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  Differences between Mentor and Coach


“There is a great man who makes every man feel small. But the real great man is the man who makes every man feel great.” –G.K. Chesterton

The difference between “mentors” and “coaches” may not seem obvious. In fact, most people don’t even realize there is a distinction between the two.

A coach focuses on short-term development, with emphasis on enhancing current skills or on acquiring new skills. A coach does not share their personal concerns or experience, but rather proposes methods to enhance the coachee’s understanding of their own self.

Coachee generally know what is the right or appropriate thing to do. Often your job is to draw the answer out of the individual. If you give the person the answer, she/he is less likely to own and fully enroll in the solution or answer.

Good coaches create a safe space to have an open discussion, ask the right questions (and genuinely listen to the answers), and constructively challenge.

When you coach, you aren’t just comparing stated objectives with a list of accomplishments. You’re helping people better understand the consequences of their actions and see when there is a disconnect between what they wanted to accomplish and what actually happened. It requires you be able to put yourself in their shoes and interpret various situations.

At a Reps level, we are changing the way that we work before. Rather than helping your mentee with her/his budget request, we want that you help your peers to challenge themselves to be better and have a personal development meanwhile they help Mozilla’s mission.

Generally, a coach/coachee relationship is focus only on personal development. But we are working on Mozilla’s context, so we will working not only on their skills, but how those skills function inside the organization and help advance the mission.


Credit: material is adapted from here.