Much has been written and talked about coaching, but many are quite unclear how is coaching distinctively different from training. Many confuse the two. While both involve learning processes and are complimentary to each other, they have different approaches and serve different purposes.
- Training involves the transfer of knowledge and skills from the trainer to the student. Here the trainer is the expert. In coaching, the coach may or may not be the expert. Instead of giving direct answers, he listens to the coachee and ask powerful questions. He facilitates the learning process and co-create the future for the coachee.
- The training perspective is the students lack skills or knowledge. Training is focusing on providing the ‘externals’. The coaching perspective is the coachees are not dysfunctional and have everything they need to succeed. Coaching involves removing the ‘inner’ roadblocks.
- Training is typically done in groups. Coaching is usually done one on one. The coach designs the learning processes according to individuals’ needs.
- Training is done in a short-term period. Coaching is normally a mid to long-term process with the coachee.
Coaching and training support each other in equipping learners and propelling them towards their goals. In a game like tennis, think of training as developing skills on how to serve, hit the ball, movement and all the technicalities involved which are extrinsic. Coaching is about the application of the skills, motivation and overcoming the ‘inner’ obstacles to success which are all intrinsic.