When I first leaned that the IAC was looking to fill the editor’s position, I was curious about those 12,000 readers and the quality of the publication. I poked around the website and asked a couple coaches I know who are already part of the group. I spent as much time on the letter I wrote volunteering for the job as any cover letter for any resume I ever sent anywhere! The fact that I had to interview for the position speaks volumes about the expectations your leadership has for the publication.
New editors always have new ideas. And I’m hoping to make some changes to the VOICE to make it easier for you to read and get to the parts you’re most interested in. My first priority is to make sure that the publication is useful. I sure don’t want to waste anyone’s time!
But for now, I invite you to check out these articles in this issue:
Angela Spaxman moved from Editor of the VOICE to President of the IAC. See what she has to say here.
IAC Treasurer Jean Gran writes here about how the IAC manages its money and what can you learn from that that will be useful in your own business.
Lorraine Lee tells about how the Hong Kong coaches geared up for Part 2 of the certification process. Learn how you can do the same thing in your area. Read about it here.
Nina East writes here about preparing recordings to submit for certification Part 2.
Janice Hunter gets wisdom from wobbly grocery store carts. Read about it here.
Pay attention to the new mailing address for certification submissions. Click here.
Please, do me a favor. Drop me a note if you have a comment, a question or a suggestion for something you’d like to know more about—even if it’s an idea you wish someone else would write about! You can reach me at email@example.com.
The team is changing. This month marks my first as your President. I’m so excited to be standing before you! It is an honour and a challenge that I relish.
After almost 2 ½ years, our President, Natalie Tucker Miller, and Vice President, Diane Krause-Stetson, have stepped down to take on less demanding roles in our organization. It’s no exaggeration to say that the IAC would not exist without them. That’s how much we owe them, along with all the other volunteers who have supported them. During their term the IAC took some crucial steps:
We instituted membership fees and became a financially viable organization.
We re-launched the website and the VOICE.
We completed writing and publishing the IAC Coaching Masteries™
We updated our entire certification system to be based on the IAC Coaching Masteries™
It’s hard to believe that all of this, along with the day-to-day running of the organization, was done almost entirely through volunteers. Our fabulous Virtual Assistant, Diana McFarlane, looks after much of the administration and we use contractors for some technical projects. But apart from that, it is volunteer brains and brawn that gets things done at the IAC.
So you can imagine that I may feel daunted from time to time! I am certainly expecting to face many challenges in my new role and I intend to relish the personal growth that will come as a result. My rewards will be three-fold:
To forward the vision of the IAC to create a worldwide, progressive, transparent system of coach certification that welcomes coaches from all backgrounds and encourages innovation;
To be inspired by the amazing coaches who volunteer their time at the IAC, working with joy and a spirit of abundance;
To grow as a leader who can enlist support and inspire action toward a shared vision.
What do you envision that is worth pursuing? How will you reward yourself for taking on a big challenge?
If you’d like to join our team, please let me know. We are counting on your support.
Have you ever wondered, “What happens to the annual membership fee I pay to the IAC?” If so, I think you’ve asked a very important question and it’s time you knew the answer. As the Treasurer for the IAC, I’d like to take you on a behind the scenes tour of the IAC’s financial life. You’ll learn how the organization manages and uses the money you entrust to it. So, let’s get started.
First of all, the IAC is incorporated as a non-profit business league. This means our reason for being is to represent the interests of our members. By pooling our money and energy we can accomplish things that none of us could do alone. The IAC exists in order to serve you, its members and the larger coaching community world wide.
Next let’s take a peek at the Finance Committee. The Finance Committee begins each year by asking, “How can we best serve the needs of our members with the resources we have?” That’s a familiar question, isn’t it? As both individuals and businesses we all face the task of determining how we can meet our needs, accomplish our goals and fulfill our mission using the resources we have.
That question kicks off the budget process. Does the word budget immediately make you cringe and think of old skinflints like Scrooge? Budgets do have a reputation for being restrictive and limiting. So let’s drop the “b” word and talk about a spending plan instead. Do you notice how much more empowering that feels? Now we are talking about personal responsibility, authenticity and the freedom to make good choices that serve our mission. After lots of input, discussion and research the Finance Committee presents the spending plan to the Board of Governors for review and approval.
The process of creating a spending plan is just as important as the end result. Working out a spending plan on paper allows the IAC to try on different ways of using the available resources without spending a dime. Sometimes ideas that sound great just don’t work when you crunch the numbers. Then because the plan is evaluated by many eyes, we can catch potential problems before they occur and make sure we are getting the best return on the organization’s resources.
Spending plans aren’t only about spending, or only about money for that matter. After all, you can’t spend what you don’t have. That’s where support from annual memberships comes in. Last year the Finance Committee used the spending plan to determine the IAC’s first membership fee. We projected the costs to keep the organization alive, thriving and growing. We looked at the dues of similar membership organizations. Only then could we see that our first impulse to set a lower fee just wouldn’t sustain the IAC. It’s ironic but by charging too little we would have been wasting your money. I’ll bet many coaches out there can identify with this dilemma.
In addition, spending plans are about lots more than money. Spending plans help us plan the best use of all of our resources not only money but also time and energy. At this point we are an all volunteer organization. You could say that we are fueled by love. If we don’t consider the time and energy costs of our plans and goals we risk burning out the most valuable asset we have, our dedicated volunteers around this ever shrinking globe. The process of creating an annual spending plan allows us to show our gratitude for our resources by conserving them and using them purposefully.
The final stop on this tour will be a look at the specific expenditures that the IAC makes annually for the benefit of members and the coaching community world wide. These expenditures fall into four categories:
First, we have basic operating expenses that keep our doors open. These include accounting costs, liability insurance and a small amount for administrative support.
Second, we have costs to maintain ongoing services to members. These include:
Coaching certification based on demonstration of masterful coaching is our primary mission. Certification expenses include paying the IAC’s amazing team of certifiers and a virtual assistant for administration. Certification expenses are mostly covered by certification fees.
The IAC’s website provides a searchable database of members, access to member benefits such as professional liability insurance and information promoting coaching to the public. As we have grown, the complexity of our website has grown. While much volunteer effort has gone into the website we now have a consulting firm doing much of the technical work.
The IAC’s monthly newsletter, the VOICE, has a circulation of over 12,000. The VOICE informs, connects and inspires paying members and a vast network of subscribers around the world. It has been our main avenue of outreach and promotion. Volunteers write and edit the VOICE with some support from a virtual assistant.
Third, we have a category of expenditures which could be called the IAC’s growing edge. No one can do everything at once. In addition to keeping the doors open and maintaining ongoing commitments, we also dedicate time, energy and money to new projects for the benefit of the membership. This year these projects include the following:
Transitioning the certification process from the 15 Proficiencies to the IAC Coaching Masteries™ and training new certifiers.
Improving the functionality and user interface on the website and setting up a merchant account so we can take credit cards.
Legally protecting and licensing the IAC Coaching Masteries™.
Expanding the IAC’s outreach and promotion by sending representatives to important coaching conferences and advertising in coaching journals.
And finally, the IAC is committed to creating a solid financial base to sustain the organization for the long haul by setting aside financial reserves to cover large projects or unforeseen contingencies in the future.
A financially healthy organization is pretty much like a financially healthy household or business. And financial health is about a lot more than money. The IAC is fueled not only by the money of the membership but also by the energy, time and creativity of its members, all working for a common good. Thanks for joining me on this little tour.
Remember, the IAC is your organization. I invite you to get involved. Please feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or comments.
Jean Gran, IAC Treasurer, is a Financial Wellness Coach and Educator who helps individuals and couples earn more, spend less and create financially healthy lives from the inside out. Learn more on line at www.jeangran.com.
Opportunities to Contribute
What do you think of our website? Do you think it could be improved? Would you like to contribute your time and expertise to making this happen, and thereby help us promote the IAC's coach certification system?
If you're keen to help, please send an email to our website makeover leader, Kim Nishida, telling her how you would like to help and what enthusiasms and qualifications you have in website technology, graphic design, online marketing or copywriting.
Hong Kong IAC Members’ Intensive Practicum Retreat
by Lorraine Lee
The highly anticipated time had come. Nine coaches from the Hong Kong IAC Chapter spent a weekend on an intensive practicum retreat to pursue the certification challenge. We hired Coach Bonnie Chan (IAC-CC and IAC Hong Kong chapter leader) as our mentor coach to support us on this journey. She picked the venue: the Agile Changjiang Hotel Resort & Golf Course in Zhong Shan, located on the southern part of the Pearl River Delta in Guangdong Province, China, about a 90-minute ferry ride from Hong Kong. The facility was lovely. We felt like were on a holiday getaway. I think this helped set the scene and mood for our group to experience relaxation, fun and loads of learning ahead!
We met once before the retreat so we could get an idea of what would happen. And as the discussions evolved over the weekend, I sensed the positive energy of the group filled with openness for sharing, interactions and feedback.
Through this intensive mentor and group coaching practicum we enjoyed the beauty of the Masteries and the art of masterful coaching. We were also learning more about the IAC and the road to certification. We practiced—and practiced more—with each other as we took turns being coach, coachee and observer. For many of us, it was the first time making session recordings—quite mind-boggling for the technically-challenged. It took courage to listen to those recordings and to be critiqued openly in a group. But the debriefings as well as the individual consultation with Coach Bonnie made it all worth while. (Read more about planning your own coaching retreat here.)
This group process helped each of us to explore our coaching uniqueness. We shared our favourite coaching questions. We identified our intended target markets and specialized areas of coaching like women executives, leadership coaching, transitional coaching and spiritual coaching. On a deeper level, we shared learning experiences such as greater self discovery, the powers of appreciation and expansion of client’s potential—which are all keys to empowerment.
We all had a glimpse of what masterful coaching is about. It seems light yet deep, and shifts are achievable within a short time. The most effective coaching at this higher level seems effortless and powerful.
As the retreat drew to an end, we as a group were more inspired, more confident of our knowledge and what we are able to achieve. The goal of IAC certification seems closer and more reachable now. With support from each other and our mentor coach, we know that our coaching journey will continue with greater enthusiasm, passion and success!
Lorraine Lee is passionate about coaching and supporting people to be the best they can be in all areas of their life. She is a personal and professional development coach who works with a diverse range of managers and professionals. Lorraine is also a voluntary coach to undergraduate students transitioning into the workplace. Lorraine can be reached at email@example.com.
How to plan your own coaches’ retreat Tips from Coach Bonnie Chan, IAC-CC
Mentor Coach for the Hong Kong coaches’ gathering
Group coaching in few days' intensive retreat workshop—out of town and away from normal business—creates powerful energy and interactions that can naturally enhance learning ability. It seems to be a particularly accessible way for groups of non-English speaking coaches.
Use the online data base of IAC coaches to find members in your area who might get together for this kind of extensive program.
Find a mentor coach to guide the process or use the Masteries themselves to plan the activities for self-development and to grow in the coaching profession.
Treat the certification as an advanced learning process; the IAC-CC will come as the side effect for your focus and effort.
Plan for weekly follow-up meetings to get ready for Part 2.
choice, the magazine of professional coaching, congratulates IAC on celebrating five successful years. IAC Members are invited to download a FREE issue of choice Magazine in pdf format.
Visit IAC member services, sign up for the choice mailing list and obtain a link to download this issue of choice! You will also find an IAC member discount code for $4.00 off the regular subscription price.
Here at choice we too will celebrate our fifth anniversary this year. We take pride in forwarding the global conversation about professional coaching by providing:
and access to services, tools, resources and practical information.
Not an IAC Member? You can still sign up for the FREE issue of choice, join the choice community mailing list and receive benefits such as our Expert Series emails written by leaders in the coaching community. Get invitations to free multi-media Expert Series tele-calls with our authors and publisher, and receive our In-Between Newsletters. Sign up for the choice mailing list HERE.
Liability Insurance for Coaches
No matter how cautious your approach to coaching, no matter how careful you perform your job, the activities you are involved in on a daily basis can put your career and financial stability on the line. The IAC-endorsed professional liability insurance program, provided through Lockton Risk Services, Inc., is specifically designed to protect members from the ever increasing risks of malpractice lawsuits. For more information about this member benefit click here.
Set Yourself Up for Success with Part 2 of Your IAC Certification Coaches often ask, “What is the most important thing I need to know for IAC Certification?” Well, at the risk of sounding snide, the most obvious answer is that you need to know how to coach. More specifically, you need to demonstrate in the coaching sessions you submit the Coaching Masteries™ at a masterful level.
Not every coaching session is the same. In some sessions, your client will experience a huge shift, in others not so much. Some sessions, by the nature of the issue presented, will focus more on strategizing or problem solving. You may even find yourself in the role of consultant or teacher. All of these situations are normal in the course of a coaching relationship, but do not generally lend themselves to a masterful demonstration of the Masteries.
The distinction you want to be aware of is that for IAC Certification, we are looking for your masterful demonstration of the Coaching Masteries™. Just because your client makes a decision, or tells you they feel great or commits to a new course of action, it doesn’t automatically mean that the Masteries were demonstrated. Don’t manipulate the coaching session by trying to squeeze in all the Masteries. Instead, submit the session in which your use of the Masteries is natural and effective.
Here are Two helpful tidbits to set yourself up for success in Part 2 of IAC Certification.
Record all your coaching sessions. Get in the habit of recording all your coaching sessions—with your clients’ permission, of course. It is one of the best ways to reduce your performance anxiety which often shows up as forcing Masteries into the session, not listening fully to what the client is saying and jumping to solutions too quickly. Not only will this reduce your anxiety, it will reduce your client’s nervousness as well. Pretty soon the recording just becomes part of what happens in coaching, so isn’t an unusual, nerve-wracking experience.
One strategy is to make this part of your coaching service—clients get copies recordings of their coaching sessions. Not only will you have the chance to listen again to improve your coaching, your clients have the opportunity to deepen their awareness of the shifts they’ve made and what led to them. Plus, if your client ever wonders if the coaching is really going anywhere, they’ll have all those recordings as evidence.
Listen to your recordings before you submit them for certification! This is a professional certification. Submit your very best work for professional review. If you were taking the bar exam for your law degree, you wouldn’t just write the answers and turn in the paper without looking it over first, would you? No. If you were skydiving you wouldn’t just put your gear on, hope it’s all good and jump. Right?
Treat your recorded coaching sessions the same way. Listen to them and self-evaluate. Use the Masteries ebook and the Note Sheet. Check off the effective and ineffective behaviors. Identify which measures were met and which key elements occurred. Were the effects reached?
Not only will listening to your recordings before submitting help to ensure you are submitting your best work, it will also improve your coaching—nice little side effect.
And one quick bit about the quality of your recordings. The Certifiers often receive recordings of such poor sound quality that we are literally holding our computer speakers up to our ears. And, believe me, we have good speakers. Please respect the process and submit good sound quality recordings. Help the Certifiers have an easy job listening. This isn’t just to make it easier on the Certifiers, it’s to make it easier for them to hear all the things you are doing well!
Nina East is the IAC’s Lead Certifier and the author of PersonalGrowthEnthusiasts.com. As a coach she works with personal growth professionals, helps coaches master the art of coaching and coaches students and their families through the complex and emotional transition into college. Find her on the web at www.NinaEast.com.
"Coaching Moments" takes a thoughtful look at how coaching can be interwoven into our daily lives.
transcendental trolleys by Janice Hunter
Success leaves clues. ~ Anthony Robbins
I’ve often said that coaching moments creep up on me in the weirdest of places. Last week I had a transcendental moment with some supermarket trolleys…
I’d slept badly and lumbered the two steps from our front door to the car like a bear just out of hibernation. While my husband drove us to his work, I daydreamed and dozily chatted about news items on the radio.
When we arrived, I got out of the passenger side to swap over and drive to the supermarket. Wham! The wind slammed me in the face! As I stood there looking like Medusa and grabbing onto my scarf, my husband, completely unfazed, said “Wild, isn’t it.” He kissed me, smiled and headed into the building.
I scrambled to the driver’s side, got in, slammed the door shut and took a few deep breaths. He’d made driving through a gale look so effortless!
The problem is, I’m not a confident driver and don’t drive on very windy days if I can avoid it. I’m not actually a ‘bad’ driver – just a wimp with a weather-related comfort zone. But there I was, faced with a choice; get on with the shopping and drive home, or sit there all day outside my husband’s place of work.
I made it safely to the supermarket, this time noticing the swaying trees and the cars being buffeted as they overtook lorries.
Later as I sat in the café, warming my hands around a chunky white coffee cup, I sat musing about mastery and unconscious competence.
My husband can reverse park in a space that looks too small to get through with post-Christmas hips and two bags of shopping. He can cook ten-item breakfasts without breaking sweat or swearing at the kids. He gets strikes every time we go bowling and can pot six or seven balls one after the other in a game of pool. All of it effortless, but here’s the thing… it’s probably never occurred to him that any of those skills constitute mastery. He takes them so much for granted!
When I was going for certification, I used to be intimidated by graceful, elegant coaches who made everything seem so effortless. I fought off envy until I learned how to analyse what I admired, what they did and what I could adapt and absorb. I worked very hard, learned how to learn, made a load of silly mistakes and eventually passed the IAC exam. The most important thing I learned from my certification journey is that success leaves clues.
As I was leaving the supermarket, muttering under my breath at my talent for picking trolleys with wayward wheels, I heard an announcement. “Due to the weather conditions, could customers please return their empty trolleys to the trolley bays.” I looked out onto the car park and surveyed a surreal scene; unaccompanied trolleys whizzing and clanging into cars, a tiny bouquet of cellophane-wrapped tulips buffeting and skidding along the road trying to take off, newspapers flying around like kites, and people batting off litter and flying brochures with their flailing hands like a scene from Hitchcock’s ‘The Birds’.
I saw people struggling with overloaded trolleys, trying to swing them around like rollerblading partners, outstretched arms in a spin. Others lurched for small light items snatched by the wind and watched in alarm as their liberated trolleys trundled off to freedom.
As I walked alongside my wobbly trolley, gently but firmly using my weight to keep it on track as it tried to veer to the right, I suddenly realised that this is what coaches do when faced with clients’ ingrained paradigms, self limiting beliefs and stormy days. We walk alongside them, gently but firmly keeping them on the road they’d rather be on, helping them navigate obstacles along the way and sometimes relieving them of a burden so heavy it’s been paralysing them into inactivity.
We know the difference between directionless emptiness and a load that’s too overwhelming to manoeuvre. We know when it’s time to apply the brakes and when to keep on going and take advantage of momentum. We know how to focus to get through fear.
I may not be the world’s most confident driver, but I’m good at getting the shopping home. (And don’t worry…I don’t actually talk to trolleys!)
What unconscious competence do you take for granted, not just in your coaching but in your whole life?
Janice Hunter is a writer, teacher and IAC certified coach who currently specialises in homelife coaching – helping people create authentic, spirit filled lives and homes they love – and in supporting coaches on their certification journeys. She lives in Scotland with her husband and two children.
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