WABC Global Standard:
Qualifications for Business Coaches
Candidates and holders of this credential only
Type of Qualification:
Designation: Professional certification*
Level of Qualification:
Level 4: For senior business coaches
Name of Qualification:
Chartered Business Coach (ChBC)
October 24, 2007
Open | Accepting applicants
WABC's Commitment to Excellence
The Worldwide Association of Business Coaches (WABC) is the first global professional association representing the business coaching industry. Since its inception in 1997, WABC has dedicated itself to raising the profile of business coaching—still an emerging profession—and to differentiating it from coaching in general.
How? Through our principled approach of engaging in disciplined self-regulatory activities to increase public trust in our industry worldwide as it develops. We've identified our emerging profession. We've conducted groundbreaking investigations into what defines a competent business coach. We've further defined and standardized the activities and competencies of business coaching.
The results? WABC has done more than any other organization to identify the tasks, qualities and skills of the business coach. WABC's activities set the gold standard for business coaching and help decision-makers around the world when they screen, hire, train and evaluate business coaches.
The Chartered Business Coach (ChBC) designation is a global credential intended for senior professional business coaches. ChBC recognizes very experienced practicing business coaches who demonstrate their mastery of the WABC competencies and their application of a range of business coaching initiatives and activities across a wide diversity of contexts, the outcomes of which may be unpredictable. Furthermore, they are expected to demonstrate their exercising of substantial personal autonomy and their significant influence, leadership and contribution within their organization, the profession or academic settings. Chartered status tells the wider community that a business coach possess senior expertise, specialized knowledge and professional competence.
Purpose of Qualification
- Sets global standards for senior professional business coaches, and clearly identifies these standards for buyers of business coaching
- Provides an independent, robust, transparent assessment process that recognizes appropriate levels of education and continuing professional development for the highest standards of professionalism in business coaching
- Promotes high-caliber leadership in business coaching services for the benefit of clients
- Contributes to the definition, development and self-regulation of the business coaching profession
Type of Qualification
ChBC is an independent, evidence-based certified designation (no prerequisite credential required**).
ChBC is awarded by WABC, headquartered in Canada.
Benefits of ChBC
Three top benefits of ChBC:
#1—ChBC is an evidence-based qualification
ChBC is the product of rigorous research, development and testing. As an evidence-based designation, ChBC is guided by relevant global standards developed by WABC through extensive study and industry consultation. The WABC standards undergo a comprehensive annual review to ensure that they stay relevant and continue to set the highest global standards for business coaches at this level.
#2—ChBC is business coaching focused and specialized
ChBC designation, and the training leading to it, are built around a coaching-specific curriculum that's current, rigorous and based on thoroughly researched business coaching competencies. ChBC tells the wider community that you've obtained a very high level of specialized subject knowledge and professional competence as a senior professional business coach.
#3—ChBC is publicly valued
Standards-based designations like ChBC help establish business coaching as a profession worthy of public respect and trust. ChBC tells the marketplace that business coaching professionalism and excellence matter to you, and in this way you'll boost the prestige and professionalism of your practice and advance the credibility of the industry.
Routes to ChBC
WABC Accredited (Level 4 - ChBC) Programs - Available in mid-2020
Level 4 programs are those suitable for ChBC. (Learn more about WABC Accredited programs in the “More Information” section below.)
Independent Portfolio - Not Available
This route is intended for those professionals who seek to engage in an independent approach rather than through a formal WABC Accredited program. The independent route involves the submission of a comprehensive self-assessment portfolio for independent examination.
How to Earn ChBC
You are an ideal candidate for ChBC if you are:
- A senior leader or manager heavily utilizing business coaching, or
- An internal business coach who works at senior levels of management. You provide the same level of expertise expected of senior external coaches but within the confines of your own organization (you may however have gained experience across a range of organizations), or
- An external business coach who works across a range of organizations and at senior levels of management.
and if you possess:
- At least five years of senior and intensive business coaching experience
- The ability to demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of business coaching, professionalism, leadership and significant achievements in the field, and a commitment to contributing to your and others’ professional development
- The ability to evidence significant profile within the field
- A reflective ability to meet the high assessment standards
To earn the ChBC, you must meet these requirements:
- Pass a screening interview with a WABC Accredited (Level 4 - ChBC) program instructor;
- Have at least five years of business coaching experience (external or internal coaching or a combination of both);
- Meet minimum WABC membership requirements for chartered (currently WABC Full Membership);
- Be a current member in good standing***; and
- Successfully complete a WABC Accredited (Level 4 - ChBC) program.
- It's common for candidates to join WABC during the program. If you have joined during your program and then allow your WABC membership to expire before you complete the program, you will be asked to rejoin WABC and pay the applicable new member fees before receiving the designation.
- You have one year from the date you graduated from the WABC Accredited (Level 4 - ChBC) program to become a WABC member (see minimum membership level above).
- If the Level 4 program you completed was recently accredited by WABC, check with your program instructor or WABC for more details about your eligibility for ChBC.
How to Maintain ChBC
As a certification designation, you must continue to meet these following requirements:
Effective January 17, 2014, the five-year PD record review fee is US$350. If your PD record requires a second review (when it is not approved), or if you submit your record after the relevant deadline(s), the fee is US$450.
Taking a Sabbatical
Taking a sabbatical during your career may affect your ChBC designation.
When ChBC Can Be Revoked
- If you offer business coaching services during your sabbatical, you will retain your ChBC as long as you continue to meet the requirements listed above under "How to Maintain ChBC." If you do not meet those requirements, your ChBC will be revoked (see "When ChBC Can Be Revoked" below).
- If you do not offer business coaching services during your sabbatical, you are no longer eligible for WABC membership. You must resign your membership as specified in our Terms of Membership, and your ChBC will be revoked (see "When ChBC Can Be Revoked" below).
ChBC can be revoked under certain circumstances. Examples include not meeting the credential verification or re-certification requirements or being cited for a legal or ethical violation. If your ChBC credential is revoked, you will no longer be able to use the designation and you must remove all references to it, including logos, from your marketing, promotional and other material. You must also return your non-refundable certificate to WABC.
How to List ChBC
Current holders may list this WABC designation in full as follows: Chartered Business Coach™ or as initials without periods as follows: ChBC™ or both ways as follows: Chartered Business Coach™ (ChBC™).
Please Note: WABC members who hold any educational degrees, or any professional designations from organizations other than WABC, must have these credentials (now and in the future) verified by WABC if they wish to list them in any materials that display WABC trademarks (e.g., WABC name, logo, designations). This requirement applies to members' own materials (e.g., marketing and promotional material, résumés, business cards, website, email signature block) that contain WABC trademarks as well as to WABC materials (e.g., website, member correspondence). For full details, refer to our Use of Designations Policy, Trademarks and Logo Use Policy and Logos and Guidelines.
What's Your Next Step?
Get in touch. Contact WABC.
What Others Say
Here's what some of our ChBC Holders have to say.
**What do you mean when you say "no prerequisite credential required?"
*What is certification?
Certification is a voluntary process by which a nongovernmental body recognizes an individual who has successfully met predetermined qualifications.
This means you do not have to possess other WABC or non-WABC credentials in order to pursue ChBC. Instead, you need to meet the requirements as explained in the "How to Earn ChBC" section above. This further speaks to another unique aspect of WABC's suite of designations for business coaches—coaches can seek to earn the designation(s) that is right for them at any point in their careers.
What is unique about a professional certification designation?
It is the most rigorous level of professional credentialing available for individuals. Professional certification designations that follow industry best practices require validation, carry re-certification requirements and are subject to revocation. ChBC adheres to these best practices.
Why do I have to renew my professional certification designation?
Professional certification programs grant "working or applied" credentials. Unlike certificate, degree and other education programs, which transfer knowledge and skills, professional certification measures how an individual uses knowledge and skills in real-life situations. By certifying that the holder is able to practice at a certain level, certification maintains public trust in the delivery of a certain service. For a professional certification designation to remain valid, the holder must stay abreast of the current practice and theories. That's why it's a certification best practice for holders to meet ongoing requirements, such as continuing professional development, to maintain their designations.
What are WABC Accredited programs?
WABC provides program accreditation for qualified third-party programs. For programs to become accredited by WABC, they must successfully pass WABC's rigorous program accreditation process including review and assessment by independent Accreditation Decision Boards. Learn even more about WABC Accredited.
Other WABC programs
Qualifications for Business Coaches
WABC reserves all rights in connection with the Chartered Business Coach (ChBC) designation, including the right to change the requirements of ChBC designation, and to replace ChBC designation.