- Posted by Val
- On February 11, 2015
- 0 Comments
- coaching, counselling, managing, mentoring
When you say coaching what immediately comes to your mind? Do you think of its application in sports or in the business world? Coaching has its roots in sports, it’s earliest application in the business was called “developmental counselling” (Flory, 1965) and has since grown into a formal and professional intervention done to develop people.
Coaching has performance in it’s core. It is a professional and personal partnership between the coach and the coachee. The coach creates awareness to the coacheee and allows him or her to be responsible for the performance goals set.
However, because coaching is relatively new, there are still a lot of confusion as to what it really is and is not. Here are some things people mistake for coaching
Mentoring – The word mentoring is the present participle of the verb “mentor”. To mentor as defined by the dictionary is:
to teach or give advice or guidance to (someone, such as a less experienced person or a child) : to act as a mentor for (someone) – merriam-webster.com
This is how mentoring is, an engagement between a more senior person (the mentor) and a subordinate (the mentee). Think of it as an apprenticeship to pass on a knowledge or a specific skill. The mentor imparts his wisdom to the mentee which is normally derived from the mentor’s own experience. In mentoring, goals and timelines need not be defined because mentoring could be done on a per need basis of the mentee.
A coach on the other hand, need not be a senior (in age, or in experience) of the person being coached. The coach rarely imparts his or her own wisdom or knowledge to the coachee. The coachee decides which skills or knowledge to use for a specific goal. They simply become accountable to the coach. This is why, the coach need not be an expert of the field of the coachee.
Managing – To be able to define the word, let’s take a look at what a manager does according to the father of Modern Management himself, Peter Drucker:
The manager sets objectives; organizes by analyzing the activities, decisions and relations needed; motivates and communicates; measures (i.e. metrics, etc..), develops people – derived from The Practice of Management, Peter Drucker
Managing is an umbrella term for everything that a manager does in the organization. In fact, a manager can very well be a mentor, or even a coach.
Coaching may fall under the responsibility of a manager. The manager is concerned with the performance of the people in accordance to organizational goals. The coach helps the people meet this performance requirements. If the coach is hired outside of the organizational context, then the coach may touch on non-organizational goals as well.
Counselling – This is more of a psychological than a management practice. Although, because most HR staff has a Psychology background, we see this subtly happening within the office too. Counselling Psychology, as they would call it, focuses on facilitating personal and inter-personal functioning. According to the American Psychological Association, it pays particular attention to emotional, social, vocational, educational, health-related, developmental, and organizational concerns. The wide scope of this intervention differentiates it to coaching. Counselling deals with emotions, and tries to trace the origin of the problem/s (past) being addressed – coaching rarely deal with these issues.
Coaching is more forward looking, performance-oriented (measurable). Although coaching considers emotional and health issues, it only does when it gets in the way of performance- more often, a coachee can be referred to a professional counsellor if needed.