Home Research Coaching Surveys Development of Coaches: IV. Does Age Make A Difference?

Development of Coaches: IV. Does Age Make A Difference?

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Both versions of the Development of Coaches questionnaire are based on one devised by the Collaborative Research Network of the Society for Psychotherapy Research in their international study of development among professional psychotherapists described by Orlinsky and Rønnestad in How Psychotherapists Develop (Orlinsky & Rønnestad, 005). Both of the coaching studies include questions that parallel those used in the Society’s Development of Psychotherapists Common Core Questionnaire. This enables us not only to study varied aspects of coaches’ development, but also compare responses of coaches to these made by psychotherapists. Many questions have been posed over the past twenty years concerning the similarities and differences between professional coaching and psychotherapy. The data being gathered in these two surveys will provide some of the first answers regarding this comparison.

Modification of Development of Psychotherapists Survey

In adapting the questionnaire, members of the Development of Coaches Research Collaborative drew on their own experiences as coaches to ask questions that they hoped would seem meaningful and relevant to those responding to the questionnaire. The majority of questions could be answered quickly by checking alternatives that most closely reflected the respondent’s own experience.

Instructions to the Respondents

In the case of both surveys, respondents were asked to answer all of the questions and were provided with the following framework:

The complete set of responses provides us with a fuller understanding of your own work and the context in which you work. You may find these questions offer a useful opportunity to reflect on your own coaching career. If any seem difficult to answer exactly, give your best estimate and continue. To ensure confidentiality, the questionnaire is completed anonymously. Information you provide will be used only for research purposes.

 Designers of the original survey proposed that the respondents would benefit in two ways. These two benefits made this truly a collaborative effort between those who designed the questionnaire and those who completing it. Following is a statement offered to those considering completion of the second survey:

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One Comment

  1. Rey Carr

    September 15, 2016 at 6:55 pm

    There are a number of important points made in this article. And not just the ones that I’m quoted as saying. As a clarification about the value of surveys, I wasn’t picking on SurveyMonkey specifically, but on survey methods in general. This fifth report is another example of the limits of most Internet surveys where the responses of the respondents cannot be used to make valid generalizations about coaching. There is no data collected here that yields confidence in either the reliability of the survey or allow us to make credible claims about the survey findings.

    We can speculate, guess, and create talking points. That’s the value of this survey. Another important point from this survey is wondering about the role age might play in coach development From Bill’s results it appears that coaches keep the same perspectives over time. But what we can really say is that the coaches who completed this survey may keep such perspectives over time.

    In addition, there is a whole group of younger coaches who are not connected to certification or professional coaching associations. This is the parallel universe of uncredentialed (and could care less about it) people who call themselves coaches.


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