Focus and Purpose: Coaching focusses on achieving specific goals or addressing specific challenges. It is usually 6 months to one-year specific goal-oriented relationship between a coach and coachee aimed at enhancing performance, personal development and achieving specific outcomes. Whereas mentoring focusses on providing guidance, advice, and support based on the mentor’s experience and expertise. The primary purpose of mentoring is to help the mentee’s overall career development and personal growth over longer period.
Experience: Coaches don’t necessarily need to have direct experience in the field or the role of the person being coached. In the coaching conversation, coaches use various coaching techniques and questioning strategies to help the coachee discover the solutions on their own. The process helps the coachee enhance their way of thinking to strengthen and develop capabilities required to achieve their goals. Whereas mentors usually have extensive experience in the field relevant to the mentee. They share their knowledge, insights and advice based on their own experience.
Approach: Coaches don’t give advice and they don’t share their knowledge or expertise but ask open ended questions to help a coachee explore their thoughts, identify obstacles, and develop actionable plans. The emphasis is to empower the coachee to find their own solution, this helps the coachee gain confidence in their ability to perform a task or solve the problem. Whereas the mentors provide guidance, share their stories, and offer advice based on their personal experience. They may also provide direct solutions which a coach would never does.
b) Is a coach who has experience or a role similar to the client better than the coach who has a different experience?
A prevailing misconception often suggests that the effectiveness of a coach is directly correlated with their industry-specific experience and tenure. While it is true that industry expertise is valuable, equating it with coaching excellence oversimplifies the multifaceted nature of coaching.
Contrary to popular belief, a coach’s proficiency should not solely hinge on their industry background. In fact, excessive industry experience can inadvertently lead to biases and a rigid adherence to one’s own methods and practices. It is essential to recognize that every individual is unique, with distinct capacities, perspectives, and aspirations.
A truly exceptional coach transcends industry boundaries and delves into the core of individual growth and development. They possess the ability to understand you on a profound level, appreciating how you perceive and interact with your environment. Such a coach is equipped to facilitate your personal and professional evolution, tailoring their approach to your specific needs and objectives.
Conversely, mentors, often positioned as industry veterans, play a pivotal role in offering industry-specific guidance and wisdom. Their extensive experience and knowledge are invaluable for those seeking to navigate the intricacies of a particular field.
Psychological coaching focusses on:
Transformative and long-lasting effects: Psychological coaching focusses on coaching the person for deeper and transformative change which helps the coachee not only achieve the outcome but also learn and develop, have deeper insights for long lasting effects. A Psychological coach helps the person elevate their thinking to develop a capacity to open their minds to different perspectives making them confident in their abilities rather than just simply helping the person to solve the problem at hand which most of the other coaches do.
Approach: Coaching is about asking the right questions and using the right techniques to create insights and shift a coachee’s perspective, it depends on which approach or framework a coach is using to guide their questioning. Most coaches use one or two frameworks to guide their coaching questions and techniques. A psychological coach uses a combination of Psychological, Existential, Humanistic, Gestalt, Psycho-somatic, NLP, Neuroscience, Systems, approaches to inform their assessment of their client’s needs as well as to assess the moment-to-moment information emerging during the conversation.
Being informed by the combination of these approaches, a psychological coach understands the nuances of human experience better than other coaches. It enhances their capability to have very deep conversations and ask targeted questions during coaching sessions which helps a coachee create deep insights, elevate their learning and development resulting in achieving greater results as compared to working with other coaches.
Collaborative and relational orientation to coaching significantly effects the flow and outcome of the work between a coach and a coachee. Most of the other coaches focus on achieving the outcome but a psychological coach focus on relationship between the client and the coach as they understand that the coach-coachee relationship has a deep psychological impact on essential aspects for facilitating change. They focus on enhancing and strengthening the client’s ability to deliver the outcome.
Here is an overview of how I work as a coach :
The coaching relationship usually begins with an initial meeting where myself and the client establish a rapport, define the client’s goals, and clarify what they want to achieve through coaching. These goals can be related to personal growth, career advancement, skills development, work-life balance, leadership, or other areas.