With 63 percent of organizations using some form of internal coaching, according to The Conference Board Executive Coaching Survey, executive coaching certification and related coaching topics resulted in a strong demand for the recent Executive Coaching in Organizations Conference.

More than 200 attendees at the Opus College of Business conference learned about and discussed topics ranging from why coaching matters to the importance of positive psychology in feedback and how to turn insights into action.

executive coaching certification

Conference co-chair Andy Nelson and Naomi Banks perform their musical composition. (Brant Skogrand/University of St. Thomas)

The passion for executive coaching was evident from the beginning: Naomi Banks of Park Nicollet Health Services, a student in the current cohort of the Opus Graduate Certificate in Executive Coaching, and conference co-chair Andy Nelson of Target Corp., who completed the program last year, performed a musical composition they wrote about the four quadrants of focus for executive coaching.

The four quadrants, adapted from Ken Wilber and used in the Graduate Certificate in Executive Coaching, “ensure the significance, quality, impact and sustainability of coaching for both individual clients and organizations that implement coaching,” said Stacey Larsen, EdD, lead faculty/program administrator of the Executive Coaching program.

The four quadrants of focus for executive coaching

  1. Quadrant one: Focusing on individual values and beliefs, this area relates to cultivating leaders’ ability to identify their own characteristics that can help or hinder their ability to reach goals.
  2. Quadrant two: By looking at actions and results, this aspect involves helping leaders to build skills to coach their teams and others to success.
  3. Quadrant three: With a focus on group culture and norms, this area looks at how an organization’s culture impacts the success of a coaching implementation or an individual’s attempt to change.
  4. Quadrant four: Looking at systems and processes, this quadrant takes into account how they help or hinder the success of coaching in an organization.

Conference keynote speaker DeAnne Aussem, managing director and founder of the U.S. Leadership Coaching Center of Excellence at PwC, followed the musical performance with a talk on creating a coaching revolution and how coaching at all levels can create a competitive advantage for an organization.

Conference breakout sessions were next, organized in alignment with the four quadrants so attendees could intentionally choose topics.

Graduate Certificate in Executive Coaching / The Coach Approach to Management

Approximately half of the audience worked for organizations, while the other half own a coaching business. Numerous conference attendees obtained executive coaching certification through the International Coach Federation (ICF) and shared how impactful the Graduate Certificate in Executive Coaching has been on their careers. The university also offers a program called The Coach Approach to Management.

executive coaching

Michael Bungay Stanier shares insights on executive coaching with conference co-chair Amy Silvers of Target Corp. (Brant Skogrand/University of St. Thomas)

  • “I was in a pivotal moment in my career and had some fears about leaping into the coaching world with no experience. The Graduate Certificate in Executive Coaching program at St. Thomas gave me a solid foundation to confidently move forward and start my own coaching business.” – Alicia Place ’06 of Empowered Action Consulting LLC, cohort four member of the Graduate Certificate in Executive Coaching (2018)
  • “The program has helped me to learn about myself and how I can serve others through coaching. It has allowed me to coach within my organization while starting my own business as well. I use coaching on myself frequently to help get really clear on what’s important to me and to ask for what I need.” – Kellie Duerr, learning and development consultant at Target Corp.; founder and coach of Duerr Executive Coaching; cohort three member of the Graduate Certificate in Executive Coaching (2017)
  • “The St. Thomas program launched my professional full-time executive coaching practice and provides an ongoing learning community to improve and evolve my delivery of executive coaching services. Because of St. Thomas, I have a meaningful career in an area I am passionate about.” – Tom Vettel, CEO/owner of Tom Vettel Advisory, LLC; executive coach at CPI Twin Cities; cohort three member of the Graduate Certificate in Executive Coaching (2017)

Endnote speaker Michael Bungay Stanier, founder of Box of Crayons and author of The Coaching Habit, energized attendees with takeaway tools to build stronger teams and get better results.

Armed with tools, insights and a song in their heads, Executive Coaching in Organizations Conference attendees were ready to return to their organizations and clients to use executive coaching with even more impact.

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