Community Service as a Cornerstone of the Coaching Profession: How Giving Makes You Rich

Many new coaches worry a great deal about how to build their business, how much to charge, who their ideal clients are…all of these are legitimate concerns that have an impact on how coaches think about their time and energy, but they are based in fear, and worry that there might not be enough (clients, business opportunities, money) to go around.

I believe that, paradoxically, when you stay connected to your purpose, to what drew you to coaching in the first place, there is most often a foundation of caring, a desire to help and to contribute to growth of people and their businesses that motivates many people when they think about coaching. I’m writing to encourage you to broaden your vision and to consider adopting a policy of carrying even one pro bono client in your practice. Alternatively, work with your chapter to help identify potential community service projects. It is an amazing way to add to your skills, gain valuable experience, and bank coaching hours toward your next credential, while contributing to your larger community in tangible ways.

Some ICF Chapters provide ongoing support for nonprofit organizations, others respond to a crisis or situation where coaching can help. Check out this link to an article on the ICF Global website for tips on how to get started within a chapter.  We have a wonderful local example where Vancouver Island coaches, partnering with coaches from Greece, helped to establish a coaching program that trains coaches in a number of areas including coaching trauma, managing boundaries and cross-cultural management and matches them with volunteers working with refugees in Greece, Italy and Portugal. Check their Facebook page!

Do you already do community service within your practice? We’d love to hear about it! Please email Janet Sheppard and let’s build awareness! We are all richer when we care for our community.

Submitted by: Janet Sheppard, Director of Community Relations