International Coaching Week
May 7 — 13, 2018 | Celebrating 20 years
In 1999 I created International Coaching Week. Its purpose is to provide a week each year to educate the public about the value of working with a personal, business or executive coach and to provide an opportunity for coaches and their clients to acknowledge the results and progress made through the coaching process. Coaches offer a variety of pro bono services in their communities during the week, including free coaching sessions, lectures and workshops.
In an interview I said, “I am really pleased that so many coaches are participating in International Coaching Week. It is very gratifying to know that so many people are offering pro bono coaching and other community events in such a heartfelt way. When I started National Coaching Week (which later became International Coaching Week) in 1999, I had no idea that it would soon take on a life of its own. I really am delighted that this Week is becoming a focal point for both publicizing coaching worldwide and providing the public with a sense of the possibilities that coaching offers.”
History of International Coaching Week
I created International Coaching Week in 1999 as a way to promote the profession of coaching. Originally called National Personal and Business Coaching Week, I listed it in “Chase’s Calendar of Events” (a major PR tool) and it was held the first week of February, 1999.
In 2000 Canadian coaches wanted to participate, so I changed the name to International Personal and Business Coaching Week; in 2000 the International Coach Federation (ICF) helped publicize the week by mentioning it in their newsletter and also by sending special Coaching Week email blasts to members and chapters.
In 2001 the ICF prepared a sample press release for coaches to customize and use to publicize their participation in Coaching Week, and also gave its members a list of suggested events (e.g., pro bono coaching, free teleclasses, etc.) to inspire them to participate in their own way. Also in 2001, Thomas Leonard picked up the idea and ran with it. He created a Coaching Week page on his Coachville website, designed a logo, and offered to post coaches’ press releases and listings of Coaching Week events on his site.
In 2002 Thomas created a CoachingWeek.com website, and invited coaches to post their events on it. I continued to network with the ICF, Coachville and various coaches to promote the week. Thomas liked the idea that Coaching Week belonged to no one particular individual or organization. As he wrote me on August 2, 2002, “I like your non-owned approach to CW; that way everyone can say they are a sponsor.”
Since 2002, International Coaching Week has gained tremendous momentum. It is now celebrated worldwide, with events held in such disparate countries as Kenya, Uzbekistan and India.