Organizations today are operating in an increasingly complex, multicultural and global context. Cultural differences are often a source of misunderstanding, frustration and even derailment (notably in cross-border mergers and acquisitions). However, when leveraged, cultural diversity opens new choices. It becomes a source of creativity and opportunity to go beyond current limitations to achieve sustainable and meaningful success.
The COF assessment facilitates the understanding of salient cultural characteristics for individuals, teams and organizations.
User friendly, straightforward, highly flexible and customizable, reasonably priced, the COF assessment is an ideal tool for individual coaching, leadership development, intercultural training, team coaching and organizational cultural audits.
Based on Philippe Rosinski’s groundbreaking book Coaching Across Cultures, chosen by the Harvard Business School as its featured book recommendation in the category of business leadership, the COF assessment goes hand in hand with an inclusive and dynamic vision of culture, beyond the traditional binary and static approaches, which often tend to reinforce stereotypes.
The COF assessment goes further than the sole national focus and allows users to examine the other cultural influencers that make up our identities (gender, profession, generation, etc.). It lets users view group cultural profiles in multiple, customizable ways (e.g., team, organization as well as profiles per categories/fields predefined by users, such as division, nationality, management level, merging entities, etc.) and allows them to add their own customized cultural dimensions to the 17 standard COF dimensions.
Control / Harmony / Humility
Scarce / Plentiful
Monochronic / Polychronic
Past / Present / Future
Being / Doing
Individualistic / Collectivistic
Hierarchy / Equality
Universalist / Particularist
Stability / Change
Competitive / Collaborative
Protective / Sharing
High context / Low context
Direct / Indirect
Affective / Neutral
Formal / Informal
Deductive / Inductive
Analytical / Systemic
Your customized supplemental COF dimensions
Preferred choice for many users
"We selected Rosinski's COF as a conceptual framework and primary assessment tool for several reasons (cultural categories transcend typical categorization, team profile can be utilized for future initiatives, cost effectiveness...). Other models were considered, however the COF framework seemed particularly designed for coaches to have coaching conversations that facilitate leveraging cultural differences and creating new possibilities."
Dr C Carr, PCC and L Seto, PCC (Canada),
International Journal of Evidence Based Coaching and Mentoring
Reference in many books and articles
The COF model has been described in the books Coaching Across Cultures,which integrated coaching and interculturalism for the first time and has been published in 10 languages, and in Global Coaching. Both books have been praised by Harvard University. Appears also in Evidence Based Coaching Handbook, Excellence in Coaching, The Routledge Companion to International Business Coaching, The Coaching Relationship, 52 Activities for Successful International Relocation,Positive Psychology in Coaching, Best Practice in Performance Coaching, The Psychology of Coaching and Mentoring, and more.
Different scope from traditional intercultural assessment tools
While still allowing comparison of individual profiles with various national cultures, the COF assessment has a much broader scope. The COF assessment aims at helping individuals grow by learning from cultural differences of various kinds. Culture here consists of all the characteristics we have acquired along the way, by interacting with various groups of people and being part of different cultural groups (family, generation, profession, company, country, religion, etc.). The COF™ assessment can be viewed as an equivalent, at the cultural level, to a personality assessment such as the MBTI®.
Multidimensional and flexible
With its 17 dimensions (more can be added on a custom basis), the COF allows us to become aware of our inevitable biases (e.g., how we communicate, think, manage time, organize ourselves, deal with power and responsibility), and to go beyond potentially limiting norms, values and beliefs. The COF allows discovery of new options to increase versatility, creativity and effectiveness. Its underlying dynamic and inclusive view of culture, enables us to build unity in diversity by leveraging cultural differences.
The COF has a number of uses:
This questionnaire will help you determine your cultural profile. As you respond to the questions, we invite you to reflect on the meaning of each dimension and think of your typical inclination in situations you have experienced.
A word of caution: Your answers to this questionnaire will help you to establish a cultural profile that constitutes a useful basis for further discussion, rather than a definite truth or absolutely valid measure.
To make the most of this assessment, you may consider:
Please understand that the cultural profile concept is somewhat of a stretch. Your cultural orientations depend indeed to a large extent on the cultural context (unlike psychological preferences). This means that your orientations frequently change (at least to some degree) depending on the situation (e.g., low context at work, high context with family and with close, long-time friends.)
How could you establish a reliable cultural profile?
Your cultural profile does not always determine your actions. For example, you might have an orientation toward competition, yet choose collaboration in a particular situation. Consequently, your cultural profile does not limit your potential. The opposite is true. Aware of your profile, you can discover new options outside your profile and tap into this unexpected potential.
Methodological considerations: usefulness versus validity
For a detailed discussion, please refer to Global Coaching, pp. 129-132.
Individual responses can be aggregated to establish collective COF profiles for research purposes or/and in the context of group projects (e.g., the COF team profile used in a team coaching intervention, COF organizational profile used for the cultural audit of an organization, COF profile of each division within an organization).
The COF assessment questionnaire is designed primarily as a developmental tool (both at the individual and group level) and also as an audit tool (at the group level).
Please note that the group COF profiles are obtained here through aggregation of individual COF profiles rather than the aggregation of individuals’ perceptions of the group’s cultural orientations and abilities.
The COF license is temporarily consumed/debited when a participant starts the questionnaire (state “Q1 started”). The participant has 24 hours to complete the questionnaire. The remaining time is visible for the participant in the list of projects in which he/she takes part. If the participant has not completed the questionnaire within the 24 hours, his/her questionnaire is reset (back to the “Registered” state). The license is credited for the COF project manager and can now be used by another participant. If the participant completes the questionnaire within the 24 hours, the COF license remains permanently debited, the chronometer disappears and the state becomes “Completed”.
The reason for this subtlety is to avoid a scenario where several participants would be starting the questionnaire at the same time but some would not be able to complete it in case the COF project manager has not purchased a sufficient number of licenses. Instead, in this situation, our COF assessment will indicate upfront to a participant who wishes to start the questionnaire that there are no COF licenses available left to do so and that he/she should contact his/her COF project manager.
In any event, we recommend that COF project managers ensure that they always have enough COF licenses left before launching a COF project.
We offer three possibilities for you to become certified to use the COF assessment.
The certification is highly recommended for using the COF assessment with your individual clients and indispensable with teams and organizations.
1. Attend one of our upcoming 3-day ICF-accredited Leading and Coaching Across Cultures / COF assessment certification seminarsUpcoming seminars
2. Constitute a group of minimum 8 participants to organize the 3-day certification seminar at your location!
3. Participate in a one-to-one supervision with Philippe Rosinski over the phone/Skype
This typically involves five one-hour supervision sessions, guided self-study and helping you through the various steps of your first COF project.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
After having been certified to use the COF assessment, you have the possibility -at no additional cost- to become Master COF certified. You essentially need to provide evidence that you have successfully used the COF assessment in a substantial client project (e.g., one intercultural team coaching, one organizational cultural audit, or five individual intercultural coaching). Upon successful completion of your project, you need to send the following information to Philippe Rosinski at email@example.com:
A) Sharing the relevant COF results plus a written description of your COF project (min 2.500 words) outlining:
B) A written confirmation of your commitment to continue meeting the high standards of quality and ethics when using the COF assessment, notably by promoting the inclusive and dynamic view of culture depicted in the book Coaching Across Cultures. Keeping the Master COF certification implies that you continue to meet these criteria.
Upon receiving this evidence that you have successfully used the COF assessment, particularly to the satisfaction of your client, we will send you your "COF Master" certificate and logo.
You will also be invited to join the LCAC Masters sub-group on LinkedIn, enabling you to exchange ideas and best practices with other past participants who have also successfully used the COF assessment. We look forward to supporting you in making the most of your COF certification.
The COF model is described in detail in Coaching Across Cultures: examples for each cultural dimension, various ways of leveraging differences, practical cases and recommendations. Coaching Across Cultures is the indispensable companion book to interpret and capitalize on your COF results.Find out more
Rosinski & Company’s mission is to help leaders, teams and organizations unleash their human potential to achieve high performance together with high fulfillment.Read more
Prof. Philippe Rosinski is a world authority in executive coaching, team coaching, and global leadership development. He has pioneered a global approach to coaching that leverages multiple perspectives for greater creativity, impact, fulfilment and meaning.Read more
Global Coaching includes methodological considerations about the COF assessment, case studies illustrating its application at three levels: individual, team and organization (e.g., M&As and alliances). Global Coaching is a key resource for COF certified users.Find out more
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