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As a member of the professional coaching community and the International Coach Federation (ICF) and as president of the Long Island Coaching Alliance--an ICF chapter, it's important to me to participate in and support global coaching events. This week is the grandaddy of such events -- International Coaching Week.

What is International Coaching Week?

During International Coaching Week, coaches all around the world (including members of the Long Island Coaching Alliance) celebrate by educating the public on the benefits of the coaching process and illustrating the value coaching can bring to peoples’ lives. Throughout the week, coaches and their clients will acknowledge the results made through the coaching process and share their progress with others interested in learning more about coaching.

What's Going On?

Personal and business coaches in the Long Island area will be hosting several events throughout the week. If you would like to attend these local events of Coaching Week or would like more information on the Long Island Coaching Alliance, please contact Lisa-Michelle Kucharz at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

What is a Coach?

Professional coaches (not to be confused with sports coaches) partner with clients to facilitate personal transformation through ongoing thought-provoking coaching conversations. ICF-Credentialed coaches use a variety of tools and techniques to release creativity and inspire clients to meet their personal and professional goals.

Why Use a Coach?

Coaches work with clients in areas including career, transition, life/personal, corporate executive, small business and organizational/workplace. As a result of coaching, clients may set better goals, take more action, make better decisions, and more fully use their natural strengths.

What are the Benefits of Hiring a Coach?

Individuals who engage in a coaching relationship can expect to experience fresh perspectives on personal challenges and opportunities, enhance thinking and decision making skills, improve interpersonal effectiveness and increase confidence in carrying out their chosen work and life roles. Consistent with a commitment to enhancing their personal effectiveness, they can also expect to see appreciable results in the areas of productivity, personal satisfaction with life and work, and the achievement of personally relevant goals. Many businesses have increasingly turned to coaching to help meet the variety of challenges that face today’s managers and executives. Coaches assist individuals within an organization, as well as entire organizations, to achieve increased performance, improve retention and morale, and develop greater employee commitment through helping individual employees find greater satisfaction in their roles.

How to Choose Your Coach

The most important thing to look for in choosing a coach is someone with whom you feel you can easily relate and create a powerful partnership. Here are some questions you may want to ask prospective coaches:

• What is your coaching experience?
• What is your coach-specific training?
• Do you hold an ICF credential? (The International Coach Federation recommends consumers work with ICF-credentialed coaches; see below.)
• What is your coaching specialty or areas in which you most often work?
• What specialized skill or experience do you bring to your coaching?
• What is your philosophy about coaching?
• What is your specific process for coaching?
• What are some coaching success stories?

Who is the ICF?

ICF is the globally recognized professional association of personal and business coaches that seeks to preserve the integrity of professional coaching around the world. ICF has more than 16,000 members in over 90 countries and is responsible for establishing the first independent credentialing program for coaches, which is now recognized worldwide.

What is an ICF-Credentialed Coach?

A coach who has been credentialed by the International Coach Federation has completed stringent education and experience requirements and has demonstrated a strong commitment to excellence in coaching. Coaches who have been credentialed by the ICF have received coach-specific training, achieved a designated number of experience hours, and been coached by a mentor coach.

Why Choose an ICF-Credentialed Coach?

The International Coach Federation's rapid expansion indicates worldwide recognition of the value of ICF-credentialed coaches. Why choose a coach and have to wonder about their qualifications? When you choose an ICF-credentialed coach, you can enter the coaching relationship with peace of mind. To find more information on the International Coach Federation or to search for an ICF-credentialed coach, visit http://www.coachfederation.org/.