What to consider when choosing your NLP course…
WHO IS ACTUALLY TRAINING THE COURSE
Your Trainer is the single most important factor in your learning experience. So it’s worth looking into their qualiﬁcations, testimonials and read articles and blog they’ve written. NLP is used in many different contexts: business, personal growth, coaching, therapeutic or sports. So check whether the Trainer has the background or application that interests you.
What group size would you learn best in? Would you enjoy a massive auditorium with 200 people or would you prefer the personal attention a smaller group? Find out what the group sizes are before you book a course, they vary from 2 to hundreds! Also, what is the teacher to student ratio? A group of 20 with two lead trainers you will still get quite a lot of personal interaction. We like to use training assistants, qualiﬁed NLP Practitioners giving their time to support delegates and increase their own learning.
MODULAR VS INTENSIVE COURSES
Some NLP Trainings are intensive in that the whole course is taken as a complete block. Other courses are done in modules (usually of 2 to 4 days spaced out over a number of months). Your decision about what works best for you depends on your own preference for learning, each option has pros and cons.
Intensive training allows you to immerse yourself in the group and the material. You really get to think about nothing else but NLP and some people really like this approach. One downside of intensive courses is that once the course is over it’s over! A lack of reflection and practice time makes it difficult for some people to apply NLP in the outside world. . Some trainers offer support post course so it’s worth checking this out if you like this option.
Modular training lets you learn some, practice some and then go out into the world and apply it between modules. People like modular trainings because of the incremental nature of the learning they receive. They come back each month having practised and tried things out, integrating them before learning more in the next module. Often the choice of intensive or modular comes down to your own logistics and what fits best with your life.
Making sure your certificate is awarded by an official UK accrediting bodies for NLP is crucial for many reasons. You may want to use your qualiﬁcation professionally, as a counsellor or therapist or coach. Perhaps, you’d like to continue your learning and achieve NLP Master Practitioner, or Master Coach, or Psychotherapy. Or maybe you simply want to be assured of the quality of your training. See more about this in UK NLP Certifying Bodies and Associations.
NLP teaches us to be outcome focused, so begin with the end in mind. Choose the course that gives you what you want and make it possible for you to be successful. It is tempting to pick a training that is near to you, but don’t be afraid of searching wider aﬁeld. Compare the location and travel time and cost with the cost of the course. What would it cost you to get the training you really want? Most training companies will provide you with a list of recommended accommodation to suit all budgets. Many people get a beneﬁt out of staying away whilst they are learning. It depends what’s most important to you.
Warning Signs when choosing your NLP Course
These are the key warning signs to be aware of when deciding how to choose your NLP Trainer.
PROMISE OF A PROMINENT LEAD TRAINER
You are sold a prominent name as lead trainer and they only turn up at the beginning and the end. This can be very disappointing if you’ve chosen a course particularly to learn from this prominent trainer. So if that is important to you ask exactly how much of the course the lead trainer will be teaching.
TRAINER IS NOT CERTIFIED BY AN AWARDING BODY
Caveat Emptor! You get what you pay for! If your trainer is claiming an accredited status this can be checked out. This is your external check on their status.
If your trainer is simply selling their ‘experience’ and cannot point to any formal training or certifications, watch out! Perhaps, they’re suggesting they were around in the early days of NLP or knew the early pioneers of NLP. If you’ve never heard of them, then run for the hills!
We are very happy to assist anyone wanting help with this, we’ve had trainees come to us having attended a non-accredited NLP Practitioner programme run by a person who claimed to be Master Practitioner but who’s credentials could not be traced anywhere.
TRAINER MAKES OUTRAGEOUS PROMISES
Beware a training that makes highly exaggerated promises about what you will get out of a training. Promising to make you money overnight or ﬁx your life for good should be treated with caution. NLP is a powerful technology and good trainers will be realistic about what you can get out of a course and don’t be afraid to question this. If it sounds too good to be true it probably is.
SHORT VS LONGER NLP PRACTITIONER COURSES
Practitioner Certiﬁcations are available in a number of formats and lengths. Some include less face to face time and some online or audio books as part of the course.
It’s a case of what works for you and what kind of learning experience you want. NLP is about working with other people, face to face practice and experience is important for you to become highly skilled. Generally speaking what you decide depends on your learning preference and what you plan to do with your certiﬁcate. For example some coaching and therapy associations require your Practitioner be a minimum of 120 hours face to face. IT IS VITAL YOU CHECK THIS BEFORE BOOKING. Achieving a triple certification within 7 days will not wash with the bulk of the therapy and coaching associations. In particular with shorter courses, make sure they are certiﬁed by one of the NLP Associations as they will check the syllabus and rigour of the training.
Even with the pandemic and the arrival of Zoom, NLP is still about working with other people. Whilst certain aspects of NLP Training can be delivered virtually, no in-depth change can be achieved in virtual workshops. Face to Face workshops are the most effective.
UK NLP Certifying Bodies and Associations
One of the key roles of Accrediting organisations is to provide a list of accredited trainers. This is to make it easier when you are deciding How to choose your NLP Trainer.
Association of NLP (ANLP) (www.anlp.org)
ANLP is an organisation for NLP professionals. It’s website has some really useful information on NLP on it and their regular magazine Rapport is excellent. ANLP also accredit trainings and all trainers running ANLP accredited trainings must meet certain criteria to qualify.
Trainers can be members or they can be accredited trainers so be clear about your trainer’s ANLP status. Only ANLP Accredited Trainers can issue you with a certiﬁcate accredited by ANLP. There are different logos ANLP give out to help people make this distinction.
INLPTA is an international co-operative association of aligned NLP Trainers and Master trainers who have agreed to abide by and uphold INLPTA’s standards of quality, professionalism and ethics in their NLP training.
INLPTA practitioner trainings are at least 15 days in length (120 hours minimum) and successful students will receive certiﬁcates with INLPTA seals which are recognised and respected all over the world.
International NLP Trainers Association (www.inlpta.co.uk)
Whilst an American organisation they are popular with training organisations in the UK who have non UK accredited trainers as part of their training team or use them to certify their courses.
ITA – International Trainers Academy (www.itanlp.com)
John Grinder, Carmen Bostic St Clair and Michael Carroll formed The International Trainers Academy as a way to ensure that NLP Trainers have the highest standard of training, before offering NLP courses to the public.
These are the main ones that Trainers use in the UK, if you are considering using a Trainer who doesn’t belong to one of these organisation please check out their credentials very carefully before joining a course.
What you can do with your Qualiﬁcation
When deciding how to choose your NLP Trainer many people want to know what they can do with their NLP Certification. Some want study NLP for their own self improvement and others also want to use their certification to further their career.
Coaching is a growing profession in the UK and with your NLP Practitioner Certiﬁcation you can set up your coaching practice. If you are going into Coaching make sure you join a professional association which covers you in terms of any complaints, that you have professional indemnity insurance and that you get regular coaching supervision.
After NLP Practitioner some people go on to study at Master Practitioner level. Again, the content of a Master Practitioner course can vary a lot! Once you are NLP Practitioner qualiﬁed you will be able to easily assess what’s right for you. We always check the practitioner certificate of anyone wanting to study master practitioner with us.
Interesting in studying to become a Therapist or Counsellor?
If you are considering using your NLP skills in therapeutic context, make sure you choose an NLP Practitioner training of at least 120 hours as this is the minimum course length accepted by schools and organisations specialising in this ﬁeld, it is also best if your Trainer is a BACP or UKCP registered psychotherapist. Start with the end in mind, so if you are considering training as a therapist check out what’s required by the organisations before you commit to an NLP Practitioner Course. The contacts in the UK for Psychotherapy using NLP are:
Beeleaf Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy (www.beeleaf.com)
Awaken School (www.awakenschool.co.uk)
We hope this guide has been helpful in supporting you in choosing an NLP Training that is right for you. Remember, It’s always useful to speak to the organisation and get a sense of them and where possible get recommendations from others who have attended their course before you book.