Which is the best Coaching qualification for me to undertake and at what level?

Which is the best Coaching qualification for me to undertake and at what level?

It’s another one of those questions that often stumps us when thinking about our future development in Coaching!!

So we will look at two different qualification routes – the two most popular in Coaching; the ILM and the CMI


The ILM Coaching qualifications are deemed as being more prestigious with more Internal and Professional Coaches favouring these over the CMI qualifications, the ILM qualifications are the most popular/recognised in the UK and have over 80% market share.


The CMI comes into its own for developing managers and leaders in coaching as the assignments are not as academic, so these qualifications are perfect for putting your managers and leaders through; who need to use coaching as part of the day job to establish a culture of developmental leadership.

CMI Coaching Qualifications

Each qualification has 3 levels – Level 3, 5 and 7

Level 3 is aimed at those coaching at a First Line Manager level and below, both the CMI and ILM Level 3 Qualifications in Coaching are aimed at the Team Leaders/First Line Manager populace for people coaching on the Job in a Line Management role, at Level 3 you have two levels of Qualification, the Level 3 Award and Level 3 Certificate.

Level 5 is aimed at a Middle Manager level and below, with the ILM having two levels with the Certificate and Diploma and the CMI also having an Award at this level as well, the CMI Level 5 is aimed at Managers/Leaders whereas the ILM is more for Internal/External Coaches, the ILM assignments are much harder at the Certificate and Diploma level as you have to compile a Coaching Log as part of the assignments 12 hours for the ILM Level 5 Certificate and 60 hours coaching for the ILM Level 5 Diploma.

Level 7 is aimed at Senior Managers/Leaders and below, with the ILM having two levels with the Certificate and Diploma and the CMI also having an Award at this level as well, the CMI Level 7 is aimed at Managers/Leaders whereas the ILM is more for Internal/External Coaches, the ILM assignments are much harder at the Certificate and Diploma level as you have to compile a Coaching Log as part of the assignments 20 hours for the ILM Level 7 Certificate and 60 hours coaching for the ILM Level 7 Diploma.

The ILM Level 7 Certificate and Diploma are seen as the top coaching qualifications in the market place, and are especially valued amongst the HR/L&D/OD communities.


Further progression would then be to undertake the ILM Level 7 Certificate or Diploma in Coaching Supervision.

“Coaching supervision is a formal and protected time for facilitating in-depth reflection for coaches to discuss their work with someone who is experienced as a Coach”

Why investing in your people is more than financials

Why investing in your people is more than financials

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn”

Benjamin Franklin

Whether you want to identify your high potential staff or prepare the future leaders within your organisation, your commitment and investment in them and the programs you put them on is key.

Hiring a training provider to deliver programs can be the simplest part of the process. When leaders are involved on such programs, the real value and the growth of the people can be further enhanced, made richer and more lasting.

When staff feel they are being invested in, they believe their employers trust them enough to build their skills, experience and future within the company.

To develop such an initiative requires an investment of time, effort and finances from everyone involved. Whether a senior manager decides to partake in a group discussion, sit on a judging panel or even lead a mock scenario, a well-designed, planned and organised program is key. Here are some ways in which staff development programs can be conceptualised, designed and implemented:

1. Knowing “why” you are doing this

“Great leaders and great organizations are good at seeing what most of us can’t see. They are good at giving us things we would never think of asking for.”

Simon Sinek

A company will benefit from asking itself why is wishes to implement such a program. This allows the decision makers to review their decision-making process and gather enough data-points and evidence to support their approach and strategy. Examples of why companies invest in their talent can include: succession planning, reward and recognise talent, prepare the workforce for the future, skill-set gaps, change in company strategy and anything thing else topical for the organisation. 

2. Selecting the right people

“Great companies don’t hire skilled people and motivate them, they hire already motivated people and inspire them.”

Simon Sinek

Not everyone is prepared for the commitment, extra time and the challenges of talent development programs and initiatives. It is important to know and understand what motivates your staff and how they will cope when undergoing a program on top of their day job.

A great way to identify the right group of people is to undertake a selection process based on assessments, interviews and presentations. During this process, the motivation and commitments of the staff members can be ascertained. This step in the process will require time and input from senior management.

3. Communicating the program with passion and positivity

The way initiatives and programs are communicated, branded and packaged is as important as the initiative itself. The delivery of messages and the way staff are informed matters as this demonstrates the commitment being made by the bosses within the company. The communication can happen on a one to one basis or to the selected group in scope. Regardless of what approach is taken, the messaging should be motivating, uplifting and emphasise the importance of the investment being made by the company.

4. Choose a vendor you trust and have a rapport with

Working with a supplier to design and deliver a program to your expectations will contribute to the success. Initiatives of this nature are unique, and the cultural setting must be understood and appreciated by the supplier. Every organisation is unique, this means long terms programs cannot be off-the-shelf, there needs to be tailoring. 

Identify a vendor based on the following:

  • Recommendations
  • Meet the people who will deliver the program
  • Assess how bespoke the program will be for your company
  • Meet the suppliers on multiple occasions
  • Ask them to provide you with their ideas and examples
  • Be prepared to pick and choose what works for your company and staff

Ask for different cost options and choose one which is most suitable. It is important to remember that the low-cost options are not always the best.

5. Design a program which can be delivered and will create the impact you desire

Upon selecting the vendor, discuss the ideas, themes and main objectives you wish to achieve. A project plan will be a valuable tool to help structure and inform all parties of when things will happen and responsibilities. Identify Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) which the program will be subject to as it is a valuable way to track progress of suppliers and the staff.

As you can see, developing your people is an involved process which requires company sponsorship and endorsement. When these are in place, the actual program will be geared up for growth, development, fun and successes for the individual and the wider organisation.

Monica Mahi Mathijs is the CEO and Found of Our Stillness and Firefly Today – a corporate development organisation based in the UAE.

Aliya Rajah

Aliya Rajah

Aliya Rajah – Confidence Coach for Women

Aliya Rajah supports professional women in building their self-confidence to help them to achieve their goals, feel happier in themselves and develop more meaningful relationships. She is a life coach and NLP Practitioner and has a degree in Biomedical Science and a Masters in Public Health. Aliya works with women on a one to one basis and runs confidence building workshops. She is from London and is now living and expanding her business in the UAE.

Contact Information & Social Media links:

Email:  info@aliyarajah.com
Website: http://www.aliyarajah.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/coach_aliya
Facebook: www.facebook.com/aliya.rajah

Chris Goodwin

Chris Goodwin

Chris is the Managing Director of The Results Driven Group.

Chris has a background in industry and has 20 years in the skills arena.

One of his core skill sets is designing bespoke management and leadership solutions that are designed around talent development and linked to business need and linked directly to business growth (ROI).

Chris is an organisational and people development specialist and works as an Executive Coach / Suopervisor and Consultant for some of the biggest companies in the world.

He is entrepreneurial by nature, a natural Marketer and delivers a whole range of Coaching, Management & Leadership training solutions for our clients.

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Five Steps To Creating A Healthy, Inclusive And Inspiring Work Culture

Five Steps To Creating A Healthy, Inclusive And Inspiring Work Culture

In the last year, in the wake of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements, talk of culture has noticeably shifted to talk of inclusion. In my view, the only healthy culture is one that’s inclusive and enables all members to contribute and feel valued. I want to share some practical thoughts and ideas to help your company become more inclusive and, as a result, more welcoming, creative and productive.

How do you develop a culture that includes and inspires all people, including women and underrepresented groups? Part of the key lies in understanding your own privilege, which can be tough for many of us to explore. But it’s a necessary step to creating a work environment that invites everyone’s contributions. Here are some ways to get started:

1. Recognize your unconscious biases and address them.

We all have biases. Admitting that you have bias is essential in order to grow. One way to understand yours it to take The Implicit Association Test (IAT), a free online tool developed at Harvard that lets you assess your bias in categories like gender, race, religion, disability, age, weight and weapons. A goal of Project Implicit is to study thoughts and feelings outside of our conscious awareness and control. Its findings help educate us about hidden biases and provide a “virtual laboratory” for collecting data about bias. It also provides recommendations to help eliminate unwanted biases once you identify them.

2. Act on your empathy to build others up.

If you don’t know where to start, ask a couple of people from underrepresented groups what they need from you. Dedicate yourself to learning and creating change. Every action counts, and no step is too small. Ask for their feedback about how you can be an advocate. Listen to and believe their stories, and take their opinions seriously. Give women and people of color the floor; reinforce their opinions, and publicly praise and amplify their ideas.

3. Allow yourself to make mistakes.

We’ve likely all said or done something at work that had an unintended impact. Remember that it’s natural to feel defensive when you mess up. At the time, you may not understand why what you said landed poorly, and even after some reflection, you still may struggle to understand. Keep an open mind, and realize that feelings of guilt, anger or shame are not productive. Let your defensiveness be a signal — focus on asking questions and taking action, rather than remaining silent. Ask, “What did I learn? How can I help? And what will I do differently in the future?”

4. Learn from other leaders.

It’s no secret that tech companies grapple with diversity, equity and inclusion — the workforce and management at most tech companies are still male-dominated. The good news is that there are leaders showing us the way to build more equitable, representative work cultures. A good example is Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce. In 2015, the head of human resources told him there was a problem with unequal pay across the company, and initially, he didn’t believe it. After an audit showed that there were indeed significant pay gaps based on gender across the company, Benioff corrected the disparities, to the tune of millions of dollars, and now equal pay is policy at Salesforce, and 20% of the senior leadership are women.

5. Start today.

The good news is that regardless of your role, there’s no need to wait to take action. Whether you choose to start with the IAT, speak up for yourself or other underrepresented team members, or recommend diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) training and unconscious bias training for your organization, the first step is yours to take.

Source : https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbeshumanresourcescouncil/2019/01/11/five-steps-to-creating-a-healthy-inclusive-and-inspiring-work-culture/#59b6f13e5f7c

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