Life Coach versus Executive Coach 3 of 3

The greatest indicator of success in a coaching relationship is the rapport established between the coach and the client. The rapport starts with a client’s comfort level with their coach. When a Life Coach is hired, their experience and expertise is often unknown; coaches are most often referred or met at an event. When an Executive Coach is hired, training, expertise, and specific industry experiences are discussed and considered.

The client of a Life Coach is seeking someone that understands, and many think they want someone that can tell them what to do because they are unaware of the impact effective coaching has in their ability to determine their own action plan. The client of an Executive Coach wants someone that has expertise and knows their industry.

The work of a Life Coach is focused on the individual client. The work of an Executive Coach includes the client and the sponsor – the company of business paying for coaching services. An Executive Coach is generally required to have a higher level of specific expertise and to spend more time because of the interactions with the sponsor.

The ideal experience of either the Life or Executive Coach begins with a coaching-specific training or certification program. The International Coaches Federation reviews programs of 30 hours or more for accreditation.

For a client, the ideal experience of a coach may also include specific areas of expertise. The work effort of the coach is agreed before beginning the coaching relationship.

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