Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Words to live by…

Taking a cue from ICF guest blogger Laurie Lawson, we asked our Facebook fans the following question in September: “coaches, what is your favorite quote?”

The response was tremendous! If you are a collector of quotes, the below pool will serve as an excellent source.

“As long as you are going to be thinking anyway, think big.”—Donald Trump (Sinead Moffatt)

“Do, or do not. There is no try.”—Yoda (Vickie Gray)

“If you love what you do you will be successful.”—Albert Schweitzer (Jurgen Domacassee)

“I care not what the others do, but I care very much about what I think I do!”—Theodore Roosevelt (Elina Giachali)

“You can have anything you want if you want it desperately enough. You must want it with an exhuberance that erupts through the skin and joins the energy that created the world.”—Sheila Graham (Christa Lynn Colletti)

“Be where you are right now.” (Demyan Rossouw)

“Don’t ask yourself what the words needs. Ask what makes you come alive…and then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” (Robben Salyers)

“Whether you think you can, and if you think that you can’t, are correct.”—Henry Ford (Germán Portilla Vallejo)

“No individual has any right to come into the world and go out of it without leaving behind him distinct and legitimate reasons for having passed through it.”—George Washington Carver (Jeremy Flagg)

“The point is to understand, not judge.” (Cynthia Grinfield)

“Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.”—Jung (Mine Kobal Ok)

“If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.”—Lao Tzu (Susanne Cordes-Hoelterhoff)

“Screw it, let’s do it!”—Richard Branson (Katerina Kanelidou)

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”—Albert Einstein (Gildardo Aguilar)

“Sometimes you have to lose your mind to come to your senses.” (Christel Seierø)

“Forget the failures. Keep the lessons.”—Dalaï Lama (Zohra Dali)

“A maior conquista do homem, é vencer a si mesmo.”—Platão (Joana Darc A. Silva)

“In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.”—Robert Frost (Karim Fayad)

“What you reap today is a result of what you sow yesterday. So what are you sowing today for tomorrow?” (Simon Yap)

“When you really want something, the whole universe conspires helping you achieve it.”—Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist (Christine Haugseth Andersen)

“Coaching begins with trusting that the coachee is ‘capable’.” (Bhaskar Bhattacharya)

“Live to make your lifetime a statement of who you are—not what you feared.” (Marcus Milukas)

“Spontaneity must be well planned!” (Wolfgang Spenke)

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”—Mary Oliver (Merle Rockwell)

“If you can dream it, you can do it!”—Walt Disney (Elisabeth Piene Espenes)

“Nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care.” (Deborah Higgs)

“My fellow citizens of the world, ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of Man.”—John F. Kennedy (Mattia Rossi)

“Aerodynamically, the bumblebee shouldn’t be able to fly. But the bumblebee doesn’t know what, so it goes on flying anyway.”—Mary Kay Ash (Caroline Charron Stolzy)

“No regrets.”—S. Waugh (Wayne Timms)

“It is never too late to be what you should have become.”—George Eliot (Pierina Curties)

“Get the best people and train them well.”—Scott McNealy (Paul Morrall)

“A man who wants to lead the orchestra must turn his back on the crowd.”—Max Lucado (Paul Morrall)

“Leaders grasp nettles.”—David Oglivy (Paul Morrall)

“Use your life to change the world.”—Oprah Winfrey (Elvira Hopper)

“Accomplishment and success are often the result of commitment and perseverance rather than skill or talent.”—George V. Valkenburg (Elaine Tong)

“The harder you work and the more focused you are…the luckier you become.” (Paul Morrall)

“You can’t ask for a commitment greater than the size of your relationship.” (Clare Sauttner)

What about you? Do you have a favorite quote or words you live by? We’d love to know—share it with us on at

Monday, October 24, 2011

My recent ICF travels to Japan and South Korea

On October 7, ICF President Ed Modell, PCC, presented “what is coaching and the benefits of being an ICF member” at the American Chamber of Commerce Japan in Tokyo. His presentation included live coaching demonstrations and targeted human resource directors from large multi-national corporations and coaches in attendance.

On Saturday, the ICF Tokyo Chapter hosted a Global Coaching Forum in which Ed presented the value of ICF membership and the credential, ICF standards, the Global Coaching Study and Minimum Eligibility Requirements. Dr. Linda Semlitz addressed the psychological first aid in disaster recovery. The presentation included how coaches could provide appropriate support to people facing difficulties after the recent earthquake, tsunami and radiation.

A total of 70 coaches and personnel from coaching schools and human resource managers were in attendance. The forum ended with a party that went on through the evening celebrating coaching in Japan.

Finally, there was a meeting held that included myself and Ed, as well as key stakeholders from the coaching profession in Japan, including the ICF Tokyo Chapter, six coaching schools, a special interest group (SIG), and other groups. The conversation was around changes to the ICF Credential, membership eligibility requirements and other concerns affecting coaching.

Leaving Japan, we travelled to South Korea. The ICF Seoul Korea Chapter partnered with ICF Korea to host a one day coaching conference. Over 100 coaches, coaching school personnel, human resource managers and others attended a day coach learning. Ed Modell presented on “the value of ICF and the credential.”

Ed also did two coaching demonstrations to show the power of coaching. In addition, a panel of six PCC coaches told the audience why coaching was important in their lives and profession. Ed was also able to tell his life story about how he became a coach and his own personal transformation into coaching.

The coaching conference was a huge success. Members in both Japan and Korea were grateful that we came to visit them and honor them as members of the ICF global community of coaches.

Don Whittle is the ICF Director of Membership at ICF Global. He can be reached at  

Friday, October 21, 2011

Time is ticking…we still want to hear from you!

Your last chance to be a part of coaching research history is coming! The 2011 Global Coaching Study will officially close on November 15, after being open nearly six months collecting the viewpoints of coaching professionals from across the world.
As the greatly anticipated follow-up to the 2006 ICF Global Coaching Study, the 2011 study will bring the current global landscape of coaching into clearer focus. Independent research firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) is conducting the survey.

The study is open to all coaching professionals. To reach an even wider audience, the study has been offered in nine languages (English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Portuguese, and Spanish) and was compatible across several modes of mobile technology, including smart phones and tablet computers.

Once the study closes in mid-November, the data collected will lead to the creation of a robust “state of the industry” report that will provide coaches, organizations, and the media with an opportunity to learn more about today’s coaching industry. Final reports are expected to be available in early 2012.

PwC has advised that any country which delivers more than 100 survey respondents will be entitled to receive nation-specific data tables drawn from the study. To date, several countries have already surpassed this threshold! Do your part and participate so you too can benefit from more detailed findings about coaching in your country.

These findings will be beneficial when it comes to marketing your coaching practice in 2012 and beyond! You too can take advantage of these statistical findings by participating in this research.

If you haven’t already lent your voice to this research initiative—take a few minutes this weekend to do so! Participate in the study. Learn more about the study.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Evaluate Your Life

Today, some people will celebrate a lesser known “holiday” known as Evaluate Your Life day. October 19 is a day to STOP and really consider your life—where you are and where you’re headed.

The day can be as simple or as detailed as you want it to be. The entire point of acknowledging this “holiday” is to take an inventory of your life—and to make decisions and goals to supplement what you discover about yourself.

Some people will focus on a single aspect of their life. Be it work life, love life, family life, social life, etc. And others may focus on more tangible subjects, such as appearance, home, etc. Whatever area of your life you feel could use an inventory, take time today to stop and think. Find a quiet place where you can be alone with your thoughts. Pull out a journal and take a few notes. Determine those adjustments your own life can use. And put them to work!

If you need a nudge, a simple Internet search turned up a listing of these 35 questions that you could use to evaluate your life.

Other questions to get you started include:
  • Where are you?
  • Describe your current situation in three words.
  • Think back to who you were five years ago. Are you (today) where you thought you would be?
  • Where are you headed? Is it where you want to be? (If it isn’t, how can you get on the path you want to be on?)
  • What adjustments must you make?
The bottom line? You have one chance at life. Make it the best you can while you can!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Keeping your own counsel

Last night I was flicking through a book of mine which discussed that people join groups as they have a need or a want to be lead. One thing that struck me in this book was that because humans have an unrelenting need to belong to a group, these very groups (like church, self help groups etc) can begin to act as cults. Cults typically have a negative connotation so I looked at its meaning on the trusty Webster’s Online Dictionary:
Cult - “Attentive care; homage; worship”, “A system of religious belief and worship”.

I don’t want to get into the whole cult debacle because that could be a subject for another day, but my book stated that essentially (and this is in my own words) groups become a cult when we stop seeing our own greatness or brilliance and rely on the person or thing we worship or pay homage to, to give us answers or direction. In other words, we choose to follow a leader rather than follow our own soul. It was at this moment in the book that I sat up and took notice – not because of cults and what they mean because I have certainly experienced them in my lifetime (my brother belonged to a cult along with a very close friend) – but because we can often seek out others to give us answers rather than rely on our own inherent wisdom.

So let me pose a question to you. When you have a decision to make, what’s the first thing you do? Do you discuss it with all your friends and family to get their opinion (and sometimes feel even more confused) and eventually make a decision after you have heard all their advice? Or do you keep your own counsel and go within for the answer with the belief that you know what feels true or right for you?

Women are always willing to help friends and love ones with decisions and it is usually done with the best intentions. However, this ‘advice’ can often be fraught with projection, judgment and a very personal take on the world. By asking everyone’s advice on a pressing decision we inadvertently end up giving away our own power, our own sense of worth, because we think they have the answer, or the wisdom, not us. We want to be told, or lead to the answer. As well, the more we discuss the decision or issue with our friends and family or work colleagues, the more entangled we become in the ‘drama’ of it rather than the solution.

A great deal of research has been done on ‘paralysis by analysis’ which means that the more choice we are given, the harder it is to make a decision. Supermarkets experiment with this all the time. When they offer customers too much choice, sales go down, but when the choice is more limited, sales go up. Malcolm Gladwell illustrates this point beautifully in his book 'Blink' and states that your first initial gut feeling, or intuitive feeling is often correct and that too much choice hinders that initial knowing.

Perhaps one of the greatest things I love about coaching is that as a coach my job is simply to extract the knowledge, the wisdom, the experience and the intuition which already resides within the client. And I can tell you, when the answer they need suddenly breaks forth, it ALWAYS feels true to them and they walk away with a greater sense of ownership.

So next time you have a pressing decision or are unsure which path to take, before you go anywhere near your girlfriends, your family, your work colleagues or whoever you go to, try and go within for your answer as that’s where it resides. You may well need to do research; you may need to speak to experts, but start getting used to using your own counsel and trusting your own inherent wisdom and knowledge. As you get used to trusting yourself, you will most likely find the decision making process a whole lot easier. And that can only be a good thing.

This blog post first appeared on Anne Loyd's Professional and Personal Coaching Blog.

Anne Loyd
About Anne Loyd: As a coach working specifically with women, I am committed to helping women define and create their vision of a life they would love - in and out of the workplace. Creating a vision is the most passionate and wondrous way to live life. I help women reveal what they want to be, to do, to create, without the limitations of time, education, background and money that we shackle ourselves with. As a New Zealander living in London, I work with women all around the world who have the courage to make a change and who want to be an ordinary woman like you and I, doing something extraordinary. Learn more at

Friday, October 14, 2011

2011 ICF Award Overview

The ICF annually awards individual members, chapters and organizations that have demonstrated remarkable commitment to advancing the art, science and practice of professional coaching in their community and beyond. These awards, embodied by the ICF President’s Award, ICF Chapter Awards, and International Prism Awards, are presented each year during the Annual International Conference.
This year, these awards were presented in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA during two special ceremonies.

During the Appreciation and Recognition Luncheon for ICF leadership on September 24, six chapters were recognized in two awards categories for their local marketing and community outreach efforts. The recipients of the 2011 ICF Chapter Awards were:

Chapter Award winners. Not pictured: ICF Spain.
Local Spirit, Global Presence—Community Activism Award
  • Heartland Coaches Association—Greater Kansas City: for its partnership with the Heartland Habitat for Humanity (HHFH), a local nonprofit group, to provide professional coaching services to the HHFH team.
  • ICF Gauteng Chapter: for implementing its Coaching Caravan, which enabled the South African coaching community to offer free coaching, training and facilitation skills/services to individuals and community groups who would not normally have the opportunity to experience and benefit from these services.
  • ICF Metro DC: for its aggressive community outreach agenda which included partnerships with: Leadership Arlington (LA), Capital Youth Empowerment Program (CYEP), and Homeward Deployed.
Finding our Voice—Marketing/PR Award
  • ICF Uruguay: for organizing the first International Coaching Workshop (which drew over 100 participants), and for creating the first local association (AUCOP)—all during their first year as an ICF Chapter.
  • ICF Brazil: for the successful implementation of a cross channel advertising campaign, as well as the creation of a local website to facilitate the call for services and advertising of the ICF brand.
  • ICF Spain: for organizing the eighth ICF European Coaching Conference held in Madrid, Spain in 2011—an event attended by more than 450 participants from 29 countries.
During the Annual Business Meeting on September 26, two individuals were honored with the ICF President’s Award: Peter Goryalov and Irina Goryalova of Bulgaria.

2011 ICF President Ed Modell, PCC, selected Peter and Irina, a married couple, for the great contributions they have made in the name of coaching over the last several years. They formed the first coaching company in Bulgaria in 2006 and subsequently founded the ICF Bulgaria Chapter.

Peter Goryalov and Irina Goryalova
In the year since the chapter opened for business, membership has increased to 22 (including seven coaches trained through ICF approved coach training programs and two who hold an ICF Associate Certified Coach credential) and they have begun providing a series of masterclasses using the most modern video conferencing technology to bring top notch speakers “into” Bulgaria.

Also during the Annual Business Meeting, the ICF awarded two organizations with the International Prism Award. ICF has been issuing the international award since 2005 as a way to recognize those organizations that have enhanced excellence and business achievement through their commitment to coaching as a leadership strategy. The 2011 award winners are BC Housing and JOEY RESTAURANT GROUOP, both of Canada.

BC Housing
In 2007, BC Housing partnered with MICA (now Knightsbridge) to create its Leadership Development Program in an effort to develop its leadership talent and create a coaching for performance culture as part of its overall people strategy.

The initiative was first introduced at the executive level and was launched with senior level leader participation. Following a successful pilot, the program was expanded to include all leaders throughout the organization.

BC Housing’s commitment to coaching has helped transform the culture internally by closing the leadership gap, increasing the pool of competent leaders and creating a coaching culture. And overall, they have experienced better performance results.

It has been calculated that BC Housing has experienced a 70 percent return on investment!

BC Housing continues to invest in coaching and most recently launched ‘Coach2Coach’ for its senior leaders to deepen their coaching skills, broaden their leadership perspectives and build a community of practice.

On site to accept the award on behalf of BC Housing was Agnes Ross and Dian Patterson. And from Knightsbridge: Julie Jones, Senior Consultant of Leadership Solutions.
JOEY RESTAURANT GROUP Armed with the knowledge that coaching can benefit leadership in virtually any area of an organization, the JOEY RESTAURANT GROUP began its coaching initiative as the rest of the restaurant industry was faced with recession-related dilemmas.

The coaching initiative began with the strategic selection of the most senior leaders in the organization, essentially so they could be coached and be trained as internal coaches, all while running their restaurant regions! Since then, numerous coaching strategies and processes have been used with employees across the organization for leadership development, conflict management and personal growth.

In the last 30 months, they have experienced more than 30 percent revenue growth, reduced turnover and made the Top 100 employers list for the first time ever. Not only that, but JOEY calculates a 682 percent return on investment from their coaching initiative!

JOEY believes in coaching as a key development tool and an integral part of supporting growth at all levels in the organization—particularly so they will have an abundance of talent ready to step up to the next level of leadership when needed.

On site to accept the award on behalf of JOEY RESTAURANT GROUP was Andrew Martin and Al Jessa. And from Essential Impact: Marjorie Busse, MCC; Dave Busse, PCC; and Carollyne Conlinn, MCC.
Stay tuned: the videos from the 2011 award winners will be posted to the ICF channel on YouTube shortly. Learn more about ICF Awards at

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Integrating Our Private and Public Selves

SIG Energy Work and Coaching: The Next Wave
Presenter: Rhona Post MCC
When: Third Monday of Every Month, Monday October 17th, 11:00am ET
Telephone: 1-212-457-9879
Pin: 622186#

In the mid 80’s, when I first studied coaching with James Flaherty, CEO of New Ventures West, he asserted that we all wanted the same things for ourselves. More love. More joy. More peace.

Although we adored, even loved our clients, we did not sell love, peace and joy in business environments. We designed our communication to address business issues, like increased effectiveness and efficiency. Our corporate packages aligned with clients’ hopes, goals and concerns.

Some of us shelved the desire to address a person’s deeper concerns, about life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as we sought to keep what’s personal separate from what’s professional. Like our clients, we had private and public identities. Oftentimes, there were great disparities between our internal lives and what we showed the world. What kinds of examples come to mind for you when you think about private and public identities?

After more than 25 years in this profession, I’m circling back around the concepts of peace, love and joy, because I’ve observed that being more effective does not produce greater love, peace or joy.

How does this relate to Energy Work and Coaching? Since I incorporated the energy healing protocols in my coaching, I can more easily assist clients to face and bridge their personal and public identities. The goal of healer coaching is to help folks integrate the head and heart reducing the compartmentalization upon which we have effectively shaped our existence.

Rhona Post, MCC

During our October call we will explore how we create and work from two identities. Do you have two selves? Is the self you show the world in better shape than the self you keep private? Or vice versa? Would you like to heal the rift or sense of separateness you experience even as you extend yourself to others?

Please join us on Monday, October 17th, 11am ET for our monthly SIG call.

For more information contact Rhona Post, MCC by telephone +1.941.554.8466 or by email

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Living it up in Las Vegas

Late last month, more than 1,000 coaching professionals, including 295 first timers, met in *fabulous* Las Vegas, Nevada, USA at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino for the 2011 ICF Annual International Conference.

Audience during a general session
Before the conference even officially began, attendees were busy with the Global Leadership Forum (where the six Chapter Award winners were announced; congratulations to ICF Greater Kansas City Chapter—Heartland Coaches Association; ICF Gauteng Chapter; ICF Metro DC; ICF Uruguay; ICF Brazil; and ICF Spain!)* and the ICF Assessor’s Meeting.

2011 Chapter Award winners (not pictured: ICF Spain)
Once conference kicked off the evening of September 24, attendees from 43 countries played to the edge through 32 targeted breakout educational sessions (47 speakers from 39 countries facilitated)—including three world class keynote presentations provided by Michael Gelb, Sir Ken Robinson and Steve Farber.
Sir John Whitmore, September 26 keynote
Steve Farber, September 27 keynote
Tagged onto the September 26 general session was the Annual Business Meeting, led by ICF President Ed Modell, PCC. It was during this segment that the 2011 President’s and International Prism Awards were presented. Congratulations to Peter Goryalov and Irina Goryalova of Bulgaria (recipients of the 2011 President’s Award), and BC Housing and JOEY RESTAURANT GROUP (recipients of the International Prism Award)!*

Peter Goryalov and Irina Goryalova 

BC Housing and Knightsbridge representatives

JOEY RESTAURANT GROUP and Essential Impact representatives
In addition to educational offerings, attendees had the option to sift through the 48 exhibits in the exhibit hall, offering the latest tools and services to coaching professionals. [The ICF would like to offer a huge THANK YOU to all ICF Conference sponsors and exhibitors! Thanks for being a part of our 2011 conference!] And, of course, there were networking receptions each night to cap off each day.

The Exhibit Hall
The Opening Reception was especially popular. This event, led by opening keynote Michael Gelb, included a wine and chocolate tasting as well as a poetry writing contest. In fact, Michael took every submission back to his room that night and selected his top four poems—and gave out prizes at the conclusion of his keynote the next morning.

Michael Gelb (opening keynote presenter) at the Opening Reception
All in all, the event appears to have been an immense success! Were you in Las Vegas for the ICF Conference? We want to know what you thought! What was your biggest takeaway? Favorite feature

*Look for a more detailed post on all award winners coming next week to the ICF blog.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Is This Thing On? 3 Tips for Waking Up Your Full Voice

Barbara's book, available today.
Vocal habits area like any other habit – they’re persistent, unconscious, and difficult to budge. Here are three tips for making your voice come alive.

Break out of your “voice box”
Stretch your voice beyond the way you usually talk. Think of it as a kind of “voice yoga.” A good way to begin is to speak as different characters. Say the sentence: “I am a brilliant coach” as Darth Vader. Now as Luciano Pavarotti (go ahead and sing that one!). Now as Julia Child, the Wicked Witch of the West, and Marilyn Monroe. Notice the changes that occur in your voice. Which ones felt comfortable and familiar? Which ones made your skin crawl?

Challenge yourself to choose the right voice for the job
You unconsciously change your tone of voice all the time. (I hope you don’t talk to your pets the same way you talk to a prospective client!) I invite you to be deliberate about choosing a tone of voice that is congruent with your words and intentions. If you need to project authority, speak low and slow. If you need to incite passion, bring a little Luciano into your sound. If you want to extend compassion, speak with a warmer, gentler tone.

I explain this idea more thoroughly in this short video.

Invite your body to the party
Most of the vocal issues I see are a result of the “dead body syndrome.” The voice gets trapped in the throat. There isn’t enough breath to support a viable sound. The face goes flat and unexpressive. The simple act of bringing more vital physical energy into how you speak will improve your vocal presence.

Barbara McAfee is a voice coach, singer/songwriter, keynote speaker, and the author of Full Voice: The Art and Practice of Vocal Presence (Berrett-Koehler Publishers). She has released six music CDs and lives across the street from the Mississippi River in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. She blogs at Learn more at