Business Coaching vs. Mentoring: Definition, Purpose, Objective, and Qualifications

Business Coaching vs. Mentoring: Definition, Purpose, Objective, and Qualifications

Coaching and mentoring are terms that are used interchangeably quite often. However, they are not the same. Coaching is a type of service that is provided to meet a specific goal or deal with a particular performance problem. For example, people hire coaches if they need to boost confidence and improve their communication, or are looking for help in formulating a powerful strategy in order to achieve their revenue goals. Mentoring, on the other hand, is not that specific. 

The mentorship definition is more focused on holistic development and is more like guidance provided to a junior member of the team by a senior member whenever and wherever needed. The main difference between coaching and mentoring is that coaching makes things more structured while mentoring means something more need-based.

The purpose of coaching is to work with the client to solve a specific problem or to learn a particular skill, such as getting better at public speaking. What do mentors do? The mentoring role is to support the mentee in several different ways, such as by giving a valuable suggestion or connecting the mentee with resources they require at the start of their business.

The main objectives of coaching are to set and achieve SMART goals, motivate the required change, develop the target skills, and solve a particular problem according to the coaching definition. The objectives of mentoring, on the other hand, are to provide useful knowledge and guidance, accelerate growth, give feedback, and help the mentee in building connections.

Mentors are typically seniors belonging to the same field as you. There is no particular qualification or certification that is required to become a mentor. Your mentor is usually a person with more experience than you have. A coach, on the other hand, requires credentials to get clients to trust them. There are many training and certifications available that provide the necessary skills for coaches.

What Is Business Coaching?

Business coaching is a collaborative relationship between a business coach and a coachee who is likely a business owner or someone working in an executive position. A business coach helps the coachee to improve their skills, deal with weaknesses and formulate a strategy to achieve their goals. So, what is business coaching? The coaching definition states that what a client gains from a coaching relationship depends on their specific needs. Most of the time, business coaching helps the person being coached to improve their performance and to grow both as a person and a leader.

Helping a business owner to formulate clear goals, providing customized coaching expertise, and acting as an accountability partner are some of the business coaching essentials. Additionally, a business coach helps you build your business from scratch and provides you useful insight into identifying your target market.

What Is the Purpose of Business Coaching?

The purpose of business coaching is to accelerate the growth of your business and to formulate effective strategies in order to achieve your goal, be it to boost your revenue, expand your company, or something else.

The fundamentals of business coaching are to provide business owners with unbiased insight, guidance, and accountability so that they are able to take their business from where it is to where they want it to be. Another purpose of business coaching is to build leadership skills and motivate a change that enables you to succeed as a business owner. It all depends upon what you as a CEO or business owner want from your business coach.

What Is the Objective of Business Coaching?

The objective of business coaching is to make actionable plans for their coachee in order to help them succeed as a business owner. Another objective of business coaching is to hold you accountable constantly so that you remain focused and motivated so that you are able to keep your commitments and achieve your goal according to the set timeline. The objective of business coaching depends a great deal on what the business owner wants, whether it is to help them run their business smoothly or develop a specific skill.

Difference Between Business Coaching and Mentoring

What Makes You Qualified to Become a Business Coach?

There are five things that you need in order to become a qualified business coach: you need a relevant degree, training, and certification along with skills and experience. But first, what is a coach? A coach is a trained professional who works together with the client to help them identify their strengths and develop objectives. The list below contains everything you need to know about becoming a business coach. 

So, why hire a business coach? People hire business coaches for the benefits they offer, such as substantial business growth, unbiased insight, accountability and motivation, and sincere advice from someone you are able to trust.

How Important Is Coaching for Business?

Coaching is very important for business. Coaching is vital for business for many reasons, the most important of which is the growth of the business in the right direction. A business coach helps a business owner or CEO to clarify their vision and create a roadmap according to their needs which leads them to success. You are able to get fresh insight and improve your skills by onboarding an experienced business coach with you. Improved performance, increased revenue, and better leadership and accountability are among the many benefits business coaching offers.

Are Coaches More Knowledgeable Than Mentors?

No, coaches are not more knowledgeable than mentors. There are several differences between coaches and mentors, but being more or less knowledgeable is not one of them. A coach helps you better if you need to gain a new perspective, learn some new skills, or need to get more knowledge about a specific area, while a mentor provides guidance, offers advice, and supports you where needed without necessarily providing you a lot of information or helping you to learn a new skill.

What Is Business Mentoring?

Business mentoring is a relationship between a business owner and someone with more expertise who is able to provide guidance and advice whenever needed, according to the mentorship definition. Business mentors are not consultants or paid advisors; they are simply people that business owners trust and are most likely to go to for advice when they are making a difficult decision. Business mentors connect business owners with potential partners and opportunities, ask tough questions for them and help them to remain focused and motivated in order to achieve their business goals.

Business mentors are usually accomplished people with more expertise than you have in a specific field. They help you by giving constructive feedback and by sharing valuable expertise to deal with the challenges that you face while running a business. Business mentors are essential for business owners because they help them feel less lonely and play the role of a guide who has faced the same challenges and is empathetic, trustworthy, and reliable.

What Is the Purpose of Business Mentoring?

The purpose of business mentoring is to help owners to develop ideas and strategies in order to grow their businesses. A business mentor supports their mentees in their venture by providing them valuable advice on how to develop a business that is innovative and sustainable, how to deal with common challenges as well as those unique to their business, and how to attract grants and do networking effectively. 

So, what do mentors do? Mentors reduce the level of risk in your business by guiding you at every step and help you to progress consistently and more quickly by telling you where to focus your time and energy, what tasks to prioritize, and how to look for new opportunities and develop the skills you need in order to succeed.

How Does Business Mentoring Help Someone’s Business?

Business mentoring helps business owners by offering direction and advice on how to grow their business and take it to the next level. Business mentors challenge their mentees to grow by asking tough questions and encouraging them to find solutions to their problems. 

A business mentor is someone who has walked in their mentees’ shoes and has run a successful business. Therefore, they have a wide network and connect their mentees to the people they previously did not have access to. Business mentors help their mentees by listening to their ideas and by offering suggestions to make those ideas more innovative and to develop an action plan to implement the ideas.

What Is the Objective of Business Mentoring?

The objective of business mentoring is to help you grow your business by providing guidance, giving advice where needed, and offering constructive feedback. Business mentoring increases your satisfaction with your work and improves your knowledge about the industry. You are able to deal with challenges in a better way and network more efficiently when you have a business mentor on your back. Your mentor in business helps to set goals for your business as well and guides you about making a roadmap to achieve those goals.

Business mentoring provides you with unbiased insight and accountability which is another objective of business mentoring. You as a business owner are able to focus your energy on other things which result in substantial growth when you have a reliable mentor to go to when you face a difficult situation.

What Makes You Qualified to Become a Business Mentor?

Effective communication skills, knowledge, and experience in the relevant field are what makes you qualified to become a business mentor in your area. There are several important skills that you need to have to become an effective mentor, such as active listening, being able to communicate your ideas, empathy, and problem-solving. So, what is a business mentor? A business mentor needs to have developed their business from scratch so that their mentees are aware that they have walked in their shoes and be able to trust them.

You need to be open and ready to share what helped you succeed in your business as a mentor. You must have a wide network as well so that you are able to connect your mentees with important people and inform them about opportunities. You are not a paid consultant or a coach, despite the benefits you offer your mentees and the mentoring role you play. You are just someone who mentees trust to go to when they face a challenging situation and need advice on how to deal with it.

How Important Is Mentoring for a Business?

Mentoring is extremely important for business because mentors provide guidance based on real-world experience. A business mentor provides you with specially tailored advice to solve your business problems that other people in your circle are unable to provide. Business mentors have more experience than you, therefore, they give you expert advice using the vast industry knowledge they have accumulated over the years. You are able to expand your network and build useful connections with the help of a resourceful business mentor. Lastly, mentors are the trusted go-to persons you do not find inside your company, so you are able to benefit from unbiased insight from someone who has no ulterior motives.

Is a Mentor’s Qualification to Have a Business?

Yes, the qualification of a business mentor is to have developed a business, as well as experience in running it smoothly and making it successful. A business mentor is able to be successful only because they have walked the walk. They have made mistakes in the past and they are aware of how to deal with those mistakes. It is the job of a business mentor to share lessons from their experience so that their mentees are able to avoid mistakes and repeat the patterns that led to the growth of the business.

Difference Between Business Coaching and Mentoring

What Are the Similarities Between Coaching and Mentoring?

The main similarity between coaching and mentoring is that both of them focus on relationship building. Other similarities between coaching and mentoring are that they both require similar skills on the part of the coach or mentor and both have the same goal: to arm the coachee or mentee with the skills they need. Some of the similarities when it comes to coaching vs. mentoring are given below.

Difference Between Business Coaching and Mentoring

Why Does Someone Choose a Business Coach?

Business owners or leaders usually choose a business coach because they are confident about their abilities but are unable to identify the gaps in their knowledge and find it hard to set clear, actionable goals. A business coach holds you accountable, keeps you motivated, and helps you to make effective strategies in order to support you in reaching where you want to be as a business owner. You choose a business coach when you need a fresh perspective and want to get rid of limiting beliefs that are holding you back.

So, how to find a business coach? Ask for referrals from people in your network or do a search online. Be sure the coach has the necessary qualifications and/or experience and ask for a consultation to check whether they are the best fit for your needs. 

Why Does Someone Choose a Business Mentor?

Entrepreneurs and leaders choose a mentor to support them when they need advice from an experienced individual who has once dealt with something similar to themselves. Business mentors are chosen for several other reasons as well, such when a business owner or a leader needs to build connections and use some resources but is unable to spend a lot on it, they seek help from a business mentor who provides them with what they need but mostly without a price tag.

So, how to choose a business mentor? Choose a business mentor who has vast knowledge about the industry due to the years they have put in working in it and are therefore able to provide guidance when you make a tricky decision. They must act as a sounding board for your ideas and help you to choose the ones that are easily implementable yet bring results.

Is a Business Mentor Cheaper Than a Business Coach?

Yes, a business mentor is cheaper than a business coach in some cases. Whether a business mentor is cheaper than a business coach depends on where you find the business mentor. A business mentor guides you for free if they are someone you know well, or have a close connection with you in some way; e.g., they are a family member or an old friend from work. On the other hand, a business mentor that you specifically hire in order to help you in your business typically charges around $200 per hour or $800 per month. Their fee varies depending on the time they give you and the number of meetings you have per month.

Are Business Coaches Paid to Provide Results?

Yes, business coaches are paid to provide results. The quality of executive coaching is assessed on the basis of the post-coaching performance of the coachees, improvement in engagement and overall well-being, improvement in learning, and return on investment. Business coaches are paid on the basis of their experience in the field as well as perceived ROI on the services they provide. 

Alexis Fedor

Founder & CEO

Alexis Fedor

Founder & CEO

Alexis Fedor is an award winning performance artist and writer from New York City. She is the founder of Artists In Business, a company focused on helping artists create online businesses with their art through online courses and group coaching. Alexis is the creator of the renowned Profit Canvas Mentorship, which has helped hundreds of artists create profitable businesses with their art, and the AIB Jumpstart, a membership experience designed to help artists get their businesses prepped for profitability. Alexis lives in New York City among many friends, family, and two cats.