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Supporting your coaches

If you are serious about coaching in your organisation, you may want to undertake some more formal study or train at least some of your coaches formally. Coaching is not regulated in the UK and there are many providers of coaching training. As is to be expected, the quality and type of training available varies considerably. There are many excellent courses available ranging from accredited short courses to full length courses leading to nationally recognised qualifications.  Ideally, look for courses accredited by a recognised organisation, such as those accredited by the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM), the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC) or the International Coach Federation (ICF) or leading to a recognised qualification within the National Qualifications Framework, ideally both.


Once qualified coaches require ongoing opportunities to practice and for staff development, one element of which should be to be coached themselves on a regular basis. It is also important to establish a practice of coaching supervision, where coaches can reflect on their coaching with a more experienced coach and explore any difficult issues confidentially. This can be done individually or in groups. It has three key purposes: to ensure that the coach works within a professional and ethical framework; to continue the professional development of the coach; and to provide a safe environment in which the coach can address challenges encountered in their coaching.  Supervision is usually provided by a more experienced coach, often from outside the organisation. 

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