From the Editor
I have always loved spending time by the water. Whether it be a seaside beach, my family’s cabin on a lake in the Adirondacks, or a quiet stream in the woods, I am overcome with a sense of calm and peace. You can only imagine how grateful I was to spend last weekend strolling along the Hudson River for a two-day music festival. It was a great way to usher in the summertime in my part of the world!
I hope that you all have your environments (like my waterside locations) that help you find necessary piece of mind. Many of the sentiments our authors bring up this week are about understanding yourself so you can best support your clients, and how to approach the coaching Masteries with a unique attitude best suited for you.
We also have a new bi-monthly column to share with you called “Meet the Coach”, arranged by IAC Director of Development Ed Britton, that will highlight select certified coaches at the IAC. Enjoy the opportunity to get to know the coaches in your world!
Is there something you’d like to see in the VOICE? A particular subject you’d like us to address? Please don’t hesitate to contact us at email@example.com with comments, questions, event notices, or article contributions. We are always looking for new perspectives and look forward to hearing from you.
Beth Ann Miller is currently pursuing an MFA in Writing and is a native New Englander. She has a professional background in editing and higher education, and enjoys working with youths in the arts. Her stories have appeared in online and print journals and she is perpetually at work on new creative projects.
From the President – Vicki Zanini
How to be More Than a “Warm Bath” Coach – Anne Mulliner
A Look at Distinctions – Natalie Tucker Miller
Meet the Coach – Kathi Crawford
Inside the IAC Licensing Committee – Charlie Boyer
Open Chat Calls
From the President
This month as I adjust to life as an “empty nester”, I’ve been reflecting on the impact coaching has had on my relationship with my children. Our son was 2 years old and I was seven months pregnant with our daughter when my husband and I attended our first personal development workshop in 1991. Both my children were pre-teens when I enrolled in Coachville’s Graduate School of Coaching in 2001.
I immersed myself in a culture of coaching just as I was beginning my journey as a new mom, and it had a profound impact on my life. I believe most coaches have similar stories of how coaching provided a framework for their own inner journey. This month I took a few minutes to look at my relationships through the language of the IAC Masteries, which turned out to be a powerful assignment. I invite you to join me and review the IAC Masteries below while thinking of one significant relationship in your life. Sit quietly with each one for a few moments and note any thoughts, feelings or sensations that bubble up:
What I immediately noticed was how intuitive the IAC Masteries are. Although I did not have access to this particular language 20 years ago, the values I stood for in my relationships are reflected in the IAC Masteries: Trust, acceptance, presence and love. What did you notice in your relationships?
I believe coaching is a transformational process that improves communication and impacts relationships both personally and professionally. My intention as a parent has always been to create a safe environment for self-discovery, authentic expression and unconditional love for every member of our family, and the IAC Masteries support this beautifully! My husband and I have relished every moment as parents, and will continue to do so, and we are prepared for the rest of the journey.
Vicki Zanini is founder of Vicki Zanini Coaching & Training. As a certified holistic life coach, she works with individuals and groups who are ready to create new possibilities, boost personal effectiveness, and experience a deeper sense of meaning and inner peace. She has been leading coaching groups and workshops for over 15 years in personal development, self-care, creativity, and intuition. Visit her website at www.vickizanini.com.
It’s more than 20 years since I started using the term “coach” to define what I did to colleagues, peers and superiors at my various employers. Like many people who enter the profession, I wanted to help everyone I came into contact with and I felt responsible if they didn’t get great results following our conversations. If I am honest, in my early days I was probably just a “warm bath” coach – meaning my clients had a nice experience, but it was transactional safe questions I asked, rather than transformational challenging questions they needed to be asked.
I also had a lot going on for myself and I used coaching clients as a distraction for my own problems. I found myself attracting clients who were experiencing similar challenges to my own, so their agenda and my agenda at times got blurred and I spent too long trying to understand their story, believing I needed this to help them.
Experience and being coached myself by some amazing coaches, has taught me a completely different approach and led to my clients voting me Executive Coach of the Year in 2011. Here are my favorite 6 tips to help you become more than a “warm bath” coach.
1. Sort out your own stuff first. As a coach you have to be totally present for your client, so you need to make sure that you are able to clear your mind of the things going on in your own life and be able to focus 100% on your client.
2. Have your own coach! I am amazed at how many coaches I meet at conferences or training events that tell me they don’t work with a coach themselves. We all need a coach in our lives: someone who is interested in helping us stretch ourselves but who won’t confuse their agenda with ours, like our friends do when they give us advice. Working with different coaches allows you to experience different techniques and learn as well.
3. You don’t need to understand their story. Most coaches at some time will come across the GROW (Goal, Reality, Options, Will) model and will spend far too long on Reality, simply because they believe they need to understand that, so they can come up with the right questions to ask to get the client to come up with Options. Instead, you have to trust yourself as a coach that you will know the right questions to ask. Some of my best coaching is done when I have no idea what I’m coaching the client on. I ask the questions that come into my head and see where the client goes.
4. It is not your job to fix your client! Sad but true: there will be clients you meet who may choose not to take action even after working with you. Experienced coaches learn to recognise clients who will resist change and may opt to not take them on. Over the last 15 years I turned down two perspective clients because I didn’t believe they were serious about taking the level of action they needed to improve their circumstances.
5. Trust yourself! Sometimes I act as supervisor for coaches who are just starting out and many of them ask for a list of my best questions and I always disappoint them. Yes, I do have a few questions I use that will get results, but I trust myself enough to know I will ask great questions based on the particular client I’m working with. It is impossible to ask a bad question!
6. Shine Bright. I have won work because people have observed me first without knowing what I did and then when they found out, decided they wanted to work with me just because they had formed an opinion about my identity based on how I behaved. So, no matter where you are or what you are doing, shine brightly because you never know who is waiting to come and work with you.
Anne Mulliner is the author of “Empowered! – How to change your life in your coffee break” and is an award-winning executive coach and leadership development expert, who works with clients all over the world, sharing her passion for getting them to access their full potential and live life at 10 out of 10. For more information visit http://www.jdicreativesolutions.co.uk/.
Coaches have shared with me how daunting it can be to feel like they have to demonstrate all the components of masterful coaching in one session, but each coach will find that path to mastery through practicing, studying, and coaching. Even coaches who are considered “masterful” continue on this journey, always finding new pathways to excellence, greater understanding, and efficacy. I’d like to share one of the ways I like to play with the IAC Coaching Masteries:
Put your focus on just one segment of the Masteries’ components. For instance, the distinctions.
Here’s a look at one of the distinctions for Mastery 1 (Establishing and Maintaining a Relationship of Trust): Confidence vs. Overbearing. There are some great insights to be gleaned from this simple element, and many questions and observations that a coach can consider when on a quest to deeper understanding. You might find yourself asking things such as:
Letting questions like these emerge will provide some opportunities for great discussion with your study groups, your triads, even with your clients! After all, a sample effective behavior for Mastery 1 is “Observes where trust is absent or blocked, and discusses openly”. Masterful coaching includes the ability to fully disclose, and for trust to be authentic, that includes you!
If you’re not yet feeling comfortable with full disclosure, that’s ok, too. The answers to how you can grow to be within that framework are also found within the Masteries. Besides, you might just find another distinction. Being vs. Readiness.
What are some of your favorite Masteries’ distinctions? Leave a comment and start the discussion!
Do you have a question that you’d like to ask the certifiers? Submit your questions here: http://certifiedcoachblog.typepad.com/blog/ask-the-certifiers.html.
Natalie Tucker Miller, MMC, is the Lead Certifier and a certifying examiner at the IAC, as well as Past-President. Natalie is founder of Ageless-Sages.com Publishing (www.ageless-sages.com), and creator of the literary genre, Picture Books for Elders™.
Please send your questions on the IAC Coaching Masteries® and the certification process to firstname.lastname@example.org.
My journey to coaching began in 2006 at the height of my career as a Human Resources leader. I realized at that point in my life I had achieved the pinnacle of my career in human resources, yet deeply missed working one-on-one with people and making a difference in their lives. I started to explore the field of coaching and hired a coach, Mattison Grey, MMC (IAC), to work with me. Mattison inspired me to pursue my interest in coaching and learn the skill sets for success. This included pursuing my coach certification with the IAC. I joined the IAC in 2007 and completed the certification in 2009.
In 2008, People Possibilities was born. The name of my company speaks to my belief that there are endless possibilities to pursue in our business and work life. And pursue we do! It’s human nature to want to grow, expand and feel a sense of accomplishment. Whether we realize it or not, our path is about progress. We want to be more!
If we are stagnant or slip backwards, it’s usually because we lack clarity. When we don’t know what to do, we will do nothing. This is the exact opposite of our human nature and potential. Each day we make choices that direct our path. And if the path we choose at first seems impossible — or a change in direction is needed — seeking clarity and making choices to alter our path, in its own right, makes it possible.
I am delighted to work with my clients to assist them in clarifying what changes to make to reach their full potential. My approach is to inspire, challenge and support them as they build leadership capability, identify career development opportunities and transform their careers. It is a joy to see the spark in their eyes when they realize that they have options and choices they can make that move them in a direction that they feel is right and true to what motivates them.
A tool that I have found crucial to the work I do is The Birkman Method™ assessment (www.birkman.com). I am a Senior Birkman™ Consultant and use the assessment for career coaching, leadership development, team building and aligning roles and relationships for maximum productivity and success. It uniquely addresses all of these situations because it integrates behavioral, motivational and occupational data together to predict behavior and work satisfaction. We use it as a guide and common language as we explore those options and choices for moving forward.
In addition to my coaching practice, I have continued my human resources career, exclusively focusing on providing services to small to mid-sized companies. I work directly with the business owner, organizational leader, entrepreneur, and game changer. They recognize that an investment in themselves and those around them yields immediate and ongoing results, creating a supportive and success-oriented culture.
If you want to know more about me and what I do, visit my website at www.peoplepossibilities.com. You can read my blog posts at http://peoplepossibilities.com/blog/. And we can stay in touch via LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/kathicrawford/.
The Licensing Committee is pleased to report that four applications for licensure were approved last month. The names of the new licensees will be published in a following section of this newsletter.
We have noted with some concern that several licensed coaching schools appear to be advertising to clients that the IAC has endorsed their training programs. The Licensing Committee wishes to clarify that the granting of a license authorizes the use of the Coaching Masteries, but does not mean that the IAC has endorsed the program. Likewise, students who complete training from an IAC licensed school are not automatically certified as IAC coaches. Licensure and certification are two separate and very different processes.
As we continue to process applications for licensure, we must remind ourselves again of the requirement that, beginning in January 2015, all new and renewal applications must have at least one person certified at the Masteries Practitioner level, which includes submitting a Learning Agreement.
Committee members Pepe del Rio, Deb Chisholm, and Charlie Boyer welcome your suggestions and comments. Contact the Licensure Committee at email@example.com.
Join the IAC Open Chat in May to share your thoughts, ask your questions and get to know more about the IAC. This month, we’ll be talking about how Living the Masteries™ can be part of your Learning Agreement, expanding what you already know by way of awareness and clarity.
This call is open to everyone and anyone interested in expanding the path to coaching mastery.
Date: July 8th, 2014
Congratutlations to Catherine Claudepierre from Singapore who recently earned the Certified Masteries Coach designation!
We’d love to get your feedback on any issue related to the IAC. Do you have any questions, concerns, encouragement or ideas for improvement regarding membership benefits, certification, the VOICE, the direction of the organization or anything else at all? Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please help us improve.