LEXINGTON, Ky., May 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Gender and age may both play a larger-than-expected role in a consumer's decision to enlist the services of a professional coach, according to new research released by the International Coach Federation (ICF).
Commissioned by the ICF and conducted by the International Survey Unit of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, the 2014 ICF Global Consumer Awareness Study tapped directly into the minds and motivations of consumers around the globe to ascertain awareness of the coaching profession and of ICF, and to gain insight both from those who are aware of coaching profession and/or the ICF and those who are not. Available in 16 languages, the survey forming the basis of the study was administered to 18,810 individuals representing the 25 countries with the highest populations of ICF Members. Seventeen countries included in the 2014 study were also part of ICF's benchmarking 2010 research.
"Professional coaches around the world will find this information to be extremely insightful. By giving them current information about the factors that actually drive consumer decision-making, coaches now will be in a position to adapt their marketing approaches to appeal to more diverse audience segments," said ICF Director of Research and Education Mark Ruth.
Researchers were able to glean a variety of insights from respondents who indicated that they had received coaching. They discovered that although men were slightly more likely than women to participate in a coaching relationship, nearly half of women who had not been coached but were aware of the profession would consider coaching as a way to meet their personal and professional goals.
Among all respondents who had participated in a coach relationship, the No. 1 reason cited for seeking coaching was to optimize individual/team work performance (42 percent), followed by expanding career opportunities (33 percent), increasing self-esteem/self-confidence (31 percent), improving business management strategies (29 percent) and managing work/life balance (27 percent). Men were more likely than women to receive coaching to expand professional opportunities, while women were more likely than men to seek coaching in service of improving work/life balance.
When surveyed about professional coaches' credentials and certifications, 83 percent of respondents who'd participated in a coaching relationship said they thought it was "somewhat" or "very" important for coaches to hold a credential. However, awareness of a coach's credential status varied by demographic: Consumers between ages 25 and 34 were more likely than their older counterparts to state with certainty that their coach held some form of credential or certification. Meanwhile, regardless of age, more than half of female coaching consumers said they recognized the credentials held by their coaches.
The ICF has compiled additional findings from the 2014 Global Consumer Awareness Study about coaching consumers in an infographic titled "An Inside Look at Coaching Consumers."
Further information about the 2014 Global Consumer Awareness Study, including data tables and a link to purchase the executive summary, can be found at Coachfederation.org/consumerstudy2014. (The executive summary is free to ICF Global Members and $15 USD for non-members.)
On May 21 at 1 p.m. (New York), Ruth will join PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP's Global Research Director, Colin McIlheney, to present key findings from this study during a Human Capital Institute webcast, "Consumers and Coaching: New Findings from ICF Industry Research."
The International Coach Federation is the leading global organization for coaches, with more than 25,000 members and 12,000 credentialed coaches in more than 100 countries worldwide. ICF is dedicated to advancing the coaching profession by setting high ethical standards, providing independent certification and building a worldwide network of credentialed coaches. Coaching is a distinct service and differs greatly from therapy, consulting, mentoring or training. ICF defines coaching as partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential. For more information, please visit our website at www.coachfederation.org.
ICF HEADQUARTERS CONTACT:
Abby Tripp Heverin, +1.859.219.3529
SOURCE International Coach Federation