How the IAC Learning Agreement Informs our Work

by DeeAnna Merz Nagel and Kate Anthony

Editor's note: As part of our ongoing series of interviews that highlight IAC members' experiences with the new Learning Agreement process, this blog post portrays how it can be just as effectively applied to an organization as it can to an individual. You will also find a unique opportunity to engage with this organization and other IAC members in online discussions about the IAC Masteries®. If you would like to share your own story about creating an IAC Learning Agreement, please email

What was your experience in submitting a Learning Agreement Proposal?

To become an IAC Licensee of the Masteries we agreed to work toward the IAC-Practitioner level credential. The IAC-Practitioner process seemed to be a learning experience that we could extend to our community and fold into our teachings at the Online Coach Institute. While we each have our own Learning Agreement and personal goals about sharing the Masteries with other professionals (therapists and coaches alike), we have common objectives that overlap in our Learning Agreements. It was a simple process and we collaborated on deciding what our activities should be—joint activities that fit with our work and separate ones in working towards separate coaching credentials.

What are some of the activities you designated in your proposal?

One objective is the development of a course that discusses the Masteries in light of working online and how the Masteries relate to concepts such as telepresence and online disinhibition. We decided we wanted to bring the Masteries to our students regardless of what courses they might be taking through the Online Coach Institute. As a practitioner in the UK, Kate extended hers to include discussing the Masteries with colleagues within the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy’s Coaching division.

We found the Masteries to be the most comprehensive set of coach competencies and knew we wanted to incorporate the Masteries into our work as Coach Educators.

What will you measure or track over the year in preparation for submitting your Completed Learning Agreement?

We will have full transcripts of our online collaborations via our secure forum available to us, the number of which will grow throughout the year. It is these discussions about how the Masteries could apply to working online that will inform the creation of the Masteries Online Course—that will be the true measure of the year when it is complete.

What are some suggestions for coaches who are designing their own Learning Agreement?

Bear in mind that it is possible to overcomplicate it!

What did you appreciate about the process?

The interview prior to the process was pleasant, professional and realistic about where the Learning Agreement could or should be trimmed.

How do you hope the process will evolve?

Our goal is to create a vibrant community of like-thinking people, and we are looking forward to the discussion.

What else would you like VOICE readers and the global coaching community to know about the new Learning Agreement process?

We have created a discussion board called Applying the Masteries to Our Work in the Online Coach Institute's private and secure Consultation and Business forum. If you are an IAC member with an interest in mentoring others, we invite you join us at the forum! We hope to develop a vibrant discussion with seasoned IAC coaches and "newbies" alike. If you are interested, just email us at with your name, IAC member number and preferred email address. We will register you and send you a welcome packet.


DeeAnna Nagel

Kate Anthony  
Kate Anthony and DeeAnna Nagel are leading experts and trainers on the use of technology in coaching and counseling. They are co-editors and co-authors of textbooks, articles, chapters and journals on the subject. They co-founded the Online Coach Institute and TILT Magazine—Therapeutic Innovations in Light of Technology.


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