International Coach Federation

Founded in 1992, the International Coach Federation is the professional association of personal and business coaches that seeks to preserve the integrity of coaching around the globe. The ICF is the largest non-profit professional association of personal and business coaches worldwide with more than 16,000 members in 100 countries.

The ICF helps people find the coach most suitable for their needs through their International Coach Referral Service. It supports and fosters development of the coaching profession; it has programs to maintain and upgrade the standards of the profession; it conducts a certification program that is the gold standard for coaches worldwide; and it conducts the world's premier conference and other educational events for coaches.
It is the immediate goal of the ICF to become a strong and unified voice for the coaching profession and provide ever increasing value for its members. To this end, the ICF has developed and implemented a comprehensive credentialing program to:

  • Strengthen the coaching profession and build a solid foundation of proactive self-regulation.
  • Establish industry regulations and minimum standards for coaches and coach training agencies.
  • Assure the public that participating coaches and coach training agencies meet or exceed established industry standards.

The ICF has accredited the training programs of eight institutions that meet ICF standards for certifying professional coaches. True North Coaching follows the co-active coaching model designed by the The Coaches Training Institute.

Professional coaching and the ICF are experiencing exponential growth and national press exposure. The proliferation of those joining the ranks as coaches is both remarkable and a testament to the tremendous value and potential of professional coaching.

To date, over 900 coaches have received their Professional Certified Coach (PCC) or Master Certified Coach (MCC) designations from the ICF. With chapters across the U.S. and in numerous other countries, the ICF is a non-profit organization with board members, staff, volunteers and members located all over the world. ICF is actively involved in researching and developing programs that will serve coaches and their clients.


The International Coach Federation adheres to a form of coaching that views the client as the expert in his/her personal and/or professional life and believes that every client is creative, resourceful, and whole.

Standing on this foundation, the coach's responsibility is to:

  • Discover, clarify, and align with what the client wants to achieve
  • Encourage client self-discovery
  • Elicit client-generated solutions and strategies
  • Hold the client as responsible and accountable