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Professional Certificate
Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance

In association with

Philosophy IB logo

Two professionals conversing
ACTP logo; Accredited Coach Training Program International Coach Federation


Today’s organizational leaders must be able to motivate and engage employees to reach their highest levels of performance. Leadership coaching is one of the most powerful tools that a leader has to achieve these results.

The Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance program offered through Philosophy IB and accredited by the International Coach Federation (ICF) in 2012 is a cohort certificate program.

This program is intended for practitioners who want to develop knowledge and skills and practice coaching in realistic leadership scenarios. The program consists of five course modules, all focusing on leadership coaching within the context of an organization. Our curriculum is designed to meet the ICF core competencies. Modules include: Leadership Coaching Foundation (3 days); Creating Awareness (2 days); Language and Emotion (2 days); Performance and Accountability (2 days); and The Process and Business of Coaching (3 days). As this is a cohort program, you are required to complete all course modules, assigned course work, and a final exam to earn your certificate.


Please submit the following with your method of payment:

Please see the Registration Information section below for detailed information.

September 21-December 16, 2015 (Monday-Wednesday)
  • Time: 8:30 AM-4:30 PM
  • Location: ARL     Status: Open

  • Fall 2015 Cohort Schedule
    • Course Module I– Leadership Coaching Foundations
      September 21, 22, 23
    • Course Module II– Creating Awareness
      October 13, 14
    • Course Module III– Language and Emotion
      November 2, 3
    • Course Module IV– Performance and Accountability
      November 23, 24
    • Course Module V– The Process and Business of Coaching
      December 14, 15, 16


    Each seminar is recommended for:
  • 13.20 CEUs
  • 132 Contact Hours
  • Contact Info.
  • Online contact form
  • Address:
      George Mason University
    Office of Continuing Professional Education
      3351 Fairfax Drive, Suite 448, MS 2G2
      Arlington, VA 22201
  • Telephone: 703-993-2109
  • Fax: 703-993-2121

  • This program's content and curriculum design is modeled after the four pillars of adult learning:

    1. Conceptualization of concepts regarding coaching
    2. Experimentation with a coaching concept in a real world setting
    3. Reflection regarding the experiment and the insights achieved
    4. Integration of the learning into self with ways to access and leverage it in future interactions

    Our Approach
    This program emphasizes not only the learning of critical coaching skills, but their application to organizational challenges that leaders face. Our program was designed with the specific goal of enabling all participants to understand and deliver an end-to-end coaching process with their clients, enabling leaders to reach their full potential, while delivering tangible and important results to the organizations they serve. The instructors' backgrounds reflect this orientation as they all have a powerful blend of business/organizational and coaching experience.

    The Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance program will be held on the Arlington Campus of George Mason University.

    Founder’s Hall
    3351 Fairfax Drive
    Arlington, VA 22201

    Photo of Founder's Hall

    Coaching Alumni Network
    Graduates of the Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance program can join the George Mason coaching alumni network. Upon completion of the program, alumni can join this active community of coaching professionals for networking and continuing education opportunities.

    How It Works.

    The Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance program offered through Philosophy IB, was launched at George Mason launched in 2010 and was accredited by the ICF in 2012. It is recognized by the ICF as offering a minimum of 132 hours of coach-specific training, training on all ICF Core Competencies and the ICF Code of Ethics, a minimum of 6 observed coaching sessions with an experienced coach, and a comprehensive final exam that evaluates a student's coaching competency.

    The highly-participatory and interactive program includes classroom-based learning, practice coaching sessions, teleconferences, and independent reading. Over the course of 5 months, program participants progress through 5 learning modules. Participants who complete the program are awarded a professional certificate and meet all the requirements for one of two ICF certifications: Associate Certified Coach (ACC) and Professional Certified Coach (PCC).

    Module 1

    Leadership Coaching Foundations

    Participants explore foundational coaching concepts and their relationship to adult learning theory.
    Learn More
    Module 2

    Creating Awareness

    Participants discover how to be fully present, build trust, and establish authenticity with clients.
    Learn More
    Module 3

    Language and Emotion

    Participants learn how to use language and emotions to create purposeful conversations with clients.
    Learn More
    Module 4

    Performance and Accountability

    Participants learn to apply their newfound coaching skills to hold clients accountable and achieve their performance goals.
    Learn More
    Module 5

    The Process & Business of Coaching

    Participants discuss the business of coaching and develop their own personal coaching brand.
    Learn More

    Assigned reading, journaling, reflection, web-based assessments (20 hours)


    Instructor-led, face-to
    -face sessions (12 days total)


    Instructor-led, 1-hour, conference calls(8 sessions total)

    Coaching Sessions

    Recorded 30-min. practice 1-on-1 coaching sessions reviewed by instructors (6 total)

    Final Exam

    Written and oral ICF certification exam



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    Our certificate program is highly integrated on three levels. It provides the opportunity for you to become knowledgeable in the theories and concepts relevant to the profession of coaching. It also focuses on developing your skills to ensure you are proficient in the process of coaching. In addition, the program emphasizes your personal development, believing that an acute and accurate sense of self is the foundation upon which all good coaching emerges.

    Understanding underlying dynamics as a coach is a major focus of the George Mason program. It provides the opportunity for you to
    • Enhance your coaching leadership skills through deeper self-awareness
    • Apply leadership coaching within the context of organizations
    • Develop an organized and logical coaching process
    • Improve coaching effectiveness through increased emotional intelligence
    • Facilitate longer term and sustainable behavioral change
    • Gain an understanding of the ethical issues surrounding coaching and how to be an ethical coach
    • Enhance relationship management and trust building skills
    • Become skillful at conducting difficult conversations
    • Develop effective communication skills to facilitate organizational performance
    • Network and form lasting relationships with a diverse and talented group of individuals
    • Learn under the guidance of International Coach Federation (ICF) coaches

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    A list of required reading will be provided one month prior to the cohort start date. Textbook fees are in addition to the program enrollment fee.

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    • Executives who seek to develop an increased emotional intelligence to better engage employees for improved organizational performance
    • Managers who wish to acquire organizational coaching skills to enhance their leadership capabilities
    • Individuals who are interested in becoming external coaches and who have had some experience working with leaders in organizations
    • Current organizational coaches and consultants interested in pursuing certification from the ICF. 
    • Seasoned professionals with experience in related fields such as human resources or consulting
    • Organizational Development (OD) practitioners who see coaching as an important competency within their organization
      The Professional Certificate in Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance

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    • Seven years of organizational experience
    • Minimum bachelor’s degree
    • Time to make the commitment

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    For consideration in an upcoming cohort of the Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance Certificate Program, please submit the following items with your registration and method of payment:

    • A 750-1,000 word compelling narrative that answers the question, “Why coaching and why this program?”
    • Two letters of recommendation
    • Resume that demonstrates a minimum of seven years of organizational experience and minimum of a bachelor’s degree

    Registration and required information is accepted via mail, fax, or walk-in. For information, call 703-993-2109.

    • Mail:
      George Mason University
      Office of Continuing Professional Education
      3351 Fairfax Drive, Suite 448, MS 2G2
      Arlington, VA 22201
      Attn: Rosalynn Dhramapitaksook
    • Fax:
      Attn: Rosalynn Dhramapitaksook
    • Walk-in:
      George Mason University
      Founders Hall, Suite 448
      8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
    • Class Size Limited– Please note that each cohort is limited to a maximum of 30 participants. Previous cohorts have reached maximum registrations. Therefore you are encouraged to register early.

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    This cohort certificate program consists of five course modules. In order to receive a George Mason University Certification of Completion, and 13.2 CEUs, participants must successfully complete all five learning course modules and have a 100% attendance record; achieve a satisfactory rating in a final observed coaching session; and receive a satisfactory grade on the final exam.

    *Please recognize that the distance learning components which are regularly scheduled teleconference calls and taped coaching sessions are commitments between classroom course modules. Distance learning is a mandatory component of the program in order to produce well trained coaches and meet the ICF requirements.

    Sample George Mason University Certificate of Completion

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    ACTP, Accredited Coach Training Program, International Coach Federation

    The Leadership Coaching program has been approved by the ICF as an Accredited Coach Training Program (ACTP). The ACTP accreditation allows all participants of the program to apply for one of two credentials offered through the ICF using the ACTP application method. The first credential is the Associate Certified Coach (ACC) and the second is the Professional Certified Coach (PCC). The program is recognized by the ICF as offering a minimum of 132 hours of coach-specific training, training on all ICF Core Competencies and the ICF Code of Ethics, a minimum of six observed-coaching sessions with an experienced coach and a comprehensive final exam that evaluates a student's coaching competency.

    For more information on the requirements of the ACTP application method, please visit the ICF website:

    Note: Past participants of the Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance Certificate Program who received a Certificate of Completion are now eligible to apply for their credentialing using the ACTP application method. If you need assistance, please contact Mazher Ahmad at

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    Photo of Kaveh Naficy

    Kaveh Naficy, is the founding partner of Philosophy IB, a management consulting firm focused on the execution of business strategy, and has over 20 years of coaching experience. He brings significant leadership and organizational development experience as a management consultant, corporate executive, and entrepreneur to his coaching practice. Kaveh's emphasis is on developing leaders in dynamic and changing environments by co-developing objectives, leveraging strengths, and removing obstacles to reach client objectives and organizational outcomes. His clients include executives from global organizations such as Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Nokia, BASF, DuPont, and Pfizer.

    Kaveh received his BA from Baker University, a master’s degree in labor relations from Cornell University and an MBA from Boston College. He has completed coaching programs at New Ventures West and Georgetown University and is certified by the International Coach Federation. He is a certified practitioner in Emotional and Social Competency Inventory (ESCI), Insights Discovery and TTI Success Insights. Kaveh manages the coaching program at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. He is a frequently invited speaker on executive coaching and the author of the following: The Leadership Crescendo, an autobiographical blog on leadership effectiveness; How Executive Coaching can Fuel Professional and Personal Growth, published in the OD Practitioner; Executive Coaching: Building the Path for Personal Growth, published by the Darden School at the University of Virginia; and The Four Coachable Sins of Leaders, published by the Human Resource Executive Online Magazine. Kaveh has also been featured on Fast Company’s 30 second MBA and in an article titled Uncovering Inner Riches in the Executive Connections Magazine.

    The Leadership Crescendo Blog written by Kaveh Naficy

    Photo of Christopher Brookfield

    Christopher Brookfield, is a principal at Philosophy IB, a management consulting firm focused on the execution of business strategy, and has over 15 years of coaching experience. A former CEO, Chris is at home in the public and private sectors. He is familiar with the pressures of leading, both internally and externally. Chris’ clients say he brings intense curiosity, intellect, and heart to their sessions. His coaching aim is to build leadership capacity in executives and transfer that capacity into results for the organization. His clients include executives from organizations such as Novartis, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Northrop Grumman, Johnson & Johnson, Capital One, the Department of Defense, and others.

    Chris holds a BA in psychology from Duke University and an MBA from Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia. Chris was trained and certified through the Coaches Training Institute (CTI), one of the oldest and most rigorous coaching schools in the country. He is certified as a Professional Certified Coach (PCC) through the International Coach Federation (ICF), the profession’s governing board. Chris has also trained extensively in systems thinking, action learning, learning styles, and complexity theory from the MHA Institute of Edmonton, Canada. He is qualified to administer the LPI Leadership 360 (LPI: Kouzes and Posner). He served for three years on the Board of Directors of the International Coach Federation – Metro DC Chapter. Chris is involved with the coaching program at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business.

    Photo of Sandi Stewart

    Sandi Stewart is an executive coach and consultant with over 20 years of organizational experience. She works with C-suite officers, executives, managers, and entrepreneurs in catalyzing their work and their teams and assisting with planning and implementing change in their organizations. She has worked with public, non-profit and private sector organizations, including Lockheed Martin, Petco, Ernst & Young, Cemex, Comcast, PBS, Fannie Mae, U.S. Department of Commerce, China Institute, Federal Reserve Board, Brookings, WETA, and National Geographic.

    Individuals have seen their work satisfaction and effectiveness transform through Sandi’s coaching programs that include assessments, readings, and supportive inquiry to build clear next steps to help her clients achieve their goals. Clients can choose to address their life and work goals holistically providing them with tools to optimize and energize both their work and personal lives.

    Sandi’s career has spanned a number of industries in her roles as manager, marketer and strategic planner including manufacturing, engineering services, healthcare, cable TV, publishing, non-profit services. She was a manager with Johnson & Johnson, Hearst/ABC, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich and Ferrero, N.A. This work experience, an M.B.A., and her more than 20 years of consulting and coaching has given her a breadth of understanding of the diverse challenges executives face.

    Sandi has a BA in psychology and French from Colgate University and an MBA from Columbia University. She trained as a coach with Coach University and Corporate Coach University. Sandi has been featured in national and local print publications and radio with her writing on coaching and life balance. She is a Certified Coach with the International Coach Federation and a Certified Behavioral and Motivational Analyst through Target Training International. Sandi is also Adjunct Professor at Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland teaching leadership development.

    Photo of Mazher Ahmad

    Mazher Ahmad, is a Principal at Philosophy IB where he works with Fortune 500 companies and non-profit organizations to design and implement strategic organizational change and leadership development solutions that impact business performance. Mazher also serves as an executive coach and advisor to senior leaders across a variety of functions and industries, helping them unlock their full potential to achieve their desired aspirations.

    Prior to joining Philosophy IB, Mazher was the Chief People Officer on the Operating Committee of the KIPP Foundation, the nation’s largest and highest performing charter school management organization. In his role, Mazher helped build and manage the organization’s talent function, creating robust performance management, talent acquisition, compensation and benefits systems and served as a strategic talent advisor and coach to the broader organization’s senior leaders.

    Mazher also worked for Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) in a number of strategic talent development and business roles, including the Chief of Staff for the Chairman and CEO. During his tenure at D&B, he led the growth of the company’s high potential leadership development programs and oversaw the assessment, search and selection for members of the Global Leadership Team.

    In addition to his operating experience with non-profit and Fortune 500 organizations, Mazher served as a strategy management consultant with Marakon Associates, where he advised multinational corporations in the health care and pharmaceutical industries on key business process and talent management issues.

    Mazher received his MBA from the University of Chicago, Booth School of Business and his bachelor’s degrees from the University of Pennsylvania Annenberg School for Communication. Mazher also was selected as a Broad Resident in Urban Education and served on the Board of Advisors for the New Jersey All Stars Program.

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    “Thank you for this exceptional experience. It far exceeded my expectations and they were high.” -Devah Galloway, Training Specialist, Spring 2015

    “The program is fantastic! It has been great to experience and apply the different types of coaching.” -Jeff Boss, President, Spring 2015

    “This program is excellent! The course makes me move outside of my comfort zone and explore myself. This is exactly what I’ll be doing with coaching clients. Firsthand experience is the best re-enforcement for success.” -Deborah O’Donnell, SVP, Total Rewards, Spring 2015

    “Throughout the first two days of the modules, the instructors have been insightful, knowledgeable, thoughtful, patient, and “there for us.” Their passion for our development is clear and compelling. In fact, it is motivating.” -Thomas Ward, Leadership Consultant, Spring 2015

    “This program is fantastic! It’s everything that I expected. To be challenged to grow and learn and develop my coaching skills.” -Richard Kea, OD Specialist, Fall 2014

    “My experience with this program has been great! I appreciate the energy and honesty of everyone in the room. It has been a good balance of instruction and practical experience.” -Brandie Schieb, Deputy Division Chief, Fall 2014

    “My experience with this program has been extremely positive. The tools and processes are good, specifically the framework regarding perspective coaching. This is new to me and the step-by-step process is powerful in order to help the client discover and explore new ways of thinking. I appreciate the variety of ways in which the content is delivered. Lecture, experience, debrief. From classroom to conference calls and live coaching with one-on-one feedback. Extremely valuable.” -Ronnie Kurtin, Director, Human Resources, Fall 2014

    “Wonderful and challenging at the same time. I really enjoy the format, especially coming together as a cohort frequently. The weekly calls keep the learning top at mind.” -Amy McDuffie-Blacket, HR Business Partner, Fall 2014

    “This has been a wonderful and eye-opening experience. Having taken the CTI program already, I really appreciate the focus on business and executive coaching that this course brings to the table.” –Emily Sullivan, Fidelity Investments, Spring 2014

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    1. Will past students be able to obtain retroactive certification through the International Coach Federation (ICF)?

    All past participants are now eligible to apply for their credential using the ACTP application method. If you need assistance, please contact Mazher Ahmad at

    2. I’ve completed the Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance Certificate Program and would like to continue with my coaching education, now what?

    Mason’s Center for the Advancement of Well-Being offers the Advanced Coaching Program in Leadership and Well-Being, a six-month, cohort based program designed specifically for coaches who have already completed an ICF Accredited Coach Training Program. Visit their website at

    3. What is the required commitment for this course outside of the classroom?

    Approximately four hours per week of homework which may be practicing coaching and/or reading assignments, six taped coaching sessions and six feedback sessions with instructors (one-on-one) during the final months of the program, and scheduled teleconference calls throughout the program.

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