What's the world's brightest flashlight?....
Coaches are goal oriented working with clients on skill development, learning, proficiency and adjusting to change using recognized inherent strengths and new methods. Progress begins at a particular level with the intention of reaching an advanced level, often containing 'plateau' stages where the client must work to ingrain before they can advance.
Coaches have a demonstrated background of expertise and accomplishment in the endeavor they are teaching, which is often the same field as the client but doesn't always have to be.
An example is a sports psychologist who coaches athletes with techniques to overcome performance anxiety without being a professional athlete themselves. The athlete (client) benefits from multiple coaches for the same goal - performance, using different skills learned from different professionals.
If the intention is to improve outcomes by incorporating a new skill traditionally outside the client's environment, the notion that coaching work can only bear fruit from someone within the same field is an inaccurate assumption- that something 'outside' can't be beneficial or instructional to the 'inside.' As an example of this same line of thinking- that psychology had nothing to do with athletic performance pervaded sports until athletes desperate to overcome their anxiety challenged that conventional wisdom by seeking help outside of their environment.
Ultimately, the onus is on the coach to fully understand and incorporate: the environment, realities and variables impacting clients and their effect on the intended goal of the work.
Why we combine both methods
Because learning and development are not partitioned activities.
Multiple methods at varying and appropriate times yield better outcomes as the client moves through the work. People are complex beings with myriad responses to learning and change unlike objects that typically respond to an intervention in consistent ways.
There are moments for learning through teaching and moments for learning through discovery. A facilitator practiced in both mentoring and coaching is a more valuable asset to the client.
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How do we structure Coaching/Mentoring Services?
Our coaching/mentoring services can be used for reinforcement and development following workshop training, which we highly recommend for best outcomes, or it can be structured as a single service.
Either way it is a customized program of services structured to the needs of the client and intended goals identified through interview and assessment.
Mentoring and coaching are words often used interchangeably, but there are key differences that affect expectations, drive assumptions and result in outcomes that can be game changers or big disappointments.
Coaching and mentoring are examples of 'process learning' that occur over a period of time and at a pace suited for the client and learning environment. Coaching alone is typically structured with a beginning, mid-point and intended completion. Whereas mentoring alone is facilitated through a flexible relationship as needed by the client, usually without a pre-determined end point.
Mentors work with perspective, transitions and crossroads for the purpose of progress, development, problem-solving, insight and support. They use an array of tools including reflection, objectivity, role modeling, encouragement, 'devil's advocacy', suggestion, personal experience, candid feedback and most important-listening. A mentor does not strive to 'fix' but instead guides a mentee to develop and discover their own resolutions, path and 'aha' moments.
Mentors have a demonstrated background of expertise and accomplishment but it does not have to be within the same field as the mentee to be a meaningful, fruit-bearing relationship.A good mentor shines a light in the direction (s) the mentee is interested in going to illuminate a path, but not be the one navigating it.
Suggested training and coaching topics listed on our Training page.
see also Koden Consulting Services, LLC