One of the questions I often get asked is: “What is coaching all about?”, which is often followed by “how does it differ from mentoring, advice, or counselling?”

A helpful (and rather simplistic!) way that I like to describe the difference between coaching versus other disciplines using this bike riding metaphor:

  • Counselling: when did you get hurt on your bike, and how did it make you feel?
  • Mentoring: this is how I ride a bike, do what I do.
  • Consulting: this is what is wrong with your bike riding, follow my recommendations for improvement.
  • Coaching: Where do you want to go?

You’re in the driver’s seat…

A coach is someone you can springboard ideas off and who can provide you with useful tools and strategies to help get you to where you want to be.

Every coach has different styles and different methods or ways of coaching.  Finding the ‘right fit’ coach for you is important, so make sure you shop around (and hire someone with a coaching certification!).

I’m certified with Gallup as an accredited CliftonStrengths coach. You can find out more about my style of coaching here.

I help ignite potential in others so that they can make more of a positive impact in their life and work.  My clients build awareness and appreciation of their talents and how to apply these to achieve their goals.  You can read more about what my clients have said about the impact coaching has had in their worlds.

In essence, a coach’s primary purpose is to stimulate, motivate and facilitate an individual’s growth, development and performance.  Coaching is a non-therapeutic intervention (so it’s not like counselling). Everything discussed in coaching sessions is strictly confidential. It doesn’t go any further (subject to certain exemptions regarding the safety of yourself and others). Still, I encourage all my clients to share their insights with their managers or colleagues. 

And lastly, I believe that every coach needs their own coach! I have monthly sessions with my coach, Christopher Miller. The time and investment has been so worth it in developing and tuning my own practice and performance, to focus on what I do best, love most and others value most in me. I’m so grateful for this.