EthicalCoach is a movement, building bridges that connect executive coaching to charities and nonprofit organizations addressing the greatest humanitarian and environmental challenges of our time as outlined in the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Recognizing that these global challenges affect us all, EthicalCoach reaches around the world to engage coaches and nonprofit organizations. Created by Ben Croft, Founder and CEO of WBECS (World Business & Executive Coach Summit), EthicalCoach is delivering resources and tools to develop leadership capacity that will, in turn, enable some 64 million additional children to be supported over the next ten years.
Regardless of their successes, most, if not all, nonprofits will admit to an ongoing gap between what they achieve and what is required on a global scale. There is the need, not only for more resources, but to have current, often limited resources achieve a lot more, in a shorter time. Nonprofits have a deep commitment and understanding of the needs of the communities they serve. Executive coaches excel at building the sustainable internal capacity of individuals and organizations to make their endeavors stronger, more resilient, more effective and more measurably successful. EthicalCoach is the philanthropic effort of coaches around the world, to accelerate and escalate the impact of nonprofits by contributing what they know best, top quality coaching.
Through his work in founding and leading the World Business & Executive Coach Summit (WBECS ), Ben Croft saw firsthand the contribution made by coaching to the success of major international organizations as well as Fortune 500 companies. It was clear that the value of coaching was well-established among senior executives who work with coaching experts such as Marshall Goldsmith, Judith Glaser, David Clutterbuck, and others on a regular basis. He began imagining the potential of coaching to promote equality and protect the planet. With access to a pool of thousands of coaches from around the world, Ben recognized that he was uniquely positioned to effect the linkage of the top coaches in the world to the nonprofit leaders whose organizations are tackling major global challenges.
EthicalCoach has been set up to make the world a better place by connecting nonprofit organizations with executive coaches. More specifically, EthicalCoach will work with leaders of nonprofit organizations who are supporting children and their families by tackling some of the most pressing global issues as outlined in the UN Sustainable Development Goals (for example, education, poverty, health, food, clean water and inequalities). The goal for each nonprofit leader receiving coaching is to grow his or her own leadership capability so as to be able to strengthen his/her organization to support, at minimum, a further 100 children a year; with the overall goal being to provide an additional approximately 64 million children with support within the next ten years.
Created to reflect the highest level of coaching, the term “EthicalCoach” will be earned by a select group of professional coaches globally as a marker of their ongoing excellence and attainment of the highest recognized professional standards as well as their commitment to personal and professional development, and to creating a more just, equitable and inclusive world. The title of EthicalCoach is envisioned to reflect, in addition to expertise and a willingness to maintain the highest levels of integrity and professionalism in coaching, a readiness to deploy that expertise when it is needed most, with or without compensation. Think of the term “EthicalCoach” as the coaching equivalent of the the Hippocratic oath for medical professionals.
On September 25th 2015, 193 world leaders unanimously adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The outcome is a set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (UN-SDGs) that outline a transformative and integrated approach to a just, fair and sustainable world in which no one is left behind. The UN-SDGs with the potential to have the most immediate impact on the lives of children include those related to: education, health, food, clean water and sanitation, inequality, and gender equality.
The visionary behind EthicalCoach, Ben Croft, Founder and CEO of WBECS (World Business & Executive Coach Summit), is the current major funder of this initiative. Additional support has been provided by such leading organizations as Harvard Medical School, McLean Hospital Affiliate, Institute of Coaching, Forbes Magazine, The International Association of Coaching and the Central Florida Chapter of the International Coach Federation.
All coaching support provided to nonprofit organizations in Ethiopia will be free of a monetary charge since the inaugural team of Ethiopia coaches is offering its services pro-bono. Rather, those attending the Summit and receiving ongoing coaching will be expected to commit both to applying the learnings personally and to sharing them with others. Moving forward, it is expected that the results of this pilot intervention in Ethiopia will encourage the funding of EthicalCoach’s growth by a range of different financial sponsors.
EthicalCoach’s formal base is as part of the World Business & Executive Coach Summit (WBECS) organization in the United Kingdom. In practice, EthicalCoach is a movement comprised of volunteers on five continents working together across some fourteen time zones. Founder, Ben Croft, is resident in Croatia but is to be located on an airplane many weeks of the year, delivering presentations and spreading the word by meeting with people around the globe.
The EthicalCoach journey begins in Ethiopia with the Ethiopian NGO Leadership Coaching Summit which will be held in Addis Ababa on October 4-5, 2018. The Summit will bring together ~10 world-class and ~10 local coaches with 400 nonprofit leaders from organizations addressing the UN Sustainable Development Goals, specifically focusing on increasing the number of children that are supported in the country.
Workshop sessions will be designed to address the unique challenges of Ethiopian NGO leaders. Subsequent to the Summit, ten to twenty organizations will be awarded a full year of coaching following the Summit.
Ethiopia is home to incredible beauty and diversity and also hardship and challenges given the drought conditions, the regional instability and the ongoing influx of refugees. What makes Ethiopia attractive as a pilot site is its growing economy and a government committed to Ethiopia having a functioning economic and physical infrastructure. Ethiopia is thus part of Africa but not of Africa given its unique cultural and social history and economic trajectory. Lessons learned in this environment are expected to be more transferable internationally. Further, Ethiopia is the regional or continental home to many of the largest international NGOs. and is thus well connected to leverage change to other countries.
Weighing up all these factors and following an exploratory visit in April, 2017, EthicalCoach founder, Ben Croft, felt compelled to begin the journey in Ethiopia having seen firsthand the challenges and having received assurances from nonprofit leaders both as to the need for as well as their support for this type of intervention.
The EthicalCoach vision is to stimulate new partnerships around the world. The experience of bringing together international and local coaches with nonprofit organizations in Addis Ababa as part of the Ethiopian NGO Leadership Coaching Summit, as well as the ongoing resources that will be made available, will result in extended leadership capacity in the NGO sector. In addition, the planned involvement of multiple sectors in the delivery of the Summit – public, private, philanthropic and voluntary – will build the capacity locally to continue the momentum.
Our journey will take us around the world, but it all begins in Ethiopia. The pilot will be rigorously monitored and evaluated and given the results and learnings, decisions will be made as to how best to proceed. Interest has been expressed by a number of different countries to be the next site, including the US, India and Vietnam. Also under consideration is the development of an automated interface that will match NGO leader applicants with available EthicalCoaches, allowing the benefits to be realized much more quickly and in more geographic areas.
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