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Understanding the roles of mentor, coach and manager

30 March 2017

The mentor, coach and manager are all important in an organization. Although to a lay person, these terms appear similar; in reality, there is quite a difference between each of these. There exists not only a difference in what each term is; there is considerable difference between each of these as regards what role each has in an organization.

Each has a role to perform in bringing about team engagement in the organization and in helping the organization reach greater heights. A mentor, coach and a manager are all required to perform different roles and display their skills in helping the employees produce high quality work and stay motivated while doing so.

Generally, these are how the three roles are performed:

Managing: A manager is well-suited for helping the organization carry out its day-to-day functions. A good manager is a good operations person. A manager is one who helps the organization attain its goals in a systematic and disciplined manner. In the course of helping the organization do this, the manager could be performing a number of tasks, managing people being one of them. The manager is also required to manage a whole host of other functions and activities.

Coaching: A coach is one who partners with the employees and motivates them to reach their goals and enhance their performance. A coach puts various coaching theories into practice and helps the team overcome challenges and obstacles, but rarely sets the goals herself. Coaches are focused on motivating the team and helping the team members attain their specific, set goals. A coach need not be an expert in the skill needed for helping the organization; it is enough if she knows the art of helping people get there.

Mentoring: Mentoring is a process by which the wisdom and intelligence needed for performing are imparted by a person.  Mentoring usually involves “give and take”, meaning the mentor, in the process of mentoring employees in helping them reach their goals, also gains from the mentees in some or another way. Mentors usually do what managements term as handholding for a while after they have identified the talents that needs to be mentored. Usually, mentoring is done over long periods of time.

In all these, it goes without saying that the factor of commonality of the goal and the desired outcome has to be present. Although one may theorize about the nature and role of each of these; each of these is required for organizations for different purposes and for meeting different goals.

Learn the ways of knowing the roles of mentor, coach and manager

How does an organization decide which of these is what it needs? Does it need a mentor, or a coach, or a manager? What is its expectation about each of these roles at different points of time? These and related aspects will be the learning a webinar from TrainHR, a highly popular provider of professional trainings for the human resources area, will be offering.

At this webinar, Valerie Pelan, who has been consulting and providing Executive coaching for over 10 years, at which she has been combining her business experience working in Fortune 100 companies and her experience as an entrepreneur, will be the speaker.

To gain insights on how to understand the nature and role of coaching, mentoring and managing, please register for this webinar by visiting

The differences between mentor, coach and manager

At this webinar, Valerie will show the difference between being a mentor, coach and a manager, and how one can use the skillsets of each of these to engage employees better. She will explain how to manage one’s career using a mentor, coach or a manager.

She will cover the following areas at this session:

o   Learn the different skills to Mentor, Coach, and Manager.

o   Learn the role of a Mentor, Coach and Manager in team engagement and employee loyalty

o   Successful career management by employees means accountability and getting formal and informal feedback

o   Learn how to use all three skills and what to expect from each different role in providing career enhancement

o   Learn the role of feedback from the three different types that can enhance your career.