September 2018

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Learn by Observation


Build coaching skills and confidence by observing others

One of the things we hear frequently is that new and growing coaches would like more opportunities to see how different coaches approach different coaching situations. In other words, they would like more opportunities for the powerful tool of observational learning. If you aren’t sure this tool can work for you, consider the following points.

Observational learning has been around for a long time, but it wasn’t until recently that experts / scholars really started paying attention to it to better understand what observational learning is and how it works. Albert Bandura, a Canadian-born psychologist, gets credit for developing and popularizing Observational Learning Theory. His new idea - learning could occur through the simple processes of observing someone else's activity. According to Bandura, learning can occur by watching others and then modeling what they do or say. There are specific steps in the process of modeling that must be followed if learning is to be successful. These steps include;

  • Attention
  • Retention
  • Reproduction
  • Motivation

These four steps used in sequence allow us to acquire the ability to engage in new behaviors or apply new skills simply through observation. Here is a little more about each step;

  1. Attention -- attention is critical to making sure you catch the details
  2. Retention -- the individual remembers what was noticed
  3. Reproduction -- the individual produces an action that is a copy of what was noticed
  4. Motivation -- the environment delivers a consequence that changes the probability the behavior will be emitted again

Appling this to learn a new coaching skill might look something like this;

  • Observer listens and watches coaches in action. The observer pays attention by listening to what is said by the coach and coachee and watching non-verbal communication that occurs between the two.
  • Observer uses proven methods to remember what was observed. This could be note taking, recording the communication and a feedback session where key points are discussed, dissected and reinforced.
  • Observer uses what was learned in the observed coaching session. This is key. The sooner the skill is used the better as we have the “forgetting curve” working against us. Work done by German psychologist Herman Ebbinghaus provides an actual mathematical representation of the exponential rate at which we lose a memory “if no attempt is made to retain it”. Roughly 70% of a memory is lost within the first 24 hours!
  • Observer receives feedback on the applied skill. Either positive or negative feedback is received, and the observer adjusts accordingly.

The tool of observation is powerful and often helps coaches get to an aha moment when it comes to tackling coaching challenges. When observing others coach, they can see the skills used and start to really 'get' the power of coaching.

You’ll have the opportunity to try out observational learning during our next webinar. We will have live coaching sessions with real coaches and real situations for you to observe. This will be a unique observational learning opportunity and a lot of fun in the process.

Attend the webinar to start the observational learning process (Attention and Retention), then go out immediately and practice what you observed to complete the process (Reproduce and Motivate) and ingrain the skills.

Read more about the webinar and register here.


Educational Webinars

Observational Learning Opportunity: 
Live Coaching Sessions, Unscripted, Unrehearsed, Real

Our next webinar features live coaching sessions and you won’t want to miss it. These sessions will be real, unscripted, unrehearsed and live. During this webinar we will have experienced coaches tackle real challenges. No scripting, no rehearsals. Sort of like the improv of coaching. You will observe coaches using their coaching skills in the moment; figuring out what the next question is and where to support the coachee as the dialog unfolds.

Developing coaching skills requires practice but it can be intimidating when first starting out or trying advanced skills. Watching other coaches in action (Observational Learning) can be a great tool to learn and a way to build confidence in your own skills.

In this webinar we will present 1 or 2 real live situations and have real coaches utilize their skills. After the coaching sessions there will be feedback and discussion – to highlight what worked and what they might have done differently.

If you are interested in observing real coaches utilize their coaching skills in real coaching situations, you’ll want to attend our next free webinar. Don’t miss this unique learning opportunity.

Who should attend?

  • New or experienced coaches who want to develop or enhance their coaching skills.
  • Coaches who want to build confidence
  • Those who could benefit by observing different approaches or techniques or get validation that you’ve got it right.

Why should you attend?

Observational learning is a powerful tool. It is proven to work. You will observe real coaches and real coaching situations. You will see coaching done on the fly – just like you experience as a coach.

What you will learn

Join us in this lively webinar to watch coaches in action and learn:

  • How coaching can happen in a short space of time and provide value
  • The different styles of coaching and the importance of being authentic
  • How coaches use the ICF Core Coaching Competencies in action
  • Skills for coaching in the moment
  • Each real coaching session will be followed by feedback and discussion to enhance the learning experience.
  • Time for Q and A

Join us for this free webinar

Wednesday September 19, 2018

11 am Pacific / 2 pm Eastern



The Business of Coaching


Building a thriving coaching business takes more than just great coaching skills. You also must know how to build a business. For many, this is the hardest part of going out on your own. If you are starting your own coaching business, check out our resources just for you.


Guide to Starting Your Coaching Business

Guide to Making it as a Coach


(visit the webinars page, then scroll down to find the title)

Strategies and Tips for Building a Successful Coaching Business

The Business of Coaching: Overcoming the Biggest Challenges

Making it as a Coach: Strategies for Success

Resources Beyond COTBx

ICF’s Business Development Series (BDS) designed to help you build, sustain and expand a successful coaching business. Now it is available through OnDemand access!

Infusionsoft Business Success Blog


Inspiration Station

“Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.” 
– John F. Kennedy

“Change is the end result of all true learning.” 
– Leo Buscaglia


Education and Training Courses


Build Core Competencies


5/5/5 Coaching Skills Training Program™
ICF Core Competency Hours: 12

If your goals include starting a coaching business or using coaching to lead within an organization, you won't want to miss our 5/5/5 Coaching Skills Training Program™.



During this course participants learn questioning, listening and framing skills. These skills help coaches guide their coachees to new insights, discoveries and breakthroughs that will help them become self-reliant problem solvers and goal achievers. This course provides in-depth learning of core coaching competencies including multiple practice and feedback sessions. Join over 18,000 participants who have gone through this transformational program. Click on the title below to learn more and register.

5/5/5 Coaching Skills Training Program™ - Starts September 25


Coaching Fundamentals™
ICF Core Competency Hours: 15

Coaching is catching on. More and more people are turning to coaching because coaching produces results. The performance of individuals, teams and organizations are being transformed when coaching skills are developed, used and become part of the culture. If you are intrigued by what is happening with coaching and want to learn core coaching skills, this fundamentals class is for you.

This is a hands-on class that includes practical techniques for trust building, focused listening, evocative questioning, planning and goal setting. The course includes practice sessions that are reviewed by a professional coach who provides feedback on coaching skills and comprehension of the competencies. You will learn the skills and gain the confidence needed to use them. Click on the course name to learn more and register.

Coaching Fundamentals™ - Starts October 11


Advance Your Skills



Personal Groundwork for Coaching™
ICF Core Competency Hours: 20

Are you looking to enhance your coaching skills or take your coaching to the next level? Or maybe you need to obtain CCE credits to renew your ICF credential or add to your coach specific training hours. If any of these apply, check out our Personal Groundwork for Coaching™.

In this course you will learn advanced coaching skills to help highlight and explore areas that are often at the source of where a coachee becomes stuck, self-defeating or demotivated. You will also learn how to use the accompanying Personal Groundwork for Coaching Assessment™ Workbook, a widely-used tool to help coaches move their clients past daily symptoms and into the deeper source of what is getting in their way and preventing them from reaching their goals.

This is a hands-on class. Each week you will work (outside of the classroom) with a different learning partner to coach one another around the concepts covered in the class. Click on the course name to learn more and register.

Personal Groundwork for Coaching™ - starts September 10


Ace the ICF CKA Exam


ICF Coach Knowledge Assessment Prep Class
ICF Core Competency Hours: 9

This course is designed to prepare coaches for the ICF Coach Knowledge Assessment exam which must be successfully completed prior to receiving the International Coach Federation (ICF) ACC Credential.



The course covers ICF Core Competencies and Ethics and Standards plus test taking strategies. This prep class will present several questions each week that mimic the multiple-choice questions you will be asked to answer in the CKA exam. Click the course link below to learn more and register.

ICF CKA Prep Class – Starts September 17


Take the Fast Track to Your ICF Credential


Fast Track to ICF Credential
Fulfils the educational requirements for obtaining the ICF ACC credential

Develop the skills and set yourself apart by jumping on the Fast Track. Coaching is becoming more and more competitive and yet many coaches have no credential and minimal training. One of the best ways to set yourself apart is to complete the training and earn a coaching credential.

But pursuing your ICF Credential is a big step and commitment. That is why we created the Fast Track to ICF Credential - to streamline the process and make it as convenient as possible.

Benefits of the Fast Track to ICF Credential include;

 FAST TRACK: Takes only 6 months to complete (other programs may take as long as 18 months).

 ROBUST, DISTANCE-BASED LEARNING: We use cutting-edge technology to create an in-person, interactive classroom experience while you participate remotely.

 TOP-NOTCH EDUCATION AND TRAINING: You get world-class instruction from expert coaches with experience in both coaching and teaching.

 FLEXIBLE SCHEDULE: We offer day and evening classes for your convenience, and new classes start throughout the year.

 AFFORDABLE: This program is priced to fit into your budget. Save $495 US / $595 CDN when you register for the package option. Don’t need the package option? You also have the choice of taking separate modules a la carte. We even have a payment plan.

Our next program (day classes) starts September 25. Click here to view the schedule


Become a Coaching Educator


Train the Trainer for 5/5/5 Coaching Skills Training Program™
ICF Core Competency Hours: 12

You've done the training, developed your coaching skills and now you are ready to leverage your expertise. But where do you go from here? If you want to expand your reach, add a new tool to your toolkit and a new source of revenue, this course may be just what you are looking for.



This course prepares you to become licensed to deliver the 5/5/5 Coaching Skills Training Program™. As you go through the course you will gain in-depth knowledge of advanced coaching skills and learn to use your skills in a new and expanded role.

Train the Trainer for 5/5/5 Coaching Skills Program™ – Starts October 2


Coaching Resources

We offer many resources on a wide variety of topics to support coaches at all levels. On our website, you can find blog articles, educational videos, webinar recordings and more under Coaching Resources. We are continually updating this section so check back often.



To make it easier to find what you are looking for we’ve organized the most popular resources by topic. G = Guide and W = Webinar.


The Business of Coaching

Coaching Skills

Leveraging your Coaching Skills

Coaching in Healthcare

Coaching in Organizations


Did you know?

COTBx offers Immersive Coaching Skills Development Programs 
for Organizations

These programs, delivered specifically for your organization, are designed to accelerate learning and uptake. Programs are offered in on-site, virtual and blended formats. Contact us to learn more.




If you have questions about coaching, certification, courses or more, we'd love to hear from you. Click here to schedule 1:1 time with Alison Hendren, CEO and Founder, or fill out our contact form!



We would love to connect with you! Reach out to our team here or call Toll Free, 
1-888-4A-COACH (1-888-422-6224).


Copyright ® 2017, All rights reserved.

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