The IAC: A Great Organization

by Bob Tschannen-Moran, IAC-CC, Immediate Past President

Two years ago this month, I started my tenure as President by identifying five priority areas. Now, as I pass the torch to Susan and step into the role of Past President, I thought I would look again at those priorities in order to reflect on where we’ve come and where we have yet to grow.

  1. Significant and Rapid Membership Growth. My stated goal was to double the membership of the IAC in 2010 and again in 2011. Unfortunately, that did not happen. The membership of the IAC stayed more or less constant. That was in spite of numerous initiatives over the past two years to make the IAC more visible and credible in the coaching world. By the end of my tenure, the IAC BOG was addressing this priority by changing the framework for coach certification. Unless large numbers of people can get certified as coaches through the IAC, large numbers of people will never join the IAC. That changing framework has now been approved by the IAC BOG and will be rolled out during the first quarter of 2012. Watch for news of these exciting developments right here in the VOICE! Many thanks to Susan R. Meyer, Natalie Tucker Miller, and Kristi Arndt for their leadership in this area, along with a majority of IAC BOG members who worked with them through several months of special meetings.
    Although membership growth was less than planned, that was not through a lack of trying! Ed Britton, the IAC Capacity Building Specialist, has been working closely with members of the IAC BOG, especially with Tatiana Abend, the head of the Membership committee, and Kate Larsen, the head of the Chapter committee, to conceptualize and launch a variety of new initiatives. IAC Chapter growth has been steady and, at times, dramatic. Every month, the IAC is contacted with one or more new opportunities in far-flung places around the globe, particularly in East Asia, but increasingly in many other locations. This enthusiasm for the IAC bodes well for our future. Member Benefits have also expanded considerably over the past two years, under the able leadership of IAC BOG member Kerul Kassel. As Benefits, Chapters, and Certification take off, so will the IAC membership-growth curve.
  2. Enhanced Certification and Licensing Programs. Two years ago I recognized the importance of entry-level designations to membership growth and affirmed the importance of making the IAC’s certification and licensing programs even more vital and accountable. Those two priorities are not incompatible. In fact, the IAC cannot, with integrity, do one without the other. Fortunately, the integrity of the IAC certification and licensing programs was enhanced dramatically over the past two years with the institution of the IAC Learning Agreement process. In lieu of traditional Continuing Education Units, or CEUs, each IAC Practitioner and Certified Coach is now required to submit an annual Learning Agreement, specifying how we intend to continue our growth and development as professional coaches. Susan, Natalie and Kristi deserve a lot of recognition and gratitude here as well.
    IAC Licensees are now also required to have IAC Certified Coaches involved with their training and mentoring programs, and to participate in the Learning Agreement process. They may also choose to enhance their work with the IAC Coaching Masteries™ by attending quarterly support calls. The Licensing committee, headed up by IAC BOG member Uta Guse, along with Past-President Angela Spaxman, should be recognized for revamping the structure of the licensing program, which Natalie Tucker Miller and the Certification Board are now administering. Woo-hoo for that!
  3. Dramatically-Improved Web Presence. By the beginning of my tenure, the IAC BOG had already selected a media design company, Ripe Media, to completely redesign the IAC website, optimizing its usability and visibility. That is now done. One predicted result was that the site would rise to the top of search engine inquiries, and that has happened. Type "professional coaching organizations" into Google, without the quotes, and the IAC appears near the top of the list out of almost 3 million results. Another predicted result was increased links and usage of social networking outlets, such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. That too has happened. Much of the credit goes to IAC BOG member Kerryn Griffiths, Lael Johnson and VOICE editor Linda Dessau. Many thanks to each of you!
  4. Greater Collaboration and Diversification. In January of 2010, the IAC was fresh off the heels of two collaborations with the International Coach Federation: several IAC BOG members led a workshop at the 14th annual ICF Conference in Orlando, Florida while the IAC and ICF jointly issued a set of model standards of conduct for professional coaches. I envisioned continuing such collaborations with other coaching organizations during my tenure as President, and that has happened through Conference participation, Chapter development, and behind-the-scenes conversations regarding the future of coach certification. The latter has been a significant focus during my role as President, and it has been wonderful to share continued conversations with organizations as disparate as the ICF and the Center for Credentialing and Education.
  5. Increased Social Responsibility. Throughout my tenure as President, I have tried to make sure that the IAC never lost sight of its reason for being. Coaching is not an end in itself and the purpose of the IAC is not just to recognize and elevate coaching as a profession. The purpose of the IAC is to represent and advance in the larger world the following "coaching values": innovation and change, diversity, mastery, openness and transparency, abundance thinking, as well as integrity and high ethical standards. These values were identified in the IAC Strategic Plan at the outset of my tenure as President, and they continue to guide the work of the IAC today. That is why IAC membership is open to all, including coaching clients and the general public. Anyone who supports those values and who wants to see them embodied more fully in the world is not only welcome in the IAC, but strongly encouraged. Margaret Mead could well have been speaking about the IAC when she issued her famous line: "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."

In conclusion, I end my tenure as President with a deep sense of appreciation for those I have worked with and those who will carry on the work in the years ahead. The IAC is a brilliant organization which deserves your participation and support. If you have not already done so, join or renew your IAC membership, complete an IAC Learning Agreement, subscribe to the IAC VOICE, read the IAC blog and follow the IAC social media outlets such as Twitter and the IAC LinkedIn and Facebook groups. Catch the buzz and see where it leads.

May you be filled with goodness, peace and joy,

Bob Tschannen-Moran, IAC-CC, is CEO and Co-Founder of the Center for School Transformation and President of LifeTrek Coaching International. Bob is the co-author of Evocative Coaching, which incorporates the IAC Coaching Masteries® in a coaching model designed for leaders and coaches in schools.

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