Book Review: Law & Ethics in Coaching

Book Review: Law & Ethics in Coaching

Law & Ethics in Coaching, How to Solve and Avoid Difficult Problems in Your Practice by Patrick Williams and Sharon K. Anderson (with a number of additional contributors) is a book that addresses areas of relevance to everyone in coaching.

Summary – The chapters of the book include:

  1. The Profession of Coaching – Explores the rise of coaching and how it is differentiated from other professions because of the legal implications.
  2. Foundations of Professional Ethics – Provides insights of ethics overall and their application in various professions.
  3. Ethical Choice – Reviews several models with an awareness that each person comes with different perceptions of ethical choices.
  4. Competence – Developing competency as an ethical necessity for coaches.
  5. Developing and Maintaining Clear Trust – Focus, agreements, and confidentiality are both ethical and foundational to trust in coaching.
  6. Multiple-Role Relationships in Coaching – A brief overview that refers to how the Code of Ethics addresses this indirectly.
  7. Ethical Use of Assessments in Coaching – Assessments generally require a separate certification and coaching following an assessment maximizes the benefits.
  8. Legal Issues and Solutions in Coaching – Discusses essential basics including business structure and name, contracting, regulatory issues, intellectual property, insurance, and emerging issues.
  9. The Intersection of Culture and Ethics – Considers how cultural differences interacts with ethics.
  10. Coaching to Come – Shares perceptions and ideas on the future of coaching.

The Good:

Among the first books addressing these areas for coaches, this book provides insights, points of consideration, plus specific ethical and legal tips for coaches.  The information is directly and immediately applicable for coaches as professionals.

The Bad:

The information on confidentiality is very limited in terms of interacting with employers and employees in coaching relationships plus protecting the confidentiality of notes, particularly if a company computer or email is used.


A must-read for coaches!

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