial and business policies of the school. Finally, be sure to inquire about the refund policy (including any prorating that may be done), as well as dispute resolution processes in the event a student is dissatisfied.  Reputable schools will be happy to disclose this information.
What is the difference between career coaching and career counseling or therapy?
This question arises frequently, and there is no standard answer since different people define these functions different ways. We always answer it (best we can!) in the free preview webinars. Simply put, the best counselors and consultants have the right answers for their clients, but the best coaches ask the best questions to help their clients find their own answers. In addition:

  • Coaching is more results-oriented, empowers and draws from client, and is short-term, uses assessments sparingly, no degree required but practical, specific training recommended; coaches generally work in half-hour sessions over the phone and bill by the month
  • Counseling is directed by counselor, has stated agenda, uses more assessments, and can get into therapeutic applications; counselor must have Master’s degree in counseling in 48 of the 50 US states; counselors usually work face to face in one-hour segments and bill by the hour
  • Practice Development Coaching involves passing along skills and knowledge from one experienced person to another. While coaching methods may be used in the Practice Development Coaching process, it is more directive than pure coaching
When do the next classes start?
You can enroll in your Career Coach Training at any time! Our basic course can be completed in your home, using textbook, workbook, and online webinars. The remaining portions of the class are taught via “webinar,” conducted as an interactive conference call over the phone. You need nothing other than an internet connection (to receive the materials via email ahead of time) and a phone line to participate. Once you enroll, you will be provided with the telephone bridge numbers for each call. Our live 12-week webinars are offered no more than once a year. Details are provided to you when you enroll.
Can I make a good living as a career coach (variation: if I live in a small town)?
The short answer is “yes”! But it takes good planning, a solid business and marketing plan, and confidence to do so! Most of our graduates begin billing clients $300 or more per month for 4 half-hour sessions (plus optional additional services) and go up from there, so with just 10 clients you make $3000 per month. And with the new innovative bundled pricing strategies we teach, you can reach a 6-figure coaching practice within 1-2 years! Our practice-building classes are designed to help you build a successful practice by doing what the successful coaches do. Your hours and the kinds of clients with whom you work will determine your gross revenues substantially. Another variable is other activities that provide additional profit centers, such as selling assessments, writing and selling books and e-books, speaking for pay, etc.
Are my training expenses tax deductible?
The deductibility of your training expenses will depend on your situation, and you should consult an accountant for advice. Generally, the cost of learning an entirely new profession is not deductible in the U.S., but continuing education expenses usually are deductible.
What are the graduation/certification requirements?

The basic program requires that you complete all 12 modules of the career coach training program.  This includes primarily watching the 12 video modules for the course on the Virtual Learning Community.  Completing these modules will require reading select chapters from Marcia Bench’s 408-page textbook, “Career Coaching: An Insider’s Guide,” for each session; completing exercises in the study guide, doing an online feedback form for each class, and completing a quiz on each of the chapters of the text.  Optional audio learning materials are provided containing Audio Lectures and Coaching Demonstrations. Upon completion of all 26 quizzes, you then request a password to the Final Examination (also online). You must score at least 75% on the Final Examination to graduate from the self-paced training. Other elements of the CCC certification include 50 practice hours of coaching with friends or other contacts, some of which can be paid coaching if desired.

What payment plans are available?

We accept all major credit cards as well as electronic checks and Paypal Credit for the program. To fit your budget, we also provide payment plans which may spread payment out between 3 and 6 months. Details are provided on the registration pages at

Is career coaching a legitimate field to get into?
Coaching is growing quickly as an industry. There are more than 100,000 coaches currently practicing, with an annual growth estimated at 20-30% per year. The occupational outlook handbook has listed coaching/consulting as a field that is growing faster than most. The primary professional organization for coaches, the International Coach Federation ( is adding hundreds of  members per MONTH to its membership.

Virtually all of the national business press has featured articles on coaching in the past 2-3 years, and many organizations are beginning to offer coaching to their employees, particularly at the senior executive level. Not only is coaching “legitimate;” you will be getting in on the beginning of the growth curve of a dynamic new (about 20 years old) field.

I’m already a career counselor [or coach], can I challenge the portions that deal with what I already know?
The tuition is the same regardless of your background. However, career counselors can skim the chapters on Job Search Mechanics (Part 4 of the training) and if you pass the quiz the first time you can move on to the final exam. Coaches can add to their current training with our QuantumShift! Coaching model.
How much do career coaches charge their clients?
Career coaches’ fees range depending on their expertise. New graduates of our basic program can charge US$300-$1000 per month for 3-4 half-hour sessions as a starting fee per individual client. However in Your Coaching Brand (a bonus included with the training) and our further Conscious Client Attraction business coaching, we teach you how to package your services and serve a specific micro-niche so that you are not billing by the month (and NEVER by the hour).  The key to making money has to do with positioning yourself in the marketplace, selection of a deep and relatively narrow niche, packaging your services, using the internet effectively, and other practices we teach in our Practice-Building Courses.
When can I start coaching people?
We encourage our students to start coaching people after they have completed the first 3 moduels of our basic training — even if they haven’t coached before. These can be free clients, but if you practice while you’re in the program, you can bring issues that come up to class or to your coach for advice and suggestions in real time about real situations.
Do I need a college degree to be a coach?
No!!! Career counselors are required to have a Masters in Counseling in most states; coaching is different. There are as yet no specific educational (or licensing/certification!) requirements to be a coach. Your certification through CCI will go a long way toward both establishing your own confidence in your skills and giving a credential that will earn you credibility with prospective clients. CCI career coach certifications are recognized worldwide.
What are the computer/software requirements for your program?
Any desktop or laptop that is current will work, whether Mac or PC. Plus you’ll need an internet connection. Other common software such as MS Word and Adobe Acrobat (free from should equip you to complete our program.
What is “Authentic Vocation™”?
To quote from Marcia Bench’s ” Career Coaching: An Insider’s Guide”: “Authentic,” as used here, means “real,” “genuine” or “aligned with one’s essential self;” “vocation” means “a calling,” “a profession to which one is particularly suited,” or “a life’s work.” In other words, work that meets this standard emanates from one’s authentic self and allows a person to be what they truly are while doing what they most love and feel passionate about. It includes 8 elements: life purpose, values, motives, skills, experience, desired job targets, work environment, and business reality.
How many people have graduated from your program?
We have several thousand graduates in 48 countries as well as the U.S. There are a number of success stories here you can review.

The 3 Simple Secrets to Using Career Coaching to Make You More Money and Give You More Free Time

Fill in the form below to receive your FREE Report!

Need Help?

We're available to speak and answer your questions

(503) 308-8179