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How Much Do Career Coaches Make? (Per hour & year)

How much do career coaches make? 

That’s what we’re going to talk about today. 

If you’re looking to…

  • Break free from your 9-5 
  • Use your current skills to do meaningful work 
  • Have MORE free time and income

…then you’re in the right place!

As you’ll see, career coaching ticks all those boxes.

You’ll learn…

What is a career coach?

Career coaching is all about guiding people to a career path that fits who they are and what they want. 

How? 

By working with individuals one-on-one (or in groups) and learning more about them to offer customized support. 

So, as a coach, you learn things like:

  • Your clients’ professional goals 
  • Your clients’ background/previous work experience
  • What skills your clients might need to develop to land their dream job or get promoted

You then help your clients achieve their goals, whether that’s reducing interview anxiety or figuring out what direction their career should go in.

Regardless of what your clients need to focus on most, though, the ultimate goal of career coaching is delivering personalized results

And to do that, you create a plan with action steps that help guide your clients to go from where they are to where they want to be.

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for building a
6-Figure Coaching Business so you can achieve more freedom!

What does a career coach do?

The most important thing you help your clients with is getting results. 

Let’s look at some examples of what that might look like in practice. 

Career coaches can help:

  • Recent college grads who don’t know how to position themselves to find their first post-grad job
  • Middle-aged employees who feel unfulfilled at work and who need help finding a path that suits them
  • Stay-at-home parents returning to the workforce after years away and who don’t know how to fill gaps in their resume

…And more!

As you can see, career coaches can support people at all stages of their careers.

(Below, we’re going to look at some real-life examples of how my successful career coaching students got started, so keep reading.)

Are career coaches in high demand?

Yes. For example, according to iPEC Coaching, people make 1.5 million searches per month to look for coaches in a few niches, including career coaching. 

Also, coaching revenue has surpassed 2.8 billion USD as of 2019, and the industry is expected to grow by 6.7% per year.

However, even though (or because) coaching is a booming industry, be sure to niche down as a career coach

It’ll be a lot easier for you to break into the field, stand out, and build long-term success if you have a unique offer that speaks to a specific audience. 

For example, do you want to help people who have been in the workforce for 30 years? Or would you prefer working with entry-level employees? 

These two demographics both need career coaching. But their specific needs are different.

So, think about who you want to help the most – and then speak to their specific pain points. 

For instance, some of my career coaching students focus on helping career women, and others help people who have good jobs on paper but who want to find more fulfillment in their work. 

Once you find a niche that works for you, it’ll be a lot easier to find clients who need what you offer.

Okay, now let’s answer the question you came here for: 

How much do career coaches make?

How much can you charge as a career coach?

On average, a career coaching salary is $67,800 per year in the US when they work part-time. 

And according to Salary.com, here are the average career coach salaries in the US: 

StateAverage salary
Alabama$44,693
Alaska$53,075
Arizona$47,646
Arkansas$44,333
California$53,658
Colorado$54,890
Connecticut$52,432
Delaware$49,694
Florida$46,215
Georgia$47,204
Hawaii$50,796
Idaho$45,167
Illinois$51,318
Indiana$47,441
Iowa$40,952
Kansas$46,322
Kentucky$45,777
Louisiana$44,084
Maine$46,896
Maryland$50,159
Massachusetts$52,943
Michigan$48,248
Minnesota$49,735
Mississippi$43,384
Missouri$46,243
Montana$44,367
Nebraska$45,646
Nevada$45,042
New Hampshire$44,942
New Jersey$53,556
New Mexico$51,101
New York$57,161
North Carolina$46,702
North Dakota$46,711
Ohio$47,712
Oklahoma$44,980
Oregon$43,023
Pennsylvania$48,550
Rhode Island$50,862
South Carolina$45,929
South Dakota$42,868
Tennessee$44,722
Texas$47,821
Utah$45,921
Vermont$46,515
Virginia$48,356
Washington $52,194
West Virginia$42,796
Wisconsin$47,804
Wyoming$42,989

But that’s how much employed coaches make, so it’s not necessarily a good reflection of how much YOU could earn as a self-employed coach. 

How do I know? Because I’ve had students hit the high six figures (and even seven figures!) after starting their own coaching company.

For example, one of my students, Anna Cosic, earned $20k from her career coaching business – and that was in her first four months alone. 

Screenshot of Anna Cosic's website

What is the average career coach hourly rate?

Coaching rates typically range somewhere between $100-$150 per hour

But here’s the thing: Hourly pricing isn’t the best way to price your services… 

And that’s because people will pay you for your time rather than results

Ultimately, results are what they want, so pricing your services per hour doesn’t make a lot of sense for you or your clients.

Get the Ultimate Guide

for building a
6-Figure Coaching Business so you can achieve more freedom!

If you’re like me, you don’t start a business to have to hustle non-stop to keep it going. That would be like trading your 9-to-5 for an even bigger pair of golden handcuffs.

One of the best perks about having your own coaching business is being able to set your own schedule – so you don’t have to work around the clock and burn out. 

So, what’s the best alternative to hourly pricing? That’s what we’ll look at next.

How should you price your first coaching package?

We’ve already established that per-hour pricing is NOT the way to go. Instead, creating a coaching package is ideal. Why?

A few reasons:

  • You get the satisfaction of charging clients for the results you offer (rather than hours of your time) 
  • It’s easier to hit your income goals with per-package pricing (sell just four coaching packages for $2,500 each and you’ll hit $10,000 – versus having to sell 100 coaching hours for the same returns)
  • As you get better at coaching, you’ll be able to work less (while still offering incredible value)

I talk more about pricing your coaching package here:

Now you know how to PRICE your offers… 

How do you become a career coach? 

As we’ve already talked about, you can earn significantly more as a career coach if you start your own business instead of working for a company as an employee. 

So, how can you do that? Keep reading.

Do you need a career coaching certification? 

Some people think you need to jump through a bunch of hoops and become a certified career coaching expert before you can start helping clients.

But… you don’t. 

Sure, certain types of coaches should get specific training, especially coaches in the health niche. 

But here’s why certification ultimately isn’t required: As a coach, you’re there to guide your clients to attain specific results. 

How? 

By offering valuable advice that applies to their situation. 

So, as a coach, you’re NOT a therapist (because yes, therapists do need specific training). Your role is to mentor, encourage, and guide your clients to the results they want. 

How do you get your first paying career coaching clients? 

A lot of new coaches get intimidated by the idea of finding their first few clients. If that’s you, don’t worry – it’s not as complicated as you think. 

(And no, I’m not going to recommend that you spend your time sending 5,000 cold emails and just hoping you’ll get responses.) 

To get you started, here are some real examples of ways my students have gotten clients – when they were brand-new to coaching and DIDN’T have a thriving business yet.

Social media groups

When you’re just starting out and don’t have much traffic coming to your website yet (or any at all!), social media groups are a great way to connect with your target audience. 

This method has worked for several of my students, including Emily Liou, who’s now a 6-figure career coach for clients looking for more fulfillment in their work. Early on, Emily created a poll in Facebook groups for job seekers to ask what they needed help with as they searched for work. 

People responded and asked about her coaching offer, which helped her grow her client base.

Screenshot of Cultivitae website

And the same strategies work across different social media groups, such as Reddit. 

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is also an ideal place to find potential clients when you’re just getting started. In fact, it’s also how my student Emily got clients early on. 

She used the same basic strategy as in Facebook groups: Basically, she asked her LinkedIn network what would make their job search easier. 

After getting a few responses, she offered to coach people at a lower rate to build up a reputation and get referrals. 

And it worked! Her business took off from there.

One of my other students, Toni Patterson, is a career coach for corporate women, and she’s also had success using LinkedIn to grow her reach.

Ultimately, what’s the key takeaway here? 

It’s this: Don’t overcomplicate your client search process.

You don’t need to spend a fortune on ad campaigns or reach out to random people hoping they’ll need career coaching services. 

Instead, do what my successful students have done: 

  • Go where your target audience already is (like LinkedIn and niche Facebook groups)
  • Talk to people about their pain points
  • Figure out what demographic you want to help and create a plan to help them specifically

These are effective ways to land your first clients. And the good news? 

You can start searching for clients right now. You don’t need to wait until you have a perfect website or brand logo.

Need extra help? Check out this video where I go into more detail about foolproof strategies to get results (even if you’re short on time):

Next steps

Get the Ultimate Guide

for building a
6-Figure Coaching Business so you can achieve more freedom!

So, how much do career coaches make? Now you know the answer to that – plus the answers to other relevant questions to help you become a successful coach yourself.

As a career coach, you CAN live life on your own terms – while changing people’s lives in the process.

And now that you know your income potential, want to know how to attract your dream clients? Get my exclusive training here

Read more: 

How to Start a Coaching Business 

How to Become an Executive Coach

How to Get Coaching Clients

About Luisa Zhou

Luisa Zhou has helped thousands of students build and scale their own profitable online Freedom Business. Fun Fact: She used to work as an engineer for the Space Station and holds a B.S.E. from Princeton. Click here to learn more about Luisa.

Hope you enjoy this blog post.

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