What is the difference between coaching, mentoring and consulting?

What is a Coach and what is a mentor?

I often hear people say “Why should I use you instead of a consultant or a mentor, What’s the difference?”

And having spent years learning and honing this skill and learning the intricacies of the latest ideas and thinking on the way we think, feel happy, achieve success and get what we want in life I would say that there’s no conversation on the planet like the conversation with a coach!

When I coach a client I can take the coaching hat off and I’ll tell a client I’m doing that to share ideas (that’s consultancy) and I’ll share my opinion if it looks like a client is really getting stuck (that’s mentoring) however coaching is enabling you to break through life time limiting beliefs and assumptions that are costing you success to help you understand what really matters to you, and to explore what you really want to achieve and how to achieve it easier on your terms creating laser focus and accountability.

It’s the most powerful conversation you will ever have, in a confidential, non-judgmental environment by using influential tools that take years to master and hone as a coach. (Although I feel strongly that everyone can learn some skills of a coach to communicate powerfully and think in a more effective way, quite easily if they wish to – it’s something I enjoy helping management and leaders to appreciate and learn!)

Here’s a good example for you;

A consultant may say “You need to do x, y and z?”

A mentor might say “How did you find using x, y and z, do you feel they could help in the future, here is what I found by using x, y and z and how to improve on them.”

A Coach may say “What have you tried so far? What did you notice that seemed to work? What do you think needs to change?” (And a lot more questions like that mean that you don’t just find a solution for this occasion, you learn to understand your natural style of thinking and what naturally works for you, so that as you advance in your goals, reach new obstacles or wish to achieve something else you learn what works for you and how to communicate powerfully into the bargain!)

The reason coaching is so effective is because we help you work authentically, according to the person you truly are. Tailor made coaching means a whole lot of listening. Consulting and mentoring involve a lot more talking!

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