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Executive Coaching is Not Therapy, but it is Therapeutic

Executive Coaching is Not Therapy, but it is Therapeutic

Welcome to the fourth article in a Series about Executive Coaching called “What Coaching is Not”…

There are many benefits to coaching. They begin to accrue in 3 separate phases:

  1. Taking action to interview and hire a coach.
  2. Discussing goal setting and action planning with a professional coach in a series of coaching sessions.
  3. Implementation of the plan and beginning (often after the first couple sessions) to enjoy the results at work, and in your professional life, relationships, advancement, and so on.

Coach…or Therapist?

The first article in this series dealt with the difference between coaching and consulting.

In this post, I differentiate between coaching and psychotherapy, where and how these two important topics intersect, and how this can influence the client’s decision to hire an executive coach.

Executive Coaching is Not Therapy

Certified Professional Coaches (CPC) are taught early on in their training to recognize whether the client can benefit from coaching.

This process is often referred to as “coaching readiness,” and helps to determine if a client is suitable for consulting or if therapy would be a better alternative to executive coaching.

A coaching engagement must be temporarily paused if the coach believes the client is suffering from:

  • anxiety
  • depression
  • mental health disorders

A referral to another appropriate professional is needed, which may include licensed psychologists, psychiatrists, substance abuse counselors, and social workers.

Coaches are instructed to “stay in their lane” and to not cross ethical and professional boundaries that may impede client progress to their goal.

The International Coaching Federation (ICF) requires that coaches understand and apply coaching ethics and standards of care while maintaining the distinctions between coaching, consulting, and psychotherapy.

The coach will explain what the coaching process involves while drafting the coaching agreement. This states what is appropriate for the relationship, such as:

  • the scope of services offered
  • costs and fees
  • roles and responsibilities of the coach, client, and sponsor

Addictions & Disorders: Of Personal Importance to Me

The subject of mental health, personal integrity, and substance abuse is extremely important to me, both personally and professionally.

In my personal life, helping friends and family members recognize and cope with addiction and mental illness has given me a solid foundation that provides context and experience which translates effectively to coaching.

It also provides a personal satisfaction gained from identifying and recognizing how the coach can best help clients reach full potential.

Coaching relies on skills and knowledge gained from the important fields of consulting and therapy. Professional coaches draw from both disciplines to achieve the right balance in support of the client and their needs and goals.

Recognizing that balance early in the relationship assures the client they are with the right professional and addressing the right topic at the exact time required by the coaching client.

My non-medical business background, combined with years of working experience, has allowed me an opportunity to share this valuable knowledge.

Ready to level up your leadership? No matter where you’re located, Mark Daly provides remote executive coaching services to work with your busy schedule.

Book a complimentary consultation with Mark right here.