In the last few years I have been through five accreditation processes.
None them were my kind of fun. So what could have possibly possessed me?
You see, I am not exactly a fan of spending hours trawling through past diaries and files, assembling evidence that I am who I say I am, and I do what I say I do.
I have better ways of spending my time. In actual fact even the ironing looked more interesting and developmental.
Nor do I delight in setting myself up to be judged by people. Particularly people who are, very often, not as experienced or qualified as I am. I think it takes me back to primary school, when some girls started a “club”. Their rules, their criteria – they started it, so they get to choose who belongs and doesn’t. (Wasn’t it Groucho Marx who said that he did not want to belong to a club that would have him as a member?)
In the absence of legislation, in a world of self regulation there is a plethora of organisations giving out certificates and membership to say that you are fit to practice your chosen profession. Some are meaningless – you merely have to pay. Others are a genuine attempt to differentiate in a rigorous and fair way those that make the grade.
As you can see I am not a fan.
However there are a lot of things in life, that whilst not liking, I will defend wholeheartedly and without any discomfort or hypocrisy. Abortion, private healthcare, press self regulation, wind turbines; charitable giving, to name a few. Oh yes, and professional accreditations.
Why? Because, quite simply, the converse is unconscionable.
Without the professional bodies offering an accreditation process there would be even more of a complete free for all than there is at the moment. One can set oneself up as a coach, counsellor or therapist not only without accreditation, but with no training, no qualifications, no experience, no insurance and no supervision.
And whilst none of these in fact make you good – accreditation at least offers some credibility for the professional and some protection for the client in a “buyer beware” market.
So whatever you do for a living, get over yourself and get the credentials.