In a coaching social media group, a member recently posted the following:
“If you have the perfect expertise for your client’s challenges and see an easy solution, do you share that solution with your client?”
Nice trap, I thought. She’s baiting the consultants—masquerading in coach’s clothing—to reveal themselves, and reveal they did.
“It would be okay to discuss a solution, as long as it was effective.”
“In the spirit of direct communication, it can be done.”
“Yes, a coach can definitely share resources if they are helpful.”
Doesn’t taking this direction make you a consultant, not a coach? Consultants share expert knowledge. They are paid to provide answers, whereas coaches challenge clients to find their own solutions, using artful facilitation and empowerment. Coaching is founded on the belief that clients have the answers they need and the ability to find them without having them handed over on a silver platter. Discovering solutions is empowering. Hand-delivered solutions are efficient, and often desired, but not empowering.