Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Summary Of Comments Regarding The ICF Credentialing Proposal Available

Posted on Wednesday, November 25, 2009 by International Coach Federation

Summary of comments regarding the ICF Credentialing proposal as of November 17, 2009

On September 9, 2009, the ICF Board of Directors presented a proposal to the entire ICF membership and other stakeholders that outlined enhancements to the existing credentialing program, and invited comments and questions.

Thank you for participating in the process and sharing your thoughts. In reading the individual responses one thing is clear—the respondents share a commitment to the ICF Credentialing program. The comments provide insight into members’ and other stakeholders’ thinking, not only as they relate to the proposal, but to the broader issues of ICF Credentialing overall. The comments will enrich and inform future discussions.

Two documents presenting a summary of all the varied comments received as well as a compilation of all actual comments are available for download. Download summary document (PDF-5 pages). Download compilation of actual comments (PDF-94 pages).

Additional teleconference calls have been scheduled for the month of December:

  • Wednesday, December 9: 3 p.m. (New York), 9 p.m. (Paris); Thursday, December 10: 4 a.m. (Hong Kong);
  • Thursday, December 10: 9 a.m. (New York), 3 p.m. (Paris), 10 p.m. (Hong Kong);
  • Tuesday, December 15: 4 p.m. (New York), 10 p.m. (Paris); Wednesday, December 16: 5 a.m. (Hong Kong); and
  • Thursday, December 17: 3 p.m. (New York), 9 p.m. (Paris); Wednesday, December 16: 4 a.m. (Hong Kong).

The above calls will use the following bridge line: 866.214.0180, pin 1099. Additional dialing instructions, if needed, are available here.

Please review the above mentioned documents for information on immediate next steps.


  1. Kudos to the ICF for finally creating some way of collating the various ideas and sharing their efforts.

    However, anybody who has been following this discussion at the various sites should recognize a disconnect between the summary document created by the ICF and the actual comments.

    1. Calling one of the categories of comments as "misunderstandings" is more misleading than accurate; unless the ICF is characterizing its own viewpoints as "misunderstandings." The majority of critical comments about the ISO were not based on misunderstandings; indeed, they were presented by individuals with considerable experience with or knowledge of ISO.

    2. The comment characterizations created by the ICF read more like the lead prompts of an FAQ. They hardly reflect the tone, direction, and criticism leveled at the ICF.

    3. Missing completely are the dozens of comments that directly criticise the ICF on this issue. What happened to to "summarizing" these comments?

    Most executive summaries include theme interpretation or analysis, and not just rudimentary classifications. It might serve as a draft document, but only people who have been involved from the start will probably recognize how little it actually contributes to this discussion.

  2. Dear ICF colleagues,
    I have read with much interest the "Summary of comments regarding the ICF Credentialing proposal as of November 17, 2009" and would like to seize the opportunity or your renewed invitation for contributions, to submit the following:

    - I am a rather junior coach, trained and certified by a properly qualified and ICF recognized School in Switzerland (IDC - Institut de Coaching, Geneva). I will be completing very soon a Master degree in Coaching offered by this school.

    - I have not applied for ICF certification, but would not quite yet qualify for PCC.

    - My reading of the present system is that it is complicated and more important: obscure to most of our clients. What they basically want to know is whether we are properly certified coaches or not. ICF is a recognized criteria, but ACC, PCC and MCC mostly mean nothing to them !

    - The clients most important criteria for hiring any of us seems to be mostly related to:
    1) reputation (provable experience, word of mouth) and
    2) if we are part of a large and reputable HR (coaching) firm.

    - In terms of comparing degrees received by trained coaches, I believe that it would be easier for ICF to ensure (as it already does) that training schools meet certain strict criteria. But if you compare today MDs (for example !) having received their authorizations of practice in different countries of the world, you will find many varying levels of expertise...Their profession and official degree is nevertheless universally recognized.

    - My suggestion therefore would be for ICF to examine the possibility of:
    1) concentrating its efforts on ensuring a high level of training from the Schools it vouches (and why not raise those standards higher ?)
    2) absolutely refusing to give a membership status to anyone who has not been certified by such schools (There are today some ICF "members" who publicize this fact for their benefit and who have not even ever been trained as coaches ! They nevertheless appear officially as ICF listed coaches) and
    3) concentrate on recognizing only two degrees (levels): that of "Certified Professional Coach" and that of "Master coach" (or whatever other title is decided upon). The number of years of experience, number of clients etc... would be for the client to enquire about just as he will choose an experienced doctor or rather someone who has many years of practice.

    Kind regards,

    Francis Amar

    Avenue Eugène-Pittard 1a
    CH-1206 Genève
    Tel: +41 79 366 40 29


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