Both coaching and mentoring has the same goals: to enable individuals to maximize their full potentials, which can be useful in their various roles and functions held in companies and organizations. Although there are many uses and applications of coaching and mentoring, the steps and procedures conducted by coaches and mentors are just about the same. They act as facilitators in identifying the needs, skills, and motivations of the individuals that can bring about changes in their personal and professional lives. During the session, they also utilize useful techniques of questioning. They assist in establishing goals and ways of monitoring an individual’s progress in line with these goals. They encourage, motivate, and inspire individuals in developing their competencies.
Amidst all these similarities, there are also distinctions in the concepts of coaching and mentoring. In this article, these will be further discussed along with the difference of coaching and mentoring from other types of services or processes such as counseling and training.
Understanding the Coaching and Mentoring Processes
In order to get a clear understanding of the processes that take place during coaching and mentoring, the following distinct activities are defined by Robert Dilts:
It is the process of leading an individual or a group from the current state to an ideal or desired condition.
Coaching is the process of assisting a person in developing performance.
Teaching is the process of assisting an individual or a group in the development of cognitive talents and skills which can be useful in life.
It is the process of changing a person’s values and perceptions into an optimistic approach.
It is the process of facilitating an individual to get over personal issues, especially those past issues that may hinder the person from making a change to the better.
What is the Difference Between Coaching and Mentoring?
As we go thorough the list of attributes or characteristics common to both coaching and mentoring, we must note that there are some differences in these attributes. These distinctions will be outlined based on the following categories:
The main focus in coaching is performance development. In mentoring, the highlight is more on the individual or the person.
b. Role or Function
The coach has a specific agenda and a specific function while the mentor can be any individual who is capable of acting as a facilitator but does not have a particular agenda.
Coaching has something to do more with career and job aspect. Mentoring is more about self-reflection.
d. Source of Influence
A coach is usually someone who is in a higher level or rank such as a supervisor or a manager. In the workplace, a person is titled a coach because that is the given role. A mentor can be someone with a perceived value. A mentor is not called as such unless the individual says so or considers the person as a mentor.
e. Personal Returns
Coaching is geared toward developing individual performance, so the focus is on the person being coached. In mentoring, aside from the development of the individual, the mentor himself learns from the feedback and remarks of the mentee.
Coaching is more applicable in an office setting or in a sports team where individuals have tasks to accomplish. Mentoring is usually conducted in schools and organizations, or other areas where a great deal of personal values and aspects of life have to be changed.
Difference of Coaching and Mentoring with Other Areas
What is the difference of coaching and mentoring from areas such as training, counseling and consultancy?
a. Training and Development
One obvious difference of training from coaching and mentoring is the complete acquisition of a new set of skills and knowledge such as technical, product specific knowledge or skills needed for a new job role.
Coaching and counseling are similar in many ways. However, with counseling, the main objective is to guide the individual toward self-managed actions for the attainment of personal goals. Counselors deal with personal issues at a broader and greater scope.
The primary focus of a consultancy is organizational development in terms of structure, systems or processes, and practices. It is geared more on a company-wide scope rather than individual aspect.