When we think about education and learning to prepare for and advance in our careers, we recognize that we start with school and training. Next, we move to having advisors, mentors, or consultants. At an advanced level, we move to coaching.
Let’s explore this in more detail.
- Education and learning include school, degrees, training, and certifications. It is an opportunity to be given the information, study, practice, and reflect.
- Advisors, mentors, and consultants have more experience and expertise that they in turn share. Their role is to be the expert.
- Coaching is a partnership. The coach provides a process and holds the client as their own best expert. The coaching process serves the client to discover their own answers and create their own strategies.
While coaching is a skill set that serves educators and trainers well, educating and training is inappropriate when coaching.
Coaching is a skill set that also serves advisors, mentors, and consultants well. Advising, mentoring, and consulting are inappropriate when coaching.
The International Coaching Federation definition of coaching is, “Coaching is partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize
their personal and professional potential.” Notice the word choices. Partnering means the coach and the client are on an even level – they are partners. Thought-provoking, creative, and inspires imply advanced development. Maximize their personal and professional potential is the advance result achieved through the advanced learning.