How You Can Remove Hurdles to Coaching Certification (S7E14)

Released Thursday, 2nd May 2019
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On a recent Called to Coach, we spoke with Angela Davenport, Senior Learning Design Consultant at Gallup, about getting certified as a coach with Gallup and with other organizations, and how certification benefits you as a coach. We also discussed how Gallup-Certified Coaches can get recertified.

Our guest host was Maika Leibbrandt, Gallup Senior Workplace Consultant.

[2:22] Jim Collison: Angela, last webcast, last update -- for February -- we spent a lot of time talking about the value of certification. And we've recorded it in video form; you can listen to that. We made some videos that are on our certification page. But we wanted to come back this update and hear from Angela on some of the tactical things around certification and the value of it from -- more than just what we provide in our certification but actually some external stuff.

Maika, when folks are certifying, you work with them individually at times -- it's a chance for folks who are struggling, and we help coach them through. Anything you'd add?

[3:13] Maika Leibbrandt: Sure, so I do get to work quite a bit helping shuffle people through our Gallup certification, and we talked in a previous update about the importance and the benefit of being certified. I'll tell it this way: I had somebody come to work on my Wi-Fi because Jim kept telling me it was dropping. And the guy who showed up climbed up into my attic and did something -- I wasn't there -- but he came back down and said, "You had a little ingress in your wires." I still don't know what that means, but I know what he did to fix it was he cleaned out all of the "plaque" s0 I had a better connection.

And that's one thing certification does for you -- it removes any hurdles and makes sure that we're still connected to you and you're still connected to us. So you, No. 1, can have that validation externally for your clients but also you can stay connected to anything that's going on, anything that's new, any more relevant discoveries. It's really going to help you change the lives of your clients.

So it's been a wonderful journey and I always love getting to see coaches who are going through that process with us. But another great benefit of thinking about Gallup coursework and where it gets you is not just that Gallup certification -- we do quite a bit of work to help coaches earn coaching credentials from the International Coach Federation (ICF). And I've had the pleasure of getting to watch what's happening as we're trying to describe and create a really great certification engine and stay in compliance with everything that ICF has designed for us.

And in my 11 years at Gallup, it's been a wonderful journey to see how ICF has set a "gold standard" for coaching that we learn from and we can adapt to and make sure that as we're teaching, it's a beneficial, complementary experience to the learning you want to meet that gold standard of coaching. That way, we know that the common language we're speaking truly is common, and the common mission we have syncs up and goes even further with other coaches around the world who I think are trying to do the same thing: Help individuals to make slight shifts in their days, in their lives, in their work, to really improve their experience and that of those around them.

So Angela, I'd like to hear from you a little on this first topic around earning coaching credentials from ICF. Can you talk us through what the opportunities are and what people should have in mind?

[5:33] Angela Davenport: Absolutely. And, similar to the Gallup certification, certification from ICF really helps coaches around the globe have that endorsement from the leading certification body in the world around the profession of coaching.

So we have purposefully designed our curriculum to align to the coaching competencies ICF has defined. So regardless of if you're a Gallup-Certified Coach or not, if you've taken Gallup coursework, you can use those courses and that learning time toward a certification from ICF. We do have a great recording posted out there for you, where I walk through the details of actually how you would do that and the four major requirements from ICF, and what those components are, and what Gallup courses qualify.

So I encourage you to check that out if an ICF certification is of interest to you. Just know that all of our courses are approved, and most of them are approved for core-competency hours. So for example, the Accelerated Strengths Coaching course gives you 34.5 approved hours toward the 60 hours that they require for the initial certification from ICF.

So many times, I'll receive questions from folks who aren't yet ICF certified or are not familiar with ICF, but they have a certification with someone. It might be through the Society for Human Resource Management or the HR Certification Institute or -- even, I've had a veterinarian reach out to me and say, "I have to do continuing education credits." And so if you've gone through any of our courses, we're willing and able to support providing the proof for you that you've completed those learning hours.

So you can contact us at (c = continuing; e = education; u = unit) and let us know what course you completed and what you need proof for. So if it's for ICF, SHRM, HRCI -- we have specific letters we can provide for you that show you have completed that course and the learning hours associated with it. In the veterinarian example, the certification was not through any of those, and so we provide more of a standard completion letter that verifies that indeed, the participant took the course on a particular day and confirm the learning hours, and so then the vet was able to turn around and self-report those learning hours toward the certification.

So we want to support you in your professional development journey, regardless of what certification you have, and it doesn't have to be ICF. So that's something available anytime. You can also email us at the email address you know:, and we'll make sure that gets to our team who responds and provides those completion letters.

[8:35] ML: So Angela, what if I didn't do this ahead of time and I realized maybe I took a class in the past that I now want to have credit for. Am I still eligible?

AD: Yes, perfect, and that's how it often happens. So in all of our courses that have professional credit hours approved with the course, we include in the course materials a copy of the flyer that talks about those professional credit hours. But in the example of ASC (Accelerated Strengths Coaching), I know that participants walk out of that class with lots of things to think about, and that's a minor detail that could easily be missed or overlooked or saved for later.

So we receive inquiries from coaches who say, "Hey, I went through ASC back in 2014 or 2018," whatever it is, and we can dig up those records to confirm the attendance and provide that proof of learning.

JC: I will say this, Angela. One of those specific things is our learning series. So every January, we do a learning series, and there are credits associated with that. The desired credits are those catching it live, but there are credits if you want to go back and watch those. Can you talk about how they can take advantage of the learning series?

AD: Yeah, absolutely. The learning series -- those recordings are posted, and for ICF specifically, in order to get competency hours, you have to be a part of the webinar live, so that you have the opportunity to ask a question of the instructor. And per their requirements, if you listen to the recording on demand, you don't have that opportunity, so those hours then would be resource development hours. But again, hours that work toward either an initial certification or a renewal of a certification.

So if you go back and listen to some of those recordings, you can email us again and say, "Hey, I've now listened to these four sessions from the learning series," and we'll provide you with that completion letter, based on if you attended live or on demand. And that's something if you attended the learning series live, or at least registered for it, you would have received the event evaluation, and so through that process, we provided those completion letters.

But we also realized that after the learning series, you might go back and listen to additional sessions on demand at a later time. So you can always email us and we can provide that updated documentation.

[11:07] ML: So if you're anything like me, your eyes might be spinning a little bit, and you might be thinking, "I thought this was a community update and this feels like a process update. How do I make sense of it?" I have to tell you a quick "inside baseball" story. I got certified at the entry level with ICF last year, and thought that was maybe as far as I was going to go. It was a lot of work to get there. Angela helped me through the process, but I was not even thinking about that PCC level certification.

And then Angela last week -- it was probably two weeks ago because she's on top of things -- sends me an email and says, "Hey, Maika, can you tell us what you've participated in?" And just looking backward at the things I'd already been a part of, I realized, wow, I'm over halfway to that next level of ICF certification.

Angela Davenport, Gallup Senior Learning Design Consultant, uses Gallup’s world-class research to design learning experiences that support behavioral change and productivity improvements for individuals, managers and leaders. Angela has a passion for helping leaders, managers, coaches and individuals discover, develop and apply their unique talents to reach their greatest potential.

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