Whenever I have attempted to do something completely new or incredibly challenging in my life, I find that leaning on my community is extremely critical for my success. Mentors and coaches are an important part of that community. So what’s the difference between a mentor and a coach you ask? And when would I use one vs. the other?
Mentors and coaches serve their own purpose at different stages of your learning and development journey, whether in your professional or personal life.. To accelerate learning and development over the long term and truly help you develop your whole self, a mentor can be an invaluable asset. They tend to be subject matter experts in one or more subjects that are of interest to you and more than likely have done what you are hoping to accomplish. However, if you have a short-term, specific need or meet specific goals, then a coach is an incredible resource. In the end, it all depends on what you want to accomplish and how quickly you want to get there.
While you can clearly leverage a mentor or a coach or both, this table below helps summarize each of their roles and helps you leverage them appropriately.
Leveraging mentors and coaches have made a tremendously positive impact in my life and if you leverage them the right way, I am confident they can truly make an outsized impact on yours. Go ahead, engage a mentor or a coach and see what a difference it makes!