ALC Certification and Practice Clients

Working with a practice client is a valuable part of your Academic Life Coach Training. A practice client is someone who you agree to coach, pro bono, with the understanding that you are going to be trying out different coaching concepts as part of a training program.

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Benefits of Working with a Practice Client

There are countless advantages to getting started coaching early and working with a practice client throughout your training. Here are our top three:

  1. Real world practice and application. Reading about coaching skills is important and a necessary part of learning about coaching. However, you gain so much value from applying the things you are reading about in class to actual clients in the real world. It can also be easy to get used to practicing coaching on other coaches while you are in training. Having a practice client will give you your first taste of what it is really like to be a coach.
  2. Less pressure for perfection. Having a practice client also lets you experiment and hone your coaching skills in the real world, without the pressure of having to get everything perfect right away. Because your practice client is not paying you, it relieves some of the pressure to be the perfect coach. You have a bit more freedom and the opportunity to figure out what works best for you and what does not.
  3. Gauge your progress. While working with a practice client, you also realize how far and how developed your skill set as a coach has become. You do not need to be a perfect coach to transform lives, and having a practice client will help you realize that.

How to Find Your First Practice Client

Finding a practice client can seem like a daunting task. However, tapping into your network is the best and easiest way to find your first practice client. Connect with your fellow coaches. Tell you friends and family about your training. Spread the word with other parents. You will be surprised how easy it is to find someone who knows someone, who’s daughter could really benefit from working with a coach.

The challenge with offering free life coaching to practice clients is that when people are not paying for something, they do not always take it as seriously. However, this is not always the case, the differentiating factor seems to be the way that a coach initially pitches the idea of coaching. Here are a few tips:

  • Avoid asking for a favor
  • Treat your practice client like any paying client
  • Talk about the problems you solve, not what a life coach does