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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 Institute of Leadership and Management

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 Chartered Management Institute

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.

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 100 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 5 Certificate and 100 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.

What next?

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”




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