- The Market – Coaching as a profession still remains at an evolutionary stage in its development and understanding. The market is characterized by multiple individuals creating their own coaching practice with a minimal amount of collaboration. This is meeting the needs of the individual coaches but is preventing the profession from creating the scale and recognition necessary to make coaching more mainstream. Executive Coaching remains widely accepted and valued, while Life Coaching needs further refinement and definition. Life Coaches need to be clear in terms of niche definition to better help the public understand the type of service provided.
- Credibility – Barriers to entry remain relatively low with those serious about this new undertaking as a coach at least investing in being formally trained and certified. Coaches may not be as classroom prepared as therapists or counselors but are receiving much more practical hands on training. This in turn becomes the vehicle through which they can draw on their own knowledge, experience and passion to serve clients effectively. The International Coach Federation continues to gain traction in terms of recognition as the leading professional body of coaches. This alignment with ICF, whether through membership, participation in an ICF accredited coach training program or ICF certification itself, are all important stepping stones to advancing the profession and the individual coach in a credible manner.
- Corporate – More organizations are embracing the coaching concepts and looking to use the coaching model and tools as a much more effective way of managing / leading their people. In addition progressive companies are looking to develop internal coaching capabilities in order to make what might be viewed as “expensive external executive coaching” more accessible to mid level management and high potential individuals. The primary participants are the HR function but management level positions, in all disciplines, are also embracing coaching to help develop more effective communication and interpersonal skills.
The services provided through the skillful execution of the coaching process undoubtedly provide a value on many levels. The key to the accelerated growth of the Coaching Profession is the articulation of this value and the relentless pursuit of helping clients reach their full potential.
Post By: Bill Sex – CEO New England Coaching and Past President ICFNE