Everyone needs a coach. Every successful person in every field would have benefited from immense support from mentors, guides, teachers, and coaches. It does take an ecosystem to succeed. A leader can benefit immensely from a professional coach. For successful individuals and leaders, the journey from good to great can happen holistically with professional coaches.
Can anyone become a Coach?
While everyone needs a coach, not everyone is cut out to become a coach. A professional coach, that is, not a self-styled coach. A professional coach is truly a professional, a pro in practice, at all levels. One who works on skills and beyond. A professional coach is someone who works on the art and science of the profession. He/She intends and is trained to Coach from a state of being.
“Learn the rules like a pro so that you can break them like an artist,” said Picasso. The emphasis here is on ‘to learn.’ Not to break the rule but to explore beyond the stated ‘rules’ of Coaching. As in the “Return” stage in Hero’s Journey.
Going beyond the rules, frameworks, and techniques after having mastered each of them is the true characteristic of a Master Certified Coach. That is the journey.
What is ICF Coaching?
ICF defines coaching as “a thought-provoking and creative process…”
The initial journey to become a coach includes a lot of learning. Also, unlearning and re-learning. To unlearn all that I thought was coaching. The assumption I thought I was already a coach. From there, pick up the nuances of coaching.
That seems to be the journey to ‘become a coach.’ But that is only the beginning.
What are the elements of a journey to Mastery (MCC Certification)
From unconscious incompetence to Unconscious Competence
This is not the sprint to clocking 2,500 hours of Coaching, rather it is a journey from unconscious incompetence. While you are learning to become a Coach, ignorance is not bliss, as coaching involves the life of clients. Ignorance is a curse & so is half the know-how of coaching practices!
Reflections, hours of practice
As we move ahead in the learning process, clocking coaching hours, the reflections after the session, the mistakes we make as coaches in the initial phase, the rituals to prepare for every session, and the evolution of the coaching process are all critical.
At some point, the relationship with yourself & with the client evolves to deeper trust, partnering, and co-creating. A bit like dancing in the moment or a jugalbandhi. At that point, the coach is able to touch the realm of art. Then it is not just a binary process. It does not end there, for there is no end to learning for an artist.
True Mastery in the field of Coaching
Mastery in a professional field refers to the high level of skill, knowledge, and expertise that an individual has achieved through extensive experience and dedicated practice. It can also include the ability to produce exceptional work in FLOW state consistently and to continuously improve and adapt to new developments in the field continuously. Malcolm Gladwell refers to 10K hours to become an expert in any field. Hardcore experience, backed by intellectual curiosity, discipline, a bias for action, and humility, will help you gain mastery and an enduring legacy.
All learning happens only in humility. All experts are continuous learners. Not just learning but reflecting. Shravanam, Mananam, and Nidhidhyasanam, as it is said.
How can I become an MCC (Master Certified Coach) – ICF?
Becoming a master professional coach typically involves a combination of education, training, and experience. The steps to becoming a master professional coach may vary depending on the organization or industry, but some common steps include tahe following.
- The why. Many coaches pursue higher credentials as a follow-up to learning and certification. But mastery in coaching should be based on the purpose. Mere MCC certification or credentials should not be the justification. It has to be a transformational journey. A journey within. Beyond the tags and credentials. The impact should be a parameter.
I asked some of my fellow MCC coaches their “why?”
- “Because I felt ready…”
- “I wanted to get mastery in ICF’s process and framework of coaching so I could integrate it seamlessly with all of me that I could bring to a coaching conversation. All my knowledge, skills, abilities, wisdom gathered over the years…”
- “My mentor asked me to…”
- “It was a requirement at my coach training institute…”
- “To serve my client better…”
- “To move closer to mastery…”
- “To deepen my practice…”
- “It is my Ph.D.”
- “the desire to grow as a coach. I am so glad I did because coaching has now become my first love.”
- Personally… “coaching was my calling. MCC was a natural evolution.”
‘If you find a why, then you can bear any how.’ – Viktor Frankl
- Many organizations require coaches who have post-grad qualification and some solid work experience. Some organizations may also require additional qualifications or training programs.
- Obtain a relevant education, certification, experience, and credentials: ICF requires
- over 200 hours of training,
- 2,500 hours of coaching practice,
- mentoring hours,
- additional assignments, and
- Clear an online test by ICF – that allows coaches to demonstrate their mastery of the field.
- Organizations prefer coaches who are not only MCC credentialed by ICF, but also continue to be global members of ICF, demonstrating adherence to the ICF code of ethics.
- Continuing education: Many organizations require that coaches participate in ongoing continuing education programs to keep their skills and knowledge up-to-date.
- Gain experience: Many organizations require that coaches have several years of experience working in a related field before becoming a coach. A coach need not be a subject matter expert. That can actually interfere with the coaching. But organizations and coachees think differently.
How did I choose to pursue my Master Certified Coach (MCC Certification)
Mastery is a great skill to have. But it is always a mirage. Ask any maestro in any art. They are more aware of their areas of improvement. That is an integral part of the journey. Though a mirage, it is worth the effort. The journey is more beautiful than the experience of reaching the destination. And that is what makes it a deeply spiritual process.
MCC – a Journey Within
Mastery, or MCC journey, is purely a journey within (in every sense). It is not about coaching skills. It goes beyond the skills, the process, and even the art of coaching. That is what makes it an unconscious competence. Coaching in FLOW state. Or coaching from a state of being. Dancing in the moment. There is no effort. You are surprised by the questions you ask. You are able to go beyond the judgments. You are aware of your own limitations as a coach. You know the transformational shift happens more between the sessions. You are curious about the evolution of coaching engagement. Communication becomes communion.
Then, you are ‘blessed to witness the transformational shift in the client’ even though you have no role to play! It is the process that takes over.
Hence I maintain that coaching comes to us when we are ready to shift to a deeper consciousness. The coach does not manifest as the teacher manifests when the student is ready. But the coaching process manifests just as the real guru is not a person but our own higher consciousness.
What Mastery are you chasing? How is it chasing that mirage? Want to pursue your MCC Certification/Mentoring or start your MCC journey? write to us at email@example.com
Regal Unlimited is a premier boutique coaching firm based out of Bengaluru. We offer coaching training, leadership & executive coaching, and life coaching programs. We also offer healing modalities for personal & corporate well-being.
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