Membership Pro Tip: A Place to Talk About Ethics

Providing members with easy, accessible ways to talk about ethics has lots of unexpected and mutually beneficial advantages.

Giving members opportunities to discuss ethical issues in their industry increases engagement, enriches the member experience, expands their networking opportunities, and enhances their professional credibility.

How Does It Work?

Making a space for members to discuss ethics can be as simple as creating a channel on a communications platform like Slack, Basecamp, or LinkedIn. The idea is to establish a place that’s designated for ongoing ethics conversations.

The International Coaching Federation has several resources to help members learn and talk about ethics issues in the industry, including the ICF Ethics Hotline and monthly Ethics Water Cooler Conversation, which is an informal discussion on Zoom that is free and open to anyone (both ICF members and nonmembers).

“It’s an opportunity to discuss and be together ‘in person’ on an internet connection to talk about things they are going through and bounce ideas off each other,” said ICF’s Director of Ethics, Compliance, and Culture Kristin Kelly.

Why Is It Effective?

Giving members a space to discuss real-life ethical dilemmas provides room for conversational debate and contemplation. “That’s where our members are learning the ethics of what it means to be a coach and how they should show up in their coaching partnerships,” Kelly said. “In addition, it really brings our code of ethics to life front and center.”

What’s the Benefit?

“Continuing to find ways to actively engage our members in these ongoing ethical conversations has been the best way to impart real and lasting knowledge around ethics,” Kelly said. And any member who has ethics top of mind will stand out from their competitors. “When clients choose to work with ICF’s coaches, they can be confident that they are working with an ethical professional,” Kelly said. “There’s nothing more valuable than that.”

Do you have a membership pro tip? Please share in the comments or send me an email.

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Lisa Boylan

By Lisa Boylan

Lisa Boylan is a senior editor of Associations Now. MORE

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