The coaching field in the USA represents about US$1.5 billion annual industry and it generates revenue of US$750 million (Brennan, 2008). The coaching profession emerged in the USA in the early 1990s and the three top coaching niches are Life Coaching 18%, Leadership Coaching 17% and Executive Coaching 16% (Brennan, 2008). Coaches who are entering in this industry have different backgrounds such as management, health care, business, education, organizational development, and human resources. However, one challenge in the coaching industry is education and training of the coaches (Brennan 2008; International Coaching Federation, 2012) since this profession continues to be an unregulated field (Feldman & Lankau, 2005). Thus, Joo et al., (2012) claimed that there is a strong need for the creation of coaching frameworks and the development of valid and reliable coaching instruments to measure the effectiveness of coaching.
The purpose of this coaching study is to create a coaching framework and a valid and a reliable coaching instrument to measure the coaching behaviors of effective coaches using the Exemplary Coach Framework and the Coaching Practice Inventory (CPI). This study found ten effective coaching behaviors of exemplary coaches based on the ICF competencies and the theories in coaching, leadership and management. For instance, the coaching practice of fostering collaboration (FC) received the highest score while the coaching practice of endowing compassion (EC) obtained the lowest score. In addition, this study found three merging coaching themes needed in the future for effective coaching 1) exquisite listening skills; 2) asking powerful questions; and 3) remaining non-judgmental. Three implications for the practice of coaching is discussed 1) advancing the coaching practice; 2) coaching training and development; and 3) peer mentoring program.
This study is divided into four sections. The first section presents the methodology of this study. The second section presents and addresses the three research questions of this study. The third section examines the implications for the practice of coaching. This study ends with a conclusion and recommendations for future research. The next section discusses the methodology of this study.
This study focuses on the creation of a quantitative instrument to measure the behaviors of effective coaches. The information to develop the Coaching Practice Inventory (CPI) was found in coaching, leadership and management theories on interpersonal skills, communication, self-awareness, facilitation, compassion probing, adult learning and the International Coaching Federation (ICF) competencies and standard of behaviors. Peer reviewed articles and scholarly journals were used from several online databases such as ABI/Inform Global, Academic Search Premier, SAGE Journal Online and PsyArticles. For instance, the theories on this study were found by using the following key words: effective coaching, exemplary coaching, leader as coach, coaching and compassion, emotional intelligence and coaching. An online survey was created and used to gather the data of the study.
The service of FluidSurveys was used to create an online survey and to gather data for this study. The population of this coaching study entailed coaches with different years of experience and niches from Facebook coaching groups. For instance, the exemplary coach questionnaire was posted on Connecting Life Coaches ICA, International Coach Academy, Coaches Gone Wild, ICA Newbies 2011 and the International Coach Federation within different Chapters. However, one limitation of this study was the low rate of response on the questionnaire. As a result, 20 coaches answered this survey. In the following paragraphs, three research questions are presented and discussed.
- Research Question 1: Based on the ICF competencies and the literature review about coaching, what are the most effective coaching practices?
- Research Question 2: What coaching practice did receive the highest and the lowest score?
- Research Question 3: What are the three most important coaching practices needed in the future?
Research Question 1
Based on the ICF competencies and the literature review about coaching, what are the most effective practices of coaching?
The Exemplary Coach Framework
Ten practices of effective coaching were identified in the literature review on coaching and the International Coaching Federation (ICF) competencies. In addition, leadership and management competencies were aligned to the coaching practice since these skills can be transferred into the field of coaching. The ten practices of effective coaching entail exemplary coaching behaviors needed to successfully perform the coaching process and obtain the best results from the clients. The ten practices of effective coaching are: 1) communicating the message (CM); 2) endowing compassion (EC); 3) elevating self-awareness (ESA); 4) managing the contract (MC); 5) facilitating the process (FP); 6) upbringing new knowledge (UNK); 7) building rapport (BR); 8) probing the agenda of the client (PAC); 9) fostering collaboration (FC); and 10) modeling Authenticity (MA). The definition of every effective coaching practice and its exemplary behaviors are discussed in the next paragraphs.