25 Definitions of Coaching That Should Inspire You to Partner with a Coach Today

What is Coaching Anyway?

I love being a Coach and have a deeply held belief that Coaching can truly make a real difference in a persons life. I know it to be true because I have experienced it myself and I regularly see it take place in the lives of the Clients I work with. Take a minute to listen to the voices of others who have seen the power of Coaching realized and then – Let’s connect !!

  1. “Coaching is partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.” – International Coach Federation
  2. “A coach works with you to support forward movement, personally, professionally or organizationally”. – Christian Coaches Network
  3. “Coaching is a powerful alliance designed to forward and enhance a life-long process of human learning, effectiveness and fulfilment … Unlocking a person’s potential to maximize their own performance. It is helping them to learn rather than teaching them” – John Whitmore
  4. “A collaborative, solution focused, result-oriented and systematic process in which the coach facilitates the enhancement of work performance, life experience, self-directed learning and personal growth of the coachee” – Association for Coaching
  5. “The art of facilitating the performance, learning and development of another” – Downey
  6. “Coaching is about developing a person’s skills and knowledge so that their [job] performance improves, hopefully leading to the achievement of organisational objectives. It targets high performance and improvement at work, although it may also have an impact on an individual’s private life.” – CIPD
  7. “Coaching is about performing at your best through the individual and private assistance of someone who will challenge, stimulate and guide you to keep growing.” – Gerard O’Donovan
  8. “Coaching is a process that enables learning and development to occur and thus performance to improve. To be a successful a Coach requires a knowledge and understanding of process as well as the variety of styles, skills and techniques that are appropriate to the context in which the coaching takes place” – Eric Parsloe
  9. “Coaching can provide empowerment and support in a wide variety of ways. Whether we are seeking a change, or simply want to proceed in our lives with more focus and vigour, a good coach can make all the difference.” – tlccenter.com
  10. “Coaching encourages the deletion of “want to be”, and helps you replace it with “am” … Facilitating an individual’s search within themselves for the answers and resources they require to be limitless. – Michael Duffy
  11. “Coaching is a practice of assisting clients to determine and achieve personal goals. A trained coach will use a variety of methods, tailored to the client, to move through the process of setting and reaching goals.” – Anon
  12. “Coaching in its truest sense is giving the responsibility to the learner to help them come up with their own answers.” – Vince Lombardi
  13. “Academic coaching is a designed alliance between a coach and student for the purpose of fostering success skills in an educational environment. It is an individualized process that facilitates goal clarification and achievement. The purpose of academic coaching is to stimulate and motivate students toward their scholastic goals by providing structure, support and feedback.” – Sandy Maynard
  14. “A coach is someone who tells you: what you don’t want to hear, who has you see what you don’t want to see, so you can be who you have always known you could be.” – Tom Landry
  15. “Coaching enables you to focus your thoughts, actions and time so that you will be able to increase the quality of your life.” – Edward Fisher
  16. “Coaching is a powerful relationship for people who are making important changes in their lives.” – Co-Active Coaching
  17. “Coaching will help you to discover how to unlock the many inner resources that lie dormant and unused in you because you fail to recognize that they are there.” – Carmel Wynne
  18. “The word coaching originated in the world of sport, but now Coaching is a distinct profession, clearly different from counselling, training, mentoring, therapy, or consultancy. What is remarkable is its sheer power and versatility. Coaching will help you perform a new task, improve your performance in your chosen profession, develop a new skill or solve a problem. In more general terms, many people are turning to Coaches to find direction and balance.” – Joseph O’Connor and Andrea Lages
  19. “Coaching is the art of assisting, challenging, stimulating and supporting an individual to live a balanced lifestyle and achieve ultimate performance and potential.” – Curly Martin
  20. “Coaching is a professional service that uses proven methods of working with an individual to effectively achieve the results they want in any aspect of their professional or personal life. The purpose of coaching is to remove the obstacles that prevent individuals from achieving their objectives.” – Veronica Coope
  21. “Coaching is the art of facilitating the performance, learning and development of another.” – Myles Downey
  22. “Coaching is about performing at your best through the individual and private assistance of someone who will challenge, stimulate and guide you to keep growing.” – Gerard O’Donovan
  23. “Coaching is the art and practice of guiding a person or group from where they are to the greater competence and fulfillment that they desire.” – Gary Collins
  24. ““Coaching” can be defined as “a developmental strategy that enables people to meet their goals for improved performance, growth or career enhancement” – NASA
  25. “….a collaborative solution-focused, results-orientated and systematic process in which the coach facilitates the enhancement of work performance, life experience, self-directed learning and personal growth of the coachee.” – Anthony Grant

If you are a Coach or have experience Coaching, what would you add to this list to bring more clarity to the definition of Coaching?

Why Coaching Works – an Infographic Released by the International Coach Federation

Why Coaching Works - an Infographic

Results were derived from the ICF Global Coaching Client Study



This is a great visual representation of the benefits of Coaching to the Client. Wow!! 99 percent of respondents said they were satisfied with the overall experience. Awesome !

I know first hand how effective Coaching is because I get to see it in the lives and ministries of the Clients I work with, but it is always great to have my personal experience backed up by the supporting research !

The Results

  • 99% are satisfied with the overall experience…in fact, 96% indicated they would repeat the process.
  • There are an estimated 47,500 professional coaches across the world bringing in an annual income close to $2 Billion each year.

Increased Productivity

Professional coaching explicitly targets maximizing potential and in doing this unlocks latent sources of productivity and effectiveness. At the heart of coaching is a creative and thought-provoking process that supports individuals to confidently pursue new ideas and alternative solutions with greater resilience in the face of growing complexity and uncertainty.

  • 70% improved work performance
  • 61% improved business management
  • 57% improved time management
  • 51% improved team effectiveness

Positive People

In the face of uncertainty caused by workforce reductions and other factors, expectations remain very high. Restoring self-confidence and self-trust to face the challenges is critical to meet organizational demands.

  • 80% improved self confidence
  • 73% improved relationships
  • 72% improved communication skills
  • 67% improved life/work balance

Return on Investment

The coach-client relationship generates learning and clarity for forward action with a commitment to clear measurable outcomes. Coaching offers a good return in investment for individual clients and offers a significant return on investment for companies.

  • 68% of individuals made back at least their investment
  • 86% of companies made back at least their investment

What are you waiting for? Let’s connect!

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