A common mistake that coaches make is changing their designation. They simply name themselves whatever they want to name themselves. For example, they take a Certified Professional Coach program, and then they say they are a certified life coach. It is not the same thing. Schools that give the certifications have gone through a process for being accredited to give those designations and those specific designations are what is allowed and accurate.
If you want to put yourself out there as a life coach after earning your Certified Professional Coach designation, say, “I’m a Certified Professional Coach that specializes in life coaching.” Add your focus area as your niche. You can also say that you are a Certified Professional Coach working with clients on relationships or on relocating or on family, or whatever it is you want to specialize in. If you go on and earn the Certified Master Coach, you can say you are a Certified Master Coach specializing in working with executives. This is different than calling yourself a certified executive coach.
We often get asked about the Certified Coach Specialist program. When you take that class, you are choosing a designation. The Center for Coaching Certification has the approval for you to focus in a specific area so you can call yourself a Certified Life Coach Specialist, a Certified Executive Coach Specialist, a Certified Business Coach Specialist, a Certified Career Coach Specialist, or a Certified Wellness Coach Specialist. If you want a designation that cites your niche you have that opportunity.
Accurately naming your certification and/or credential is your credibility, your accountability, and your demonstration of your commitment to quality. This speaks to your customers. It tells them what you offer, and for many, that you meet their standards. Be clear on what initials you have earned, and state them accurately.