The Context of Coaching or mentoring practice.
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Both terms are processes that enable individuals or even corporate clients to achieve full potential. Although the terms are often used in the same sentences there are differences as well as similarities between the two. It is true that both are used to facilitate the exploration of needs, skills, motivations and thought processes. They are both designed to assist the individual or organisation in making lasting and tangible change.
As mentioned previously there are differences between the two and here I have highlighted a number of them. Coaches do not need to have first- hand experience of the coachee’s line of work. In contrast mentoring is normally where a more experienced individual who has knowledge and skill in the same field of work is paired with a less experienced person.
To explain this further I have included definitions of both:
"A process that enables learning and development to occur and thus performance to improve. To be a successful a Coach requires a knowledge and understanding of process as well as the variety of styles, skills and techniques that are appropriate to the context in which the coaching takes place” Eric Parsloe
"off-line help by one person to another in making significant transitions in knowledge, work or thinking” Clutterbuck, D and Megginson, D.
As a line manager I could use coaching techniques either in a formal setting or a more ad hoc way to successfully develop individuals within my team. The role of a mentor is one that does not normally have line management responsibility for the mentee.
In regard to the process, a Coach asks probing and often thought provoking questions and would not normally offer advice/guidance. A mentor on the other hand can provide guidance, taking a more directive approach. – Questioning techniques will often
References: Eric Parsloe, The manager the coach and the mentor(1999) page 8. Clutterbuck, D & Megginson, D, Mentoring Executives and Directors (1999) page 3 Kenton and Moody (2001) Barbara Kenton, Diane Moody Roffey Park Institute Ltd, Jan 2001 Myles Downey in his book "Effective Coaching" Effective Coaching: Lessons from the Coach 's Coach, Oct 2003. Bachkirova, T. Stevens, P and Willis, P (2005). Coaching Supervision (online). Oxford: Brookes, (http://brookes.ac.uk/schools/education/macoachment- pgcert.html) Blucket, P (2004) Coaching Supervision (online). Bingley: peter Bluckert Coaching. (http//www.pbcoaching.com/articlecoaching-supervision.php) Hawkins, P and Smith N (2006) Coaching, mentoring and organisational consultancy: Supervision and Development. Maidenhead: open university Press.