The following is an excerpt from the CoachStart Manual.
The most obvious point to remember is that coaching is not therapy, counseling, or psychology. In addition, coaching should not be confused with consulting or mentoring — there are subtle differences between each of these interventions. Whilst the coaching process may have originated in the field of psychology and intervention often follows some psychological models, the actual coaching process should not be mistaken for a therapeutic intervention. Some of the differences include:
The passing on of knowledge, experiences, and skills usually by someone within the company who is older and wiser. Usually more specifically career-oriented information. A mentor has normally achieved the goal themselves, while a coach may not have any experience in the given coaching area.
Often using your own skills to improve a given situation, as opposed to developing the client’s skills to a level that can cope effectively with the situation.
- Therapy and counseling:
Tends to focus on feelings related to past events and processing such feelings. Coaching is oriented towards goal setting and encouraging the client to actively move forward. Tony Grant from Sydney University has said: “Therapy is like helping someone with a broken leg to walk again. Coaching is helping them to run the four minute mile”.