1. Positive psychology coaches can clearly articulate what is and is not positive psychology coaching.
2. Positive psychology coaches never claim that non-coaching services are coaching. Non-coaching services include but are not limited to consulting, training, seminar leading, counseling, therapy, internet marketing, sales, bill collection; and financial, legal, health, or spiritual advice.
3. Positive psychology coaches are trained in positive psychology and professional coaching skills.
4. Positive psychology coaches earn reputable coach certifications, and they keep their credentials current. As time passes, they continue to upgrade their coaching skills by working toward more advanced certifications.
5. Positive psychology coaches are life-long learners who stay abreast of new practices in coaching and new research in related fields, including any other areas in which they claim expertise, through additional trainings and seminars, formal degree programs, experiential learning, books, and other learning modes and media.
6. Positive psychology coaches consistently practice self-compassion and self-care, so they can give their best to their clients.
7. Positive psychology coaches work consistently to strengthen their personal growth, because it is a necessity for effective coaching.
8. Positive psychology coaches hire and work with coaches of their own throughout their careers, because coaching enhances the coach’s personal growth, reminds the coach what it is like to be a client, and provides the coach with ideas for upgrading their own skills and services.
9. Positive psychology coaches store confidential client records securely using locks, encryption, firewalls, etc. and save client records for at least ten years.
10. Positive psychology coaches avoid confusing or misleading others about the nature of positive psychology coaching, or the nature of the services they offer, whether through conversations, writings, marketing, or any other format.
11. Positive psychology coaches, who offer other types of professional services, take care to describe the differences between those services to clients and potential clients and to keep those services separate from coaching by, for instance, setting up separate sessions for them.
12. Positive psychology coaches are self-aware. They take appropriate care of their mental, emotional, and physical well-being and seek professional help, as needed. They communicate to their clients when they are not able to coach at their best and reschedule, or if needed, terminate their coaching relationships when they are not at their best.
13. Positive psychology coaches respect science. That respect is reflected in their speech and actions even when they are not coaching.
14. Positive psychology coaches know that they model pro-social behavior for others and are aware of how their choices and behaviors can influence the choices and behaviors of others.
15. Positive psychology coaches understand the power of positive emotions, thoughts, and language and leverage positivity in their own lives and for the benefit of their clients. However, they also understand the upward limits of healthy positivity.
16. Positive psychology coaches do not diagnose, nor do they prescribe to their clients.
17. Professional coaches who employ assistants, other coaches, marketing personnel, etc., require those others to abide by these same best practices while in their employ.
1. Positive psychology coaches treat clients and customers with unconditional respect and work to eliminate personal biases across all dimensions of diversity. They learn about their clients’ backgrounds to support client development.
2. Positive psychology coaches collaborate with their clients to understand organizational expectations, systems, structures, and cultural dynamics that may impact their client relationships.
3. Positive psychology coaches strive to develop or enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) competency in their coaching practice. Such competency enables them to better support DEI related initiatives of their clients.
1. Positive psychology coaches transparently communicate their coach training, experience, and credentialing. They neither exaggerate nor diminish their qualifications and abilities.
2. Positive psychology coaches do not use money-back guarantees to entice clients to work with them, because such guarantees can give clients a false sense that they have nothing to lose.
3. Positive psychology coaches always reveal whether they may receive payment in exchange for recommending the products or services of others’, whether payment is via cash, services, or some other type of trade.
4. Positive psychology coaches do not sell during coaching sessions. They schedule separate conversations to discuss additional products or services that clients may want, and they are transparent about the nature of those conversations.
5. Positive psychology coaches use marketing tools such as email, social media, webinars, live networking, etc., to build relationships with people. They do not treat potential clients as mere numbers. The former attracts clients and leads to coaching success, while the latter erodes trust.
1. Positive psychology coaches only work with clients they honestly believe in.
2. Positive psychology coaches understand that trust and respect are the foundations of harmonious relationships, especially coaching relationships. They take care to maintain that trust and respect, and immediately address it, if it becomes impaired.
3. Positive psychology coaches always defer to their clients’ deeply held desires and never assume that they know “what is best” for them.
4. Positive psychology coaches fully inform their clients about the services and fees to expect from coaching, before paid coaching commences, and they take care to deliver what they promise.
5. If a positive psychology coach receives a complaint from a coaching client, they do their best to make it right, as soon as possible. This may mean clearer communication, stronger coaching, or the termination of the coaching relationship.
6. Positive psychology coaches always use written coaching agreements with coaching clients, including pro bono clients. Their agreements describe in detail what the client can expect and include a link to this ethical code.
7. Positive psychology coaches who become unavailable to coach their clients for one month or longer, for any reason, refund their clients’ fees for any unused coaching sessions and attempt, if possible, to assist their clients to find another positive psychology coach.
8. Positive psychology coaches never share personal information about their coaching clients, without getting specific written approval from the clients, first.
9. Positive psychology coaches are not advisors but they may share information about positive psychology interventions with their clients that the clients may choose to try.
10. Positive psychology coaches refer their clients to other professionals whenever the client appears to need help in areas for which the coach is not qualified. This may include other coaches, counselors or psychotherapists, financial advisors, health professionals, etc.
11. Positive psychology coaches never mix multiple relationships with paid client relationships. These include romantic relationships, business partnerships, and any other type of relationship that could cause even the appearance of a conflict of interest.
12. Positive psychology coaches never put profits above client results.
13. Positive psychology coaches never use the intellectual property of others without permission. They honor copyright and trademark laws. They create their own material or get the appropriate licenses and permissions to use the work of others, whom they cite within their materials.