Business Coaching is more about helping the business owner with skill acquisition. A Business Coach focuses on developing particular skills, to help the business owner achieve short, medium, and long-term business and personal goals, and it is very much performance based.
For example, if your business does not have systems in place, then a business coach can help you acquire and develop this skill in many areas of your business. In the majority of cases though, a Business Coach may have little to no knowledge of your actual profession, which can be a limitation in some circumstances.
If you need a better 'orthotic' delivery system or a more free-flowing system for delivering treatment processes, then this could be a problem for a Business Coach, who lacks knowledge in the area of podiatry and has never treated a patient. However, even without specific knowledge on podiatry, a good Business Coach is still a valuable asset to your business.
A Business Mentor, however, is a person that has particular business skills, and professional expertise, with a certain level of experience, who is prepared to share what they have learnt with others of the same profession. Therefore business mentoring is about transferring knowledge from a more experienced person to a lesser-experienced person.
This is why, as a Business Mentor in podiatry, I have a lot to offer other podiatrists in both business knowledge, and it's application to establishing and running a successful podiatry business, whereas a Business Coach cannot offer this specific knowledge.
In simple terms, a Mentor is someone you learn from, whereas a Coach is someone you learn with, and therefore a Mentor can be a Business Coach, but a Business Coach cannot be a Mentor unless they share the same profession.
You Can Be Both A Mentor & Coach
As I've mentioned I mentor other Podiatrists, but I also work with Dentists, Physiotherapists and Chiropractors. When I work with other health professionals, I refer to myself as a business coach.
Yes, You Can Outgrow Your Mentor & Coach
Over the years I have had numerous Business Coaches & Mentors. Some have been excellent, while others not so good.
Unfortunately, as my business knowledge grew, there's didn't, and I outgrew them and moved on. So don't think that once you have a Mentor or a Coach that you're stuck with them forever because things change, people change and circumstances change, and change is good.
If you feel working with a mentor or coach could be beneficial or you could use some business guidance in the areas of 'systems and marketing', check out my MENTORING page.