Clients looking for career coaching often head into the process expecting that the coach will deliver all the answers.
These clients tend to not understand the difference between coaching and consulting, even though there are some real fundamental differences. It becomes easier for the coach, as well as for the client, if they come into the process with a solid understanding of the differences between career coaching and consulting, so let’s take a quick look at what they are.
What is a career coach?
With so many “coaches” now flooding the market, the term has become somewhat generalized, which makes it pretty obvious why there is so much confusion. The ICF define the industry as follows:
“Coaches honor the client as the expert in his or her life and work and believe every client is creative, resourceful and whole.”
With that in mind, a career coach should accept the following responsibilities:
- Discover, clarify, and align with what the client wants to achieve
- Encourage client self-discovery
- Elicit client-generated solutions and strategies
- Hold the client responsible and accountable
A coach guides you by finding out what makes you tick, and by discovering what your strengths and career goals are. A coach is of the belief that client has the answers they seek, and will attempt to help them come to that self-realization. As a coach, I don’t believe it’s up to me to hand feed you the answers, but rather to lead you on a journey of self-discovery that allows you to answer for yourself. I can help you find and reach your potential, making you aware that you are responsible for all that has past, and all that is still to come. A coach is there to make sure that you identify your long-term goals, and then get on the right path towards achieving them.
What is a career consultant?
A career consultant serves in more of an advisory role in order to help their clients with the problems they are facing. The consultant is not looking to help the client reach their potential, as their job is simply to help solve a specific issue. If you are looking for answers to long term goals, then a coach is the person you need to talk to, whereas current problems that you are facing in your career can be quickly and effectively solved by a consultant. This is why some people choose to have a coach and a consultant on their team at the same time.
I hope this clears up the confusion and helps you see the differences between a career coach and a consultant. A coach is all about empowerment and long-term goals, while career consultants tend to focus more on giving advice on current issues.
This should help you decide which way to go when it comes time to seek help with your career. Are you looking to create some long-term goals for your career, or are you simply looking for advice about your current situation? That is the question that you need to answer before making a move. If you still feel that you need some help, please feel free to contact U Diverse at your earliest convenience. career development coaching, career management, job search strategies