Since the 1980’s, coaching has become more and more common in the business world. Here is a summary description of where the field of coaching originated:
“Through the application of many years of theory about human technology, what used to be privy to the therapist’s office is now used by golf instructors, teachers, and other self-improvement gurus. Coaching was born as a result of great advances in psychotherapy and counseling, then blended with consulting practices, and organizational and personal development trends (such as EST, PSI Seminars, LifeSpring, LandMark Forum, Tony Robbins and others). Coaching takes the best each of these areas has to offer and provides a now standardized and proven method for partnering with people for success.” Coaching Vs. Psychology: The Great Debate by Patrick Williams, Ed.D, MCC
This is a very common question. Although there are many similarities, these are some of the differences:
In counseling, an individual works with a mental health professional who holds a mental health license, applying principles of mental health and psychology to address personal issues.
A consultant is a person with a certain set of skills or expertise who helps an individual achieve results through the application of the consultant’s specific expertise. The consultant advises the client on the best course of action to take. The consultant may or may not transfer his or her knowledge or skill set to the client.
In coaching, the focus is on strengthening the client’s self-awareness and inner wisdom so that the client realizes and is empowered to fulfill his or her full potential. Coaching focuses on the achievement of client’s self-identified goals within a specified time frame and is focused on creating permanent personal behavioral change within the client.