What is the ICF
Updated: Sep 28
An article from the ICF website
The International Coach Federation (ICF) is the leading global organization dedicated to advancing the coaching profession by setting high standards, providing independent certification, and building a worldwide network of trained coaching professionals.
As the world’s largest organization of professionally trained coaches, ICF confers instant credibility upon its members. ICF is also committed to connecting member coaches with the tools and resources they need to succeed in their careers.
ICF offers the only globally recognized, independent credentialing program for coach practitioners. ICF Credentials are awarded to professional coaches who have met stringent education and experience requirements and have demonstrated a thorough understanding of the coaching competencies that set the standard in the profession. Achieving credentials through ICF signifies a coach’s commitment to integrity, understanding, mastery of coaching skills, and dedication to clients.
ICF also accredits programs that deliver coach-specific training. ICF-accredited training programs must complete a rigorous review process and demonstrate that their curriculum aligns with the ICF Core Competencies and Code of Ethics.
Today, ICF is specifically recognized among coaching professionals worldwide for:
Developing coaching core competencies
Establishing a professional code of ethics and standards
Creating an internationally recognized credentialing program
Setting guidelines through accreditation for coach-specific training programs
Providing continuous education through world-class events, Communities of Practice (CPs), and archived learning.
Coaching is an integral part of a thriving society and every ICF Member represents the highest quality of professional coaching.
ICF exists to lead the global advancement of the coaching profession.
We are committed to reliability, openness, acceptance, and congruence and consider all parts of the ICF community mutually accountable to uphold the following values:
Integrity: We uphold the highest standards both for the coaching profession and our organization.
Excellence: We set and demonstrate standards of excellence for professional coaching quality, qualification, and competence.
Collaboration: We value the social connection and community building that occurs through collaborative partnership and co-created achievement.
Respect: We are inclusive and value the diversity and richness of our global stakeholders. We put people first, without compromising standards, policies, and quality.
ICF Definition of Coaching
ICF defines coaching as partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.