5 Ways to Use ICF Industry Research to Boost Your Coaching Business

Abby Heverin November 3, 2016 1
5 Ways to Use ICF Industry Research to Boost Your Coaching Business

Every year, ICF invests in research that provides up-to-date insights on the coaching industry. ICF industry research provides coach practitioners with valuable knowledge on the current state of coaching, as well as the trends that will impact the coaching profession in the coming years.

Below are five ways that you can use ICF’s suite of industry research in your coaching business:

1. Articulate the importance of credibility. A growing number of individuals and organizations are demanding professional coach practitioners who have obtained coach-specific training; joined a professional coaching organization, such as ICF; and pursued a coaching credential.

As this infographic based on recent ICF industry research shows, credentialed coaches command higher fees and report more clients and greater annual revenue from coaching than their peers without a credential. The key stat to share with your clients: Ninety-three percent of clients who partnered with a credentialed coach report satisfaction with the experience (Source: 2014 ICF Global Consumer Awareness Study).

2. Evaluate your pricing. The executive summary for the 2016 ICF Global Coaching Study shows average annual revenue from coaching by global region. It’s important to keep in mind that a number of factors impact revenue (e.g., your level of experience, the country or countries where you practice, the types of clients you work with); however, it can be helpful to consider your annual revenue from coaching as it compares to your region. It’s possible that you may want to adjust your pricing to ensure that the rates you’re commanding match the value of the services you’re delivering. (The final report for the 2016 Global Coaching Study includes details on what your peers charge for an hour of coaching.)

3. Understand the global marketplace. If you’re considering expanding the geographic borders of your coaching business, it’s helpful to keep in mind that clients’ expectations of the coaching experience (e.g., length of a coaching session, length of the coaching engagement, platforms where coaching takes place) vary by region. The executive summary and final report for the 2016 Global Coaching Study provide helpful insights into how coaching engagements vary worldwide, while the 2014 Global Consumer Awareness Study provides an in-depth look at the perspective of consumers from 25 countries.

4. Discover what’s on the minds of organizational decision-makers. Whether you’re an internal or external coach practitioner, you need an understanding of the issues and trends impacting coaching inside organizations. ICF’s suite of research conducted in partnership with the Human Capital Institute provides up-to-date information on what organizations are doing to build strong coaching cultures, as well as the drivers for implementing coaching and perceived impediments to coaching. The most recent ICF/HCI study, Building a Coaching Culture with Managers and Leaders, focuses on training and professional development for managers/leaders using coaching skills.

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Rey Carr
One of the most successful marketing activities of the International Coach Federation (ICF) has been to call their faulty surveys “research.” This strategy gives the appearance that the results of the surveys are credible, valid, and reliable, when in fact, they violate most gold standard principles associated with research. In addition, the ICF wants people to believe that their surveys reflect or represent the current state of coaching or the coaching industry, when in fact, a significant portion of those involved in the coaching industry neither pay attention to nor are involved with ICF. And most importantly, the ICF markets… Read more »