Preparing for the Future through Coaching
Giving the “Gift of Coaching” entails identifying deep needs, forging meaningful partnerships with nonprofit organizations that share our commitment to changing the world, and applying the coaching where and how it’s needed most. The ICF Foundation’s Gift of Coaching Awards program celebrates ICF Chapters with impactful pro bono coaching initiatives that make a difference in their communities.
This month, we are spotlighting ICF Australasia, the 2018 Single Award Winner for their work with The University of Queensland (QA).
UQ is one of Australia’s leading research and teaching institutions. The ICF Australasia Chapter partnered with the University’s Business School Student Employability team. Students were supported by coaching as they went through their post-graduation readiness process. The partnership not only unlocked students’ potential but also created a greater awareness of the difference between coaching and mentoring.
The coaching program with ICF Australasia enhanced the students’ reflective practices and provided them with another life experience to draw from. ICF Australasia Coaches provided a service that parallels both their coachee’s aspirations and the goals of the program. Coaching created greater value and a deeper level of learning for each student who participated in the initiative.
“Helping to set students up for success through coaching provision seemed like the perfect opportunity for us to give back to the community and make a difference. As students will become our leaders of the future, we also saw it an opportunity to promote ICF and the coaching profession by offering students the opportunity to experience firsthand the benefits of coaching,” said Kathryn Donaldson, Leadership Team Member from ICF Australasia.
ICF Australasia and UQ worked together to measure the effectiveness of the initiative using check-ins and surveys of both participants and coaches. Over 30 coaches were matched with 44 student participants. One hundred percent of student respondents indicated that they would participate in the ICF Australasia coaching program again if offered the opportunity.
“Coaching sessions enabled me to figure out my aspiration for my life, which can be the standard for me to choose my career path and actions,” said one of the students’ who was surveyed.
Donaldson said the impact of pro bono coaching on the community and the chapter was also very tangible. This partnership allowed ICF Australasia to build relationships with UQ Business School and gain valuable exposure to promote the benefits of coaching among the student population and industry mentors. It could not have worked without the wonderful and generous contribution of our coaches, Kathryn explained.
“I would suggest finding an organization where the Gift of Coaching can make a real difference. Find an ICF team who have already gone through the experience of setting up a pro bono initiative to learn from their experience. Take the time to plan out the program, agree objectives with the organization from the start including how you will measure success. Communicate expectations to the coaches involved and check in with them regularly to ensure the program is running smoothly,” said Kathryn, on how to get your own chapter started with Gift of Coaching.
The ICF Foundation presented ICF Australasia with the award at the 2019 ICF Global Leaders Forum in Dublin, Ireland, on March 22, 2019.
The Gift of Coaching Awards program celebrates ICF Chapters with impactful pro bono coaching initiatives that make a difference in their communities and in the world. The Gift of Coaching Awards program represents the mission of the Foundation, intended to leverage the excellent work ICF Chapters are already doing to increase awareness of and better their communities through professional coaching. If you would like to learn more about the Gift of Coaching Awards, visit https://foundationoficf.org/giftofcoaching/ or participate in the “Preparing Your Gift of Coaching Application” webinar on September 3.