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Ethics in Action

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What would the coaching profession look like if there were no trust between the coach and client and coach to coach?  I suspect there wouldn’t be much of an industry.  All of us individually have an impact on the “trust factor” every day we practice coaching and interact with our colleagues.  It is because of the thoughtful practice of coaching and the coaching organizations that have helped to build the industry that we have some common standards that, in turn, generate the trust that sustain a coaching marketplace that hires and deploys coaches.

As a member of the Independent Review Board of the International Coach Federation, one of us (our guest editor, Sandi Stewart) has reviewed numerous cases of breaches of the ethics code. More often than not, these breaches aren’t due to mal-intent on the part of coaches, but rather to a lack of understanding of good coaching practices and poor communication with clients and other coaches.

This issue of The Future of Coaching is titled: “Ethics in Action.”  It focuses on some of the key things to know about ethics in coaching.  It provides steps you can take to build a consciously ethical practice. Two categories of articles appear here (along with a third section that provides valuable coaching resources):

  • How do we think about ethics as coaches?
  • What are some of the tools that build ethics into our coaching practice?

As you read the articles of this issue, please take some time to reflect on your own practice – what ethical challenges do you face or might you face in the future?

Here’s what’s in this issue:

 Section 1: How do we think about ethics as coaches?

In Seeking Ethical Maturity Through Curiosity And Continuous Learning,  Kathy Taberner, an executive coach and author on curiosity, offers two principles for continued learning and growth as ethical professionals.

In Case Studies and Good Questions to Ask Yourself, Patrick Williams gives us some real life examples of ethical dilemmas and then some questions to ponder for us to stretch our ethical thinking muscles.

In The Ten Commandments for Game Changers, Thomas Zweifel brings the 10 Commandments to life in the modern age of coaching and shows us the ethical conversation that has been going on for ages.

In It’s Okay…Not Today…But I Support You Guys Anyway, Jonathan Lewis Smith shares his personal challenges in opening people into the possibility of a different ethical mindset.

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