As the world’s largest organization leading the global advancement of the coaching profession and fostering coaching’s role as an integral part of a thriving society, ICF sets standards for excellence for credentialing, accreditation and ethical practices. But the professional coaching industry had an image problem: a Harper’s Magazine article about coaching disparaged the industry and questioned the validity of coaches. For ICF, it was a wake-up call. The organization knew that if its rapid growth were to continue, it would need to combat such commentary with positive messaging about coaching’s impact and ICF’s role in establishing the gold standard for coaching ethics and credentialing. It engaged Stanton to drive this effort.
Starting with Stanton’s Matrix Blueprint process, the team interviewed several key stakeholders, assessed the ongoing dialogue about coaching in the media, and studied ICF’s extensive research studies to formulate a strategy that would bring ICF’s message of the power of coaching and best practices all over the world. Seven years into our partnership, the Matrix plan continues to inform the core messaging we bring to our strategies and outreach. We work closely with ICF’s internal communications team to seamlessly integrate our media outreach, event support, materials development, spokesperson training, chapter and member PR education efforts with the organization’s other communications initiatives. Our programs amplify ICF’s high standards and leadership, spotlight personal and organizational stories that showcase the power of coaching, and promote the deep expertise within ICF and its network of credentialed coaches.
Our public relations efforts have generated well over 500 media placements in more than 20 countries identified by ICF as priority regions. These include Argentina, the Czech Republic, India, Kenya, the Middle East, and more, reaching beyond 6 billion impressions. ICF’s CEO has been cited as a thought leader for topics in prominent outlets including Harvard Business Review, Wall Street Journal, and Chief Learning Officer. ICF Credentialed coaches have been featured in Asharq Live, BBC Africa, Continuamente Noticias, EURO, Financial Times, Forbes Middle East, Panamerica TV, Silicon India, and many others, offering insightful perspectives to build coaching skills, create coaching cultures and the impacts working with a coach can garner.
Most importantly, ICF continues to be referenced globally as the gold standard for the profession and has achieved rapid expansion, with a 26.9% growth rate between 2015 and 2019. Meanwhile, the profession has also expanded, with 33% global growth over the same period due to increases in demand for coaching services in regions all over the world. Today, ICF holds an esteemed position within the global coaching community, as do the professional coaches who uphold the organization’s best practices.