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Traction Inc.

29 Nov Business Coaching vs. Consulting: Is there a difference?

Posted at 8:00:00 AM by Chris Hallberg

No matter how well your business is running there's always room for improvement. Whether it's more sales, greater customer satisfaction or increased employee performance, your business likely needs a boost. This is where business coaching and consulting can play a vital role. Before deciding how to utilize these services it's important to understand the differences between business coaching and consulting.

What is a Business Coach?

A business coach usually works one-on-one with employees or the leader of your business. According to Forbes, a business coach will guide you toward developing the resources and skills necessary to be successful. A coach can assist you through all phases of running a business. This can include just getting your business off the ground, while it's growing or if you're developing a new product. A coach is a partner that will work with you on a personal level that will ultimately affect every area of your business.

What is a Business Consultant?

A business consultant normally works with an entire group or team. A consultant often has an area of specific expertise that he or she brings to the table. The National Center for the Middle Market states that business consultants may specialize in areas such as marketing, operations and HR. A business consultant will help you set goals in these specific areas and help you form a detailed plan to reach them. A business consultant can help you put an idea into practice, save time and money or motivate your employees.


Business Coach vs. Consultation

Before deciding what type of assistance your business needs it's important to understand the specific differences between business coaches and consultants. While there may be some areas of coaching and consultation that will overlap, there are definitely a wide variety of differences.


  • Both coaches and consultants are individuals from outside the business.
  • Both bring knowledge and expertise in a variety of areas.
  • Both can help you reach goals and improve your business.


  • A coach enables the individual he or she is working with to solve problems while a consultant is the expert that will solve problems for the team.
  • A coach will address issues such as fear or limited self-confidence. A consultant will generally help with problems that are directly related to your business.
  • A consultant will analyze data and then decide what needs to be done while a coach will facilitate and nurture growth in the individual.
  • A consultant usually works with a team for a limited time on a specific project. A coach, however, will normally work with an individual or group for a longer period of time. The coach is focused on overall growth and long-term results.

In summary, coaches will teach the person they are working with to ultimately accomplish tasks on their own while the consultant will often accomplish tasks and make decisions for the group. Understanding how to find the right business coach or consultant will be imperative to making your business as successful as possible.

Download the Introduction to The Business Sergeant’s Field Manual 

Choosing Which One is Right for You

When deciding whether you need a business coach vs. consultation it's important to keep several things in mind. Do you need advice or guidance for a short-term project? Are you looking for a fresh perspective and creativity in certain areas of your business? If this is the case then a consultant may be the way to go.

Do you know what needs to get done but you're just not sure how to accomplish it? Do you need a confidante who knows how to pinpoint your strengths and bring out your best qualities so you can reach several goals, not just finish one project? These are the types of things that will likely require the skills of a business coach.

Choosing the Right One for Your Business

There are several tips to keep in mind when choosing the right coach or consultant for your business.

  • Client Reviews - What kind of track record does the coach or consultant have? Great reviews and testimonies from happy clients are a sign that the coach or consultant has the ability to help a variety of businesses reach their goals.
  • Extensive Experience - Does the coach or consultant have a well-rounded background and years of experience in several areas? Does the individual have experience both in the business world and as a coach or consultant?
  • Offers a Free Consultation - Providing a free consultation is necessary so you can find out before making a commitment if the person is a good fit for your business.
  • Provides EOS Coaching - The Entrepreneurial Operating System® provides a set of business tools that allows all the parts of your business to come together to achieve the results you're looking for. EOS® includes focusing on critical components such as data, people and the vision for your business. You need someone who knows how to successfully implement EOS®.

Moving Your Business in the Right Direction

After you've decided between a business coach vs. consultation, getting personalized attention from your professional business adviser can help your business reach new goals and soar to heights you hadn't previously imagined. Once you've made the decision to work with a coach or a consultant it's crucial to find the right individual. 

If your business needs a new direction, a boost to keep it going in the right direction or a complete overhaul, Chris Hallberg has the expertise to help you take your business in the right direction. Contact Chris today to take your business leadership to the next level with business development training.

Topics: Business Coaching