Generally speaking, consultants usually have an agenda and also come in with some possible answers; consultants bring those answers and agenda to the client. They are the experts in their respective fields. Coaches have NO agenda…. Say what? That’s right no agenda except to help the client get what he/she wants. Some coaches have specializations in certain fields; but their true expertise is in the coaching process. One major difference is that a consultant will promote themselves as the expert in certain aspects of life and a coach accepts that each client is the expert in their OWN lives and has their own answers to any given situation or event. Unlike a consulting relationship, where as a consultant comes in and consults their expertise, then leave it up to the client to implement the plan of action on their own. Coaches stay with and “partners” with each client to help implements and plan they develop together. Coaches bring about change that is effective, and they do whatever is necessary to help the client do what he/she says he/she will do. Think of coaches like a trusted adviser, they provide a confidential and safe environment in which the client can explore issues and concerns.
Mentors are like role models, they've “been there done that” and will “show you the ropes” in relation to a coach they don’t use personal experiences for the clients. Keeping in mind that the client is the expert on his/her own life. A coach is the expert on the coaching process and does not need to have the first hand knowledge that helps the client.
Now let’s talk therapy, which is by far one of the most common questions from people new to coaching. Generally speaking, therapist functions are the help clients fix problems in the past, or overcome issues, and sometimes manage mental illness. Coaches do not coach mental illness and really don’t spend much if any time on client issues or problems. Coaches see just the opposite, nothing is a problem, in fact everything is an opportunity. The focus is solutions, there is no dwelling on the past or try and analyze behavior. Coaches will use the past as a learning/growing tool, and if need be, part of the present situation. They do not start with the past, but coaches help release the energy that the past has on the clients so they are able to move forward. More simply put, therapist finds out “why” coaches focus on the “how”
Of course you value and love each and every confidant in our lives. You trust them to give you advice and confide in them the most important aspect of your life, but who are you kidding? The friends and family usually have their own agenda and are busy telling you what you should and should not do. Friends may not point out issues you should be addressing, because they are afraid they will hurt your feelings. Coaches collaborate and listen (haha, no vanilla ice pun intended!) and make actions plans based on what the client wants and think he/she wants! A solid thing to note, coaches are objective and non judgmental.
There are many similarities within a professional coaching and a spots coaching. One distinct difference is that professional coaching is not based on completion or on a win-or-lose scenario. Professional coaches bring out the best in a person, not the best someone else. On the contrary of sport coaching, professional coaching help clients create win-win scenarios for everyone involved.
Now does that clear some things up? If you are reading this and are not a client of mine right now, ask me for your free 30 minute complementary session! You've literally have nothing to lose and everything to gain. firstname.lastname@example.org or visit my website www.fullpursuitlifecoaching.com