The Hidden Benefits of Your ICF Global Membership

Support and Connection

Communities of Practice are, in my opinion, a well-kept secret of the ICF Global website, and a benefit of membership that I’d love to know how many local members take advantage of.

The term “Communities of Practice”, meaning “groups of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly”, comes from the work of Etienne Wenger, a consultant and researcher who studies and consults with organizations and professionals as learners.  Wenger actually started out researching apprentices, to understand how they become more expert.

As professional coaches we are expected to be lifelong learners, to be upgrading our qualifications and deepening our knowledge of what promotes learning, growth, and change in our clients. There are many things, though, that are unique to the context of our individual and organizational clients that we need to be able to work with in informed and ethical ways.

In this brief article, I’d love to pique your interest, and invite you to check out the Communities of Practice currently available to you, including webinars taught by subject matter experts, and providing CCEU’s, all at no additional cost to your ICF Global membership.

Currently there are ten unique Communities of Practice for you to explore and join:

  • Team and Work Coaching CoP
  •  Life Vision and Enhancement Coaching CoP
  • Internal Coaching CoP
  • Health and Wellness CoP
  • Government Coaching CoP
  •  Executive and Leadership CoP
  •  Ethics CoP
  •  Coaching Science CoP
  •  Coaching and Human Capital CoP
  •  Career Coaching CoP

Please check these out and sign up for one of their webinars. To truly take advantage of your membership, explore the website and find out what other hidden benefits await. I’d love to hear your feedback and am happy to pass on our member experience to the relevant stakeholders at ICF.

Click here to access the ICF CoP webpage.

Further reading on Etienne Wenger’s concept of Communities of Practice.

~ Janet Sheppard, Director Community Relations (Mid)

Announcing: New Chapter Sponsor

Well Priced Business Insurance for ICF Vancouver Island Chapter Members

Following up on a lead from the ICF Vancouver Chapter we have successfully established an agreement with a new Chapter Sponsor. Our new Chapter Sponsor, TruShield Insurance, is able to provide Members with economical Insurance Policies for General Liability as well as Professional Liability (Errors & Omissions). All Chapter Members will qualify for the preferred rates from TruShield. Sponsorship funds will be used to offset the cost of events for our Members (this includes a current year focus on maintaining a low ticket price for our 2018 AGM).

Quotations are available now from TruShield at 1-844-863-3522. The TruShield contact information will be posted on our Chapter website.

When you contact them for a quote, 1-844-863-3522, please let them know that you are a Member in good standing of the ICF Vancouver Island Chapter.

Next Steps: To optimize the quote speed and policy pricing we need to supply the underwriters with some aggregate data about our chapter membership. With this in mind please watch your inbox for a brief but important survey coming from the BOD in September.

Please watch for additional updates.

~ John Burr, Treasurer 

Announcing: Cross Canada Coaching Series

Mark your calendars! The Cross Canada pilot project, created by ICF chapters Vancouver Island, Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto and Quebec is ready to take flight.

ICF Vancouver Island members will have exclusive free access to five webinars offered across Canada during the Fall of 2018 and Winter 2019.

The presenters are outstanding ICF credentialed coaches. These experts will deepen your learning and understanding of select ICF Core Competencies during these interactive and engaging webinars.

Please visit our events calendar page for further information.

Looking Ahead As We Plan Chapter Events For Autumn 2018

The Board met in mid-June to reflect on activities, services, celebrations and learnings of the first half of this 2018 term.  And we did some thoughtful planning around how we may serve you for remainder of the year.  In keeping with our 2018 theme of Inspired Connections, we are excited to share some of the ideas we have in development:

September 20: Cross Canadian Coaching Series – Vancouver Island Chapter Webinar – Meeting Ethical Guidelines and Professional Standards

September 25: ICF Vancouver Island Chapter Webinar – LinkedIn-Aligning Brand with Impressions

October TBD: ICF Vancouver Island Webinar – Effective Networking

October 14: ICF Vancouver Island Chapter Event – Comox – Inspiring Coaches to Connect

October 17: Cross Canadian Coaching Series – Edmonton Chapter Webinar – Creating Awareness

October TBD: Potential Joint Event with ICF Vancouver Island Chapter & Mid-Island Coaches Assoc. – Inspiring Coaches to Connect

November 15: Cross Canadian Coaching Series – Calgary Chapter – Powerful Questioning

November TBD: ICF Vancouver Island Chapter Event – Magic Metaphors Workshop

December 8: ICF Vancouver Island Chapter Event – Annual General Meeting & Brunch

Want to share some feedback? Please drop a note. Or better yet, join the board (we have an opening) and help us make a positive impact.

~Tracy Houser, President

President’s Message: Lazy Days of Summer

Hello Members, I hope summer is treating you well.

With the sunshine, festivals and joy of backyard BBQs, there is a renewal of energy and our connection to community shines in the summer! Whatever community you cherish, I hope that you are revelling in the magic of people, activities and moments of unparalleled wonder.

When I was a child, I couldn’t wait for school to be finished, knowing I would be barefoot for months.  I loved the idea of the days stretched out before me with no formal structure or schedule. It was a time for outdoor discovery, a reconnection to the lake, and a time to be lost for hours (purposefully) in the gardens and forests.  There was something quite blissful about not knowing what came next.

As an adult, my impulse is to look back upon those lazy days and dismiss them as a lovely dream, something not possible today with obligations and work. And then my inner-coach comes alive and asks, “What assumptions are you making?”  “How are they serving you?” and “What could ‘lazy days’ looks like this summer?” Then came the big zinger question: “What would ‘lazy days’ feel like this summer?” Yes, thanks to the recent workshop with Marlena Field (Using the Wisdom of the Body in Decision Making), I am noticing what my body is telling me.

My body remembers the freedom, the joy, the thrill – it was the anticipation of the unknown, all the possibilities that stretched before me.

What does the promise of summer mean to you?
Regardless of any summer that has come before, how can you create the summer of 2018 that will fill you up?

Another Impactful Workshop on Salt Spring Island!

An early Saturday morning ferry with coaching colleagues is always a great way to start the weekend. The sharing, laughter, curious questions and learning vibe filled our car as we left thoughts of the week behind and moved toward a coaching workshop that beckoned us on Salt Spring Island.

The beautiful space was warm and welcoming (thanks to the magic of members Emma-Louise Elsey and Lynda Monk).  The room was awash in positive energy. Old friends reunited and new colleagues were welcomed.  We introduced facilitator Marlena Field and she grounded us into our bodies with an opening meditation.  When I heard the invitation to “breathe from the heart,” I knew it was where I was supposed to be that day.

For the next three hours we explored Body Centered Coaching in this workshop called Using the Wisdom of the Body in Decision-Making. Marlena offered that this approach is adding to what we already do (being present, listening deeply, building relationship).  She encouraged us to embrace “not knowing” and guided us to be comfortable in our own skin as coaches, not needing to know what’s going to happen.

Knowing the power of words, she enticed us to consider “an experimental attitude” and like a child, to “wonder what would happen if…”  And so, we were introduced to coaching people to listen to what their body knows. And as the session progressed, not only did we experience a demo, we were invited to apply the learning right then and there.

We partnered up to be a coach using this approach or to be a coachee, experiencing this approach personally. We found ourselves “standing in the decision,” acting as if we had made a decision and then paying attention to what was going on in our body and our hearts. We then stepped into another space in the room representing a different decision. And we were reminded that it takes time and space for the body work to unfold.

It felt like the tip of an iceberg, or the opening of a treasure box where you only get a peek of the gems – yet what a start! Thank you Marlena for creating and holding the space for us to explore. It reminded me of a famous quote:

“The body never lies.”   ~Martha Graham

Webinar Events – Life Coaching isn’t Just for Grownups AND More Clients, Less Marketing

Thursday, February 15th – Webinar: Life Coaching Isn’t Just for Grownups
Life Coaching Isn’t Just for Grownups – Three Skills All Kids Should Learn Before the Age of 10 (and they work for grownups too)!
When faced with challenges or disappointments, most kids don’t have the tools to handle them. As a result, they often get down on themselves or give up on themselves – developing belief systems that can hold them back for the rest of their lives. As coaches, we’ve seen the impact of childhood events on adult clients over-and-over again!

Coaching isn’t just for grownups. It’s a game changer for our youth when they learn how to break through limiting beliefs and proactively create supportive beliefs to help them thrive. Life coaching can help kids learn how to use the power of their thoughts to handle the ups and downs of growing up and to develop a mindset for creating happiness, confidence, and success in life.

There is still time to register for this amazing webinar.  Click here!
Tuesday, March 6th –  Webinar: More Clients, Less Marketing
More Clients, Less Marketing: How to Create More Leads and Income by Doing LESS
If you love coaching and want it to be easier to attract more clients consistently, join us!

This highly interactive class gives you the simplest, most effective way to generate a steady stream of high-end clients without giving up your nights and weekends. In a no-hype environment, we’ll create immediately implementable client generation tools, customized to your strengths and values.

Facilitator, Mary Cravets works with purpose-driven coaches to significantly grow their businesses without working nights and weekends. Her career focused on answering one question: “How do I make a living, making a difference?”

Workshop Event – Networking for Coaches: an essential skill


We would like to invite you to our exciting workshop in February!

Networking for Coaches – An Essential Skill

Do you dread networking events? Have you ever deliberately arrived late so you don’t have to talk to many people and then left as soon as possible after the speaker?

Do you know that you really should do more networking and yet you resist, or perhaps you just don’t know where the best places would be for you to go to meet people?

Join Speaker, Workshop Leader and ICF Accredited PCC Coach Sue Maitland and she’ll help you see networking in a completely different light and develop a strategy that will help you plan your networking and show up confidently at networking events feeling completely natural and authentic.

Sue Maitland PCC enjoyed a successful career in IT for over 25 years in roles as diverse and programmer, project manager, resource manager/recruiter and sales executive. 5 years ago, she made the conscious choice to follow her passion and trained to become an ICF accredited professional coach by completing The Art and Science of Coaching program with Erickson International College. Sue now helps other professionals who are experiencing or planning a life or career transition and particularly enjoys supporting men and women in STEM careers. She is an active member of iWIST.

President’s Corner – message for February 2018


Hello Members – Happy 2018;

I love this time of new beginnings.  It feels like a time of renewal.  The start of a new year brings opportunity for pausing and setting intention for the coming 12 months.  What is it that you are looking for in terms of your coaching practice?  What learning awaits that will expand your professional skills?  How would you like to get connected to your coaching colleagues or your local ICF chapter?

I can hear a former dance teacher, right after he had given a particularly challenging dance sequence and we were all at the sidelines, a little nervous about our ability to execute, he would look over with a confident grin and say “This could be good!”  We believed him and we danced with whole hearts.  It just dawned on me that he was holding us capable.

This Could Be Good!

Your new board is very excited to find creative ways to serve you.  We are also looking for ways to expand the profile of professional coaching in the community.  We came together on January 14th to onboard six new board members and discover how this eight member board (so far) can work as an integrated team to better serve you.

Looking at the member input from late fall 2017 and the many possibilities that we see for the coming year, a single theme emerged: Creating Connections. Just imagine what good things could emerge out of connection in 2018. 

Walk With Us

Our planning day included a review of our vision, mission and strategic goals and we wanted to try a new approach to our planning; something that would get us into the left side of our brain where intuition and creativity thrive. Our Vice President Cheryl Joslin led us through several segments where we created characters, actions and ultimately visions for the various portfolios as well as an overall vision for the chapter – using lego.  Yes, you read that correctly. We busted open the lego and capitalized on metaphor and story to hone in in what we feel is important – the future we want to create for our chapter.

We’re pleased to be walking this journey of coaching with our members over the coming year.  We want to share our work in progress, to give you a sneak peak into what we’ve been working on.  So check out our DRAFT document on the Strategic Priorities for 2018 .  Have questions?  Want to share some feedback?  Please drop a note to me at or give me a call at 250-658-3063.

And So It Begins…

A connection is a relationship between two things, people, or groups. We have set our intention and already things are happening.  I had the pleasure of meeting a member for coffee last week and we delighted in learning about one another, exchanging ideas, and brainstorming possible ways she can get involved.  I also reached out to another long standing member who has deep coaching experience and he has offered to design and deliver a webinar.  I am reminded that it is this personal connection that I value.

I hope to meet you at one of our upcoming webinars or our first face-to-face workshop for this year (check out the other sections in the newsletter for details). In addition to connecting with local chapter members, in mid-March I will be attending the ICF Global Leaders Forum (held in Vancouver this year), where I will have the opportunity to connect with chapter leaders from around the world, learn about the latest coaching trends, share best practices, and celebrate the advancements we are making in the coaching profession.

With whom will you connect in 2018?



ICF Web Portal and Member Resource Webinar

You are invited to hear Kristin Kelly, Regional Development Manager for North America, ICF Global, provide our chapter with an overview of the brand new ICF Portal and all the wonderful member resources available. Please join us to hear and see what’s new and available to you! There is no charge for this event and you can register here.  A Zoom link will be sent to registered attendees a couple of days before the webinar.

Kristin has been a part of the ICF Global staff since 2007, first serving in the Marketing Department and now as Regional Development Manager for North America since 2014. On the ICF Regional Support Team, she plays a key customer service role, assisting in Chapter creation, regional activities, and servicing the day-to-day needs of the North American membership at large. She graduated from the University of Kentucky in May 2007 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism. Kristin lives in Lexington, Kentucky with her husband, three-year-old son and one-year-old daughter.

We look forward to you joining us!

Vancouver Island Coaches Association