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Tag: life coaching

#34 Life Coach vs Career Coach: What is the Difference?

November 6th, 2020 by

As you grapple with thoughts such as, “I’m not sure what I should do next”, or “I want a new job,” you may have considered hiring a career coach or a life coach. I will explain the main differences between my work as a life coach vs career coaching so you can decide which is best for your situation.

What is Life Coaching?

My function as an engineering life coach is to help professionals conduct a root cause analysis on their lives. I coach engineers through tough issues whether in the form of layoffs, career dissatisfaction, burnout, or simply feeling lost. Let’s dive into the two types of coaching so you can decide which is best for your situation.

The Life Coaching process is strategic and cognitive. It is applicable to you if you tell yourself:

  • I don’t know what my next career move should be
  • I hate my current job
  • There’s got to be more to life than this
  • Why can’t I find my dream job? (See Post #08)
  • I don’t deserve to be treated like this
  • My management is terrible
  • My life sucks
  • I don’t know if I should go back to school, get a new job, get another cert, or start my own biz
  • I wish I weren’t so stressed all the time
  • I don’t have enough time for everything
  • I’m overwhelmed

As a life coach, I help you get to the root of your issues and problems so you can 1) understand their origin, 2) reframe your situation to a manageable state, 3) decide how to cognitively resolve your problems.

What is Career Coaching?

The Career Coaching process is tactical and operational. It is applicable to you if you tell yourself

  • I want to move to ABC location and find a job there
  • I want XYZ job title with a specific pool of companies
  • I would like help with my interviewing/negotiating skills
  • I’d like someone to hold me accountable in my job search
  • I’m quite sure I know which jobs I will pursue next
  • I’ve dominated my current position and therefore I’m ready to leave
  • I need someone to help me with my resume
  • I’d like someone to tell me what I need to do to secure a job
  • I want help with strengths-finders test results

A career coach is more appropriate for you if your goal is to be matched to your desired job, industry, or company.

The below is a comparison of the main differences between each type of coach.

A Career Coach Offers Tactical Steps Towards the Search for a JobA Life Coach Offers Strategic Steps Towards the Search for Yourself
Refine your resumeRefine your mentality
External job searchInternal self-discovery
Connect with industryConnect with yourself
Plan your next career movePlan your next life move
Negotiation and interview skillsSelf-Confidence and emotional intelligence skills
Acts as accountability partnerTeaches self-accountability
Offers advice, suggestions, tipsDoes not offer advice; leads you to discover answers for yourself
Matches you to an external (dream) jobHelps you create an internal dream life
Life Coach vs Career Coach

Last, I will state that as a life coach, the skills I teach are meta – they are applicable to any area of your life. Essentially, you learn the meta skill of emotional problem-solving and self-awareness, despite prevailing circumstances.

There certainly can be some overlap between life coach vs career coach. This blog explains the high level differences between the two. If you are interested in free life coaching to help with unresolved issues in your life, send me a note. Let’s chat!

I invite you to follow me on LinkedIn and subscribe to my Youtube channel for additional coaching insights!