Are mentoring and coaching the same?
No. People often confuse mentoring and coaching. Though related, they are not the same. A mentor may coach, but a coach is not a mentor. Mentoring is “relational,” while coaching is “functional.” There are other significant differences.
- Managers coach all of their staff as a required part of the job
- Coaching takes place within the confines of a formal manager-employee relationship
- Focuses on developing individuals within their current jobs
- Interest is functional, arising out of the need to ensure that individuals can perform the tasks required to the best of their abilities
- Relationship tends to be initiated and driven by an individual’s manager
- Relationship is finite - ends as an individual transfers to another job
- Takes place outside of a line manager-employee relationship, at the mutual consent of a mentor and the person being mentored
- Is career-focused or focuses on professional development that may be outside a mentoree’s area of work
- Relationship is personal - a mentor provides both professional and personal support
- Relationship may be initiated by a mentor or created through a match initiated by the organization
- Relationship crosses job boundaries
- Relationship may last for a specific period of time (nine months to a year) in a formal program, at which point the pair may continue in an informal mentoring relationship
Are there any other differences you think should be added to our list?
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