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As prefaced last month, many people get confused by the role of a consultant versus that of a coach.

A consultant gives professional or expert advice. There are many types of consultants, but they typically have an expertise in a particular industry or specific field. A coach, on the other hand, often works with organizations and individuals to help them use more of their potential and achieve their desired results. These two roles bring important, yet different, benefits to companies and individuals. Let’s take a closer look at coaching.

What a Coach Is . . .

Whether we are talking about a business or an individual, a coach is:

  • Someone who helps you define what success means to you.
  • Someone who helps you identify what is really important.
  • Someone who helps you close the gap between where you are and where you want to be.
  • Someone who helps you recognize that you have a lot more potential than you are using today and helps you discover how to use it.
  • Someone who helps you uncover what you already know but aren’t applying to help you achieve results.
  • Someone who helps you remove the obstacles that are getting in your way.
  • Someone who helps you hold yourself accountable to yourself.

An Effective Coach is:

  • Focused
  • Goal-directed
  • Empowering
  • Authentic
  • Holistic
  • Responsive
  • Synergistic
  • Experiential

What a Coach Isn’t . . .

A coach can be many things to an individual and organization, but a coach is not:

  • A consultant
  • A trainer
  • A psychologist

Should you have a coach? And, who in your personal life or professional sphere might benefit from working with a coach to help sharpen skills and overcome hurdles to better performance? Most coaching clients are pretty secure in who they are, but they want more – or they want something better, faster, or easier -with more effective results.