LEXINGTON, Ky., May 5 /PRNewswire/ -- If you have seen professional coaches portrayed on TV or spotlighted in magazines, you may not always come away with an accurate perception of coaching. Like with any young profession that has experienced rapid growth, misconceptions have surfaced about the nature and purpose of professional coaching. As part of its work to advance the art, science, and practice of professional coaching, the International Coach Federation (ICF) works to educate the public on what to expect from a coaching partnership. Because many countries do not call for licensure or regulation of coaches, anyone may call him or herself a "coach" without receiving formal coach-specific training. When these untrained individuals transfer skill sets from other professions into their coaching, an inadequate or ineffective coaching experience for clients often results. This may cause further confusion about coaching in general. "Unfortunately, there are misconceptions about the definition and purpose of coaching," said ICF President Diane Brennan, MBA, MCC. "It is the duty of the ICF and its members to correct these inaccuracies by educating the public about our distinct profession and stressing the importance of working with a coach who has undergone formal coach-specific training and is credentialed. ICF Credentialed coaches have completed stringent education and experience requirements and have proven that they have a clear understanding of the skills and approaches used within today's coaching profession." Common misconceptions about coaching: -- Consumers have no protection when selecting a coach. The ICF offers the only globally recognized credentialing program. ICF Credentials protect the public by identifying coaches who have met established standards of knowledge, skills and practice. Today, over 3,700 coaches hold an ICF Credential. Additionally, all ICF members subscribe to a code of ethics and are subject to an ethical conduct review process. -- A coach is like a therapist. Professional coaching is a distinct service which focuses on an individual's life as it relates to goal-setting, outcome creation and personal change management. Unlike a therapist, a coach does not focus directly on relieving psychological pain or treating cognitive or emotional disorders. -- Coaching and consulting are the same. Coaches are experts in the coaching process and are trained to listen, observe and customize their approach to individual client needs. Whereas, consultants typically give clients answers or solutions based on expertise or knowledge in a certain area, coaches seek to elicit solutions and strategies from the client; they believe the client is naturally creative and resourceful. -- A coach is like a friend who gets paid to listen. A coach is a neutral listener who offers an objective perspective unlike an opinionated friend or family member. While friendship may last a lifetime, the length of a coaching partnership depends on the client's needs and preferences. ICF defines coaching as partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential. Individuals who engage in a coaching relationship can expect to experience fresh perspectives on personal challenges and opportunities, enhanced thinking and decision-making skills, enhanced interpersonal effectiveness, and increased confidence in carrying out their chosen work and life roles. The ICF is the leading global organization for coaches, with over 15,000 members in almost 90 countries, dedicated to advancing the coaching profession by setting high ethical standards, providing independent certification, and building a worldwide network of credentialed coaches. For more information, please visit our Web site at http://www.coachfederation.org.  MCC: Master Certified Coach, highest credential awarded by the International Coach Federation.
ICF HEADQUARTERS CONTACT: Ann Belcher, +1.859.226.4428, email@example.com This release was issued through eReleases(TM). For more information, visit http://www.ereleases.com.
SOURCE International Coach Federation