ICF Code of EthicsNovember 3, 2023 2023-11-26 14:14
ICF Code of Ethics
ICF Code of Ethics
The ICF Code of Ethics describes the core values of the International Coaching Federation (ICF Core Values), and ethical principles and ethical standards of behavior for all ICF Professionals (see definitions). Meeting these ICF ethical standards of behavior is the first of the ICF core coaching competencies (ICF Core Competencies). That is “Demonstrates ethical practice: understands and consistently applies coaching ethics and standards.”
The ICF Code of Ethics serves to uphold the integrity of ICF and the global coaching profession by:
Setting standards of conduct consistent with ICF core values and ethical principles.
Guiding ethical reflection, education, and decision-making
Adjudicating and preserving ICF coach standards through the ICF Ethical Conduct Review (ECR) process
Providing the basis for ICF ethics training in ICF-accredited programs
The ICF Code of Ethics applies when ICF Professionals represent themselves as such, in any kind of coaching-related interaction. This is regardless of whether a coaching Relationship (see definitions) has been established. This Code articulates the ethical obligations of ICF Professionals who are acting in their different roles as coach, coach supervisor, mentor coach, trainer or student coach-in-training, or serving in an ICF Leadership role, as well as Support Personnel (see definitions).
Although the Ethical Conduct Review (ECR) process is only applicable to ICF Professionals, as is the Pledge, the ICF Staff are also committed to ethical conduct and the Core Values and Ethical Principles that underpin this ICF code of ethics.
The challenge of working ethically means that members will inevitably encounter situations that require responses to unexpected issues, resolution of dilemmas and solutions to problems. This Code of Ethics is intended to assist those persons subject to the Code by directing them to the variety of ethical factors that may need to be taken into consideration and helping to identify alternative ways of approaching ethical behavior.
ICF Professionals who accept the Code of Ethics strive to be ethical, even when doing so involves making difficult decisions or acting courageously.
“Client”—the individual or team/group being coached, the coach being mentored or supervised, or the coach or the student coach being trained.
“Coaching”— partnering with Clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.
“Coaching Relationship”—a relationship that is established by the ICF Professional and the Client(s)/Sponsor(s) under an agreement or a contract that defines the responsibilities and expectations of each party.
“Code”—ICF Code of Ethics
“Confidentiality”—protection of any information obtained around the coaching engagement unless consent to release is given.
“Conflict of Interest”—a situation in which an ICF Professional is involved in multiple interests where serving one interest could work against or be in conflict with another. This could be financial, personal or otherwise.
“Equality”—a situation in which all people experience inclusion, access to resources and opportunity, regardless of their race, ethnicity, national origin, color, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, religion, immigration status, mental or physical disability, and other areas of human difference.
“ICF Professional”—individuals who represent themselves as an ICF Member or ICF Credential-holder, in roles including but not limited to Coach, Coach Supervisor, Mentor Coach, Coach Trainer, and Student of Coaching
“ICF Staff”— the ICF support personnel who are contracted by the managing company that provides professional management and administrative services on behalf of ICF.
“Internal Coach”— an individual who is employed within an organization and coaches either part-time or full-time the employees of that organization.
“Sponsor”—the entity (including its representatives) paying for and/or arranging or defining the coaching services to be provided.
“Support Personnel”—the people who work for ICF Professionals in support of their Clients.
“Systemic equality”—gender equality, race equality and other forms of equality that are institutionalized in the ethics, core values, policies, structures, and cultures of communities, organizations, nations and society.
Core Values & Ethical Principals
The ICF Code of Ethics is based on the ICF Core Values (link) and the actions that flow from them. All values are equally important and support one another. These values are aspirational and should be used as a way to understand and interpret the standards. All ICF Professionals are expected to showcase and propagate these Values in all their interactions.
ICF Core Values
Professionalism: A commitment to a coaching mindset and professional quality that encompass responsibility, respect, integrity, competence and excellence.
Collaboration: A commitment to develop social connection and community building.
Humanity: A commitment to being humane, kind, compassionate and respectful towards others.
Equity: A commitment to use a coaching mindset to explore and understand the needs of others so I can practice equitable processes at all times that create equality for all.