Center for Coaching Certification

Diversity and Connection in Coaching

What is diversity and connection?  Merriam-Webster says diversity is: “the condition of having or being composed of differing elements: variety especially; the inclusion / regard of different types of people (such as people of different races or cultures) in a group or organization.”  The Merriam Webster definition of connection includes: “the act of connecting;the state of being connected; a relation of personal intimacy; coherence; continuity.

The reason for using the word connection instead of inclusion is that inclusion in the Google dictionary is, “the action or state of including or of being included within a group or structure” which can imply that a group must allow an inclusion and thus retains control.  At the Center for Coaching Certification, we value everyone as an equal and support achieving equity. Diversity and Connection in Coaching

Coaching supports diversity and connection.  It starts with being open and accepting of all.  It is furthered through supporting others to also be open and accepting of all.  Examples of coaching questions that support diversity and connection include:

  • What is your thinking about people who are different?
  • What do you think they think?
  • What thinking is respectful?
  • How does your thinking impact workplace relationships?
  • How do your feelings impact workplace relationships?
  • What are ideal parameters for workplace relationships?
  • What are the reasons for having different people work together?
  • What are the benefits of having different people work together?
  • What are appropriate ground rules for different people working together?
  • How does having different people working together add value?
  • How can you maximize the variety of skills and perspectives?

Coaching Certification combined with coach training in Diversity and Connection provide the skills and the knowledge to support diversity and connection in the coaching profession and with the clients we all serve.

 

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Coaching Teams

Coaching is a fabulous tool for individuals and equally fabulous for supporting teams.  Awareness of the potential is increasing rapidly.  Following are some basic insights. Coaching Teams

What are the reasons for coaching a team?

  • Manage Conflict
  • Improve Relationships
  • Increase Productivity
  • Increase Engagement
  • Create or Enhance Culture

What are the steps for providing team coaching?

  • Define Purpose – for example, decide if the coaching is to focus on relationships, tasks, or processes.
  • Objectives – define specifically what you want to gain through coaching.
  • Approach – develop the approach for coaching and working with each other.
  • Processes – create processes to use during the coaching.
  • Engage in Coaching – create buy-in with everyone involved and engage fully in the process.

What are some tips, techniques, and tools for teach coaching?

  • Empower the team to choose focus and process.
  • Invite the team to share, reflect, brainstorm, and decide.
  • Adjust to personal and learning styles.
  • Keep it positive and proactive.
  • Consider using an assessment such as the DISC Team Assessment.
  • Co-create Tools for team awareness, tasks, and processes.

Once implemented, what does it take for the team coaching to run smoothly?

  • Assess the impact and effectiveness of the coaching.
  • Measure the results with metrics on engagement and productivity, outcomes with tasks and objectives, and qualitative feedback on relationships and individual impressions.
  • Adjust focus or processes to maximize the opportunities and enhance results.
  • Acknowledge the improvements, progress, and successes.

What are the opportunities for learning and developing team coaching skills and opportunities?

  • Advanced coach training and continuing education programs.
  • Surveying current client organizations.
  • Networking with prospective clients and considering team coaching as a possible solution.

Team coaching is a benefit for clients and an opportunity for coaching business.

 

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How do I decide if hiring a coach is the right move?

If you are thinking or wondering any of the following:

  • “Sometimes life gets so busy I don’t know if I’m coming or going.”
  • “All my ideas and thoughts jumble together.”
  • “I am unsure which direction I want to take.”
  • “I want to figure out my best strategy.”
  • “I want to build my confidence.”
  • “I want to manage my time and get organized.”
  • “I want to find the right job for me.”
  • “I want to earn a promotion.”
  • “I want to improve my skills.”
  • “I want to earn a promotion.”

Then coaching is likely a great opportunity. How do I decide if hiring a coach is the right move?

How will a coach help me get a plan, define a dream, or achieve a goal?  A coach will take you through the process of exploring opportunities and possibilities, considering challenges, identifying resources, creating strategies, defining action steps, and managing accountability.  A coach is a partner with the training and competencies to empower you being your best self.

The research shows the impact of coaching:

  • AMOCO Corporation, now part of British Petroleum, evaluated coaching over a ten-year period. The investigators reported that “compared to other AMOCO managers, coaching participants consistently demonstrated improved performance, increased ratings of potential for advancement and 50% higher average salary increases.  Moreover, the participants themselves attributed these results directly to the coaching they had received.”
  • Fortune Magazine cites an average return on investment of 600%.
  • MetrixGlobal LLC found coaching produced a 529% ROI and the financial benefits from employee retention boosted the overall ROI to 788%

How does coaching work to help me move forward?  Reflect on the difference between being told what to do and creating your own solutions.  A coach is trained through their coaching certification to empower you to discover your own answers and develop your own strategies.

 

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How do I determine if I will be a good coach?

When people ask this question, my reaction is often that if you care enough to ask the question you care enough to learn how to be a great coach.

What are the values and skills of a great coach?  Often they include:

  • Compassion
  • Empathy
  • A desire to make a difference
  • A willingness to be open
  • Vulnerability
  • Commitment to learning
  • Confidence in the ability of the client to achieve

Additionally, coach training is designed to develop the How do I determine if I will be a good coach? of a coach:

  1. Meeting Ethical Guidelines and Professional
  2. Establishing the Coaching Agreement
  3. Establishing Trust and Intimacy with the Client
  4. Coaching Presence
  5. Active Listening
  6. Powerful Questioning
  7. Direct Communication
  8. Creating Awareness
  9. Designing Actions
  10. Planning and Goal Setting
  11. Managing Progress and Accountability

How can I tell which coach training is my best bet?  The single most important consideration when choosing a coach training program is that it is approved by the International Coach Federation (ICF).  The second most important consideration is whether the school is a member of the Association of Coach Training Organizations (ACTO).  Then look at additional accreditations offered.  Check out the reviews and testimonials.  Talk to the team at the school and talk with the trainer.

To learn more about the Center for Coaching Certification, check out our program reviews on the SHRM site and video testimonials on YouTube.  Learn about our team members and trainers.

Connecting with the CCC team is also an opportunity to explore one-on-one your experience and skills and how they fit with becoming a coach.

 

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How do I listen?

Many perceive themselves good listeners.  At the same time, upon observing themselves and reflecting, many also realize their listening leaves something to be desired.  This is normal and it is also worth noticing and changing.

What gets in the way of listening?  Distractions, noise, hurrying, tiredness, thinking about other things, too many talking at once, or a lack of interest.  In addition, as humans, when someone is talking, we may be so focused on our response we miss hearing what they are saying.  Often, we are analyzing the speaker, the message, or how it is being said.  When someone says something that reminds us of our own experience, we get so caught up in remembering our experience we miss hearing what they said. How do I listen?

How can coach training help me listen better?  During coach training we talk about active listening, listening with the intention to understand.  Rephrasing, defined as succinctly summarizing what was said using key words of the other person, is both discussed and practiced.  Reflecting back what is behind the words deepens the practice of rephrasing.  As coaches continue to learn and practice, they use cumulative listening, listening over time and recalling what was said in the past that is applicable now.  Coaches learn to listen on many levels considering context, circumstances, personalities, motivations, etc.

In the same way coach training teaches and develops listening skills, working with a coach who has completed their coaching certification is an opportunity to experience being listened to as well as to observe and learn from listening being modeled.

The benefits of listening, while often forgotten, are also obvious.  It saves time, prevents misunderstandings, enhances communication, improves relationships, and makes life more enjoyable.

 

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Religious Beliefs versus Sexual Orientation: What do you think? Ethical Challenges Series

A coach and client have been working together for six months with a focus on the client’s business.  The client wants to discuss a challenge they are having with their same-sex partner.  The coach is religious and feels they cannot be effective because they feel same-sex relationships are wrong.  The coach has completed their coach training and is a member of the ICF and accountable to the Code of Ethics.

Possible Responses:

  • The coach can inform the client of their religious beliefs and let the client choose whether or not to continue.
  • The coach can inform the client that they have a personal conflict and remove themselves.
  • The coach can determine to give the client their best as a coach regardless of their own values.
  • The coach can work on their own beliefs to be open to all.
  • The coach can ask the client to support them in being open and accepting.
  • The coach can share the conflict and their desire to be open and ask the client how they want to handle it.
  • What else?

Refer to the ICF Code of Ethics:

4) Refrain from unlawful discrimination in occupational activities, including age, race, gender orientation, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, national origin or disability.

8) Strive at all times to recognize my personal issues that may impair, conflict with or interfere with my coaching performance or my professional coaching relationships. I will promptly seek the relevant professional assistance and determine the action to be taken, including whether it is appropriate to suspend or terminate my coaching relationship(s) whenever the facts and circumstances necessitate.

AND https://coachfederation.org/icf-ethics

Q: How can I better understand what determines discrimination when coaching clients?
A: Refer to state, provincial, or national law to determine what is considered discrimination in your area.

How do you recommend it be handled?

 

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Conflict of Interest: What do you think? Ethical Challenges Series

A coach has a client who owns their own hair salon.  The coach’s friend decides to start their own business – a hair salon – and will be a competitor of the client.  The coach has completed their coach training and is a member of the ICF and accountable to the Code of Ethics. Conflict of Interest  What do you think?

Possible Responses:

  • The coach simply continues coaching.
  • The coach ends the coaching engagement with no explanation.
  • The coach explains the conflict to the client and ends the coaching engagement.
  • The coach reflects on their own ability to continue coaching, decides they can continue, explains the possible conflict to the client, and gives the client the choice whether to continue.
  • The coach reflects on their own ability to continue coaching, decides they cannot continue, explains the conflict to the client, and removes themselves from the coaching relationship..
  • What else?

Refer to the ICF Code of Ethics:

8) Strive at all times to recognize my personal issues that may impair, conflict with or interfere with my coaching performance or my professional coaching relationships. I will promptly seek the relevant professional assistance and determine the action to be taken, including whether it is appropriate to suspend or terminate my coaching relationship(s) whenever the facts and circumstances necessitate.

13) Seek to be conscious of any conflict or potential conflict of interest, openly disclose any such conflict and offer to remove myself when a conflict arises.

22) Respect the client’s right to terminate the coaching relationship at any point during the process, subject to the provisions of the agreement. I shall remain alert to indications that there is a shift in the value received from the coaching relationship.

23) Encourage the client or sponsor to make a change if I believe the client or sponsor would be better served by another coach or by another resource and suggest my client seek the services of other professionals when deemed necessary or appropriate.

24) Maintain the strictest levels of confidentiality with all client and sponsor information unless release is required by law.

AND https://coachfederation.org/ethics-faqs

Q: I am coaching Jane, and a peer of hers, Alice, requests me to be her coach. Do I need to let Alice know I am already coaching Jane?
A: No, you do not need to. Unless you have Jane’s consent, you may not even mention it. Be aware, however, that this could present conflicts with confidentiality. Potential general conflicts should be clarified with each party.

Q: May I accept a coaching contract for a corporate mid-level manager when I am already coaching his boss?
A: You may accept this contract if you think that you can maintain an objective stance and confidentiality with both clients. You can discuss in general terms with the first client how he would feel about you coaching someone else in the company. Be aware it could present a conflict of interest while coaching, however, in hiring and firing decisions, etc.

Q: May I coach a family member or friend?
A: Yes, as long as you explain in advance how your role as a coach is different than your role as a friend or family member.

How do you recommend it be handled?

 

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Record Keeping: What do you think? Ethical Challenges Series

A coach keeps notes on paper and stores them in a locked file cabinet.  The coach’s house is broken into, the file cabinet is busted open, and the files thrown all over their lawn.  Or, on a similar note, the notes are on a computer and the computer is stolen.  The coach has completed their coach training and is a member of the ICF and accountable to the Code of Ethics. Record Keeping

Possible Responses regarding paper notes:

  • The coach cleans up their lawn themselves as soon as they discover it.
  • The coach asks neighbors to help so the clean-up is faster.
  • The coach cleans up everything and notifies their clients about what happened.
  • What else?

Possible Responses regarding computer notes:

  • The coach explains the confidential nature of the information on the computer to the police and asks for additional help.
  • The coach notifies the clients of the potential breach.
  • The coach lost their client information because it was on the computer so when clients contact the coach, the coach explains what happened.
  • What else?

Refer to the ICF Code of Ethics:

11) Maintain, store and dispose of any records, including electronic files and communications, created during my coaching engagements in a manner that promotes confidentiality, security and privacy and complies with any applicable laws and agreements.

potential value of the coaching process or of me as a coach.

24) Maintain the strictest levels of confidentiality with all client and sponsor information unless release is required by law.

25) Have a clear agreement about how coaching information will be exchanged among coach, client and sponsor.

26) Have a clear agreement when acting as a coach, coach mentor, coaching supervisor or trainer, with both client and sponsor, student, mentee, or supervisee about the conditions under which confidentiality may not be maintained (e.g., illegal activity, pursuant to valid court order or subpoena; imminent or likely risk of danger to self or to others; etc.) and make sure both client and sponsor, student, mentee, or supervisee voluntarily and knowingly agree in writing to that limit of confidentiality. Where I reasonably believe that because one of the above circumstances is applicable, I may need to inform appropriate authorities.

AND https://coachfederation.org/ethics-faqs

Q: How long do I have to keep client records?
A: There is no ICF guideline at this time. You should check your local and national laws and regulations for compliance guidelines. If you are audited for income taxes, be sure to protect confidentiality.

Q: How should I dispose of records?
A: To the best of your ability you should delete all online and electronic records, as well as shred paper records.

How do you recommend it be handled?

 

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Confidentiality What do you think? Ethical Challenges Series

A coaching client’s manager wants a full report on what is discussed during coaching sessions.  They threaten to stop paying for the coaching unless they receive it.  The coach has completed their coach training and is a member of the ICF and accountable to the Code of Ethics. Confidentiality

Possible Responses:

  • The coach explains that the information is confidential.
  • The coach asks the client what information they want shared and shares only what they are told they can share.
  • The coach and the client co-create a report and the client gives permission for it to be shared.
  • The coach asks the client for written permission to share and asks that what can be shared be stated in the document.
  • The coach explains the information is confidential and then the manager goes to the IT department and has them get the notes.
  • What else?

Refer to the ICF Code of Ethics:

11) Maintain, store and dispose of any records, including electronic files and communications, created during my coaching engagements in a manner that promotes confidentiality, security and privacy and complies with any applicable laws and agreements.

potential value of the coaching process or of me as a coach.

18) Carefully explain and strive to ensure that, prior to or at the initial meeting, my coaching client and sponsor(s) understand the nature of coaching, the nature and limits of confidentiality, financial arrangements, and any other terms of the coaching agreement.

19) Have a clear coaching service agreement with my clients and sponsor(s) before beginning the coaching relationship and honor this agreement. The agreement shall include the roles, responsibilities and rights of all parties involved.

24) Maintain the strictest levels of confidentiality with all client and sponsor information unless release is required by law.

25) Have a clear agreement about how coaching information will be exchanged among coach, client and sponsor.

26) Have a clear agreement when acting as a coach, coach mentor, coaching supervisor or trainer, with both client and sponsor, student, mentee, or supervisee about the conditions under which confidentiality may not be maintained (e.g., illegal activity, pursuant to valid court order or subpoena; imminent or likely risk of danger to self or to others; etc.) and make sure both client and sponsor, student, mentee, or supervisee voluntarily and knowingly agree in writing to that limit of confidentiality. Where I reasonably believe that because one of the above circumstances is applicable, I may need to inform appropriate authorities.

AND https://coachfederation.org/ethics-faqs

  1. Do I have to provide client records in case of subpoena or ethical complaint?
    A: This will vary by country and jurisdiction, but generally, yes. Consider carefully what you put in your records.

Q: How long do I have to keep client records?
A: There is no ICF guideline at this time. You should check your local and national laws and regulations for compliance guidelines. If you are audited for income taxes, be sure to protect confidentiality.

Q: How should I dispose of records?
A: To the best of your ability you should delete all online and electronic records, as well as shred paper records.

Q: Is verbal permission for release of confidentiality acceptable or must I obtain it in writing?
A: It is more solid and irrefutable in writing.

Q: The supervisor of my new client has a coaching outcome that he does not want the client to know about. I am being paid out of the supervisor’s budget. May I keep this information from my client?
A: This sets up an ethical conflict. How can you coach someone without having clarity and an agreement about what is being coached? Whatever you put in your agreement that all three sign is what is acceptable.

Q: May I coach a business client who has some personal outcomes that are not shared with the sponsor?
A: Coaching for personal outcomes is an integral part of all professional coaching. Whatever is stated in the contract or agreement will govern what can be shared.

How do you recommend it be handled?

 

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A Gift: What do you think? Ethical Challenges Series

A coaching client offers their box seat tickets to a big game to the coach.  The coach has completed their coach training and is a member of the ICF and accountable to the Code of Ethics. A Gift: What do you think?

Possible Responses:

  • The coach declines the tickets.
  • The coach accepts the tickets.
  • The coach says they will take the tickets if they can pay for them.
  • The coach barters a free coaching session in exchange for the tickets.
  • The coach explains accepting the tickets could be perceived as a conflict of interest and invites the client to discuss implications and set boundaries.
  • The coach explains they have a policy of not accepting gifts over a pre-determined amount.
  • What else?

Refer to the ICF Code of Ethics:

15) Disclose to my client and the sponsor(s) all anticipated compensation from third parties that I may receive for referrals of clients or pay to receive clients.

16) Honor an equitable coach/client relationship, regardless of the form of compensation.

AND https://coachfederation.org/ethics-faqs

Q: I received a surprise gift of baseball tickets from my realtor after I referred my client to her. Must I tell my client I received these tickets?
A: If the gift was not anticipated and happens after the referral is made, no disclosure is necessary.

How do you recommend it be handled?

 

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