Want to hire a business coach or business advisor but don’t know the difference? You’re definitely not alone! With all of the buzzwords and jargon, it’s hard to keep track of the nuanced differences when it comes to pretty much everything business-related. That’s what we’re here to help you with. In this blog, we’re going to go over the differences between a business coach and a business advisor.
Then, we’ll try to help you answer the big question: Which one is right for you?
Let’s get started!
What is a business coach?
A business coach is someone who has lots of experience in business and has transitioned from working in a traditional business role to helping other entrepreneurs grow their businesses. Business coaches help you develop your skills in a variety of ways. For example, a business coach might help you with goal-setting and productivity by helping you set goals and create a productive work plan. Similarly, business coaches often help you see your strengths and weaknesses and figure out how to move past your obstacles. This can include things like time management, hiring, delegation, and more — pretty much anything you can think of! While the actual things they help you with and methods may vary, the overall goal of a business coach is to help you grow and scale your business. So, while you might talk about your personal development goals, everything is with a close eye on how to improve your business.
Most business coaches won’t actually implement anything in your business. Typically, they work alongside you to help you figure out what you need to do to improve and reach your goals.
There are exceptions to this, however. For example…
- Our CEO, Kimjera Whittington, is a Certified Business Made Simple Coach and a Certified StoryBrand Guide (you can check out how she coaches here!).
- We have a lot of clients come to us because they need help with StoryBrand and their brand messaging.
- Kimjera serves as a sort of business coach for them and coaches them on how to improve their business by using StoryBrand techniques.
- If they choose to, Evolve Global Marketing can also implement StoryBrand for them, and that’s when Kimjera moves beyond being a business coach and we do the implementation.
- See how it works?
It’s really important that you have a good relationship with your business coach because you need to be able to trust their opinion. Business coaches might feel personally invested in your success and in our opinion, it’s best to work with a coach who actually cares about helping you succeed! You don’t want to be just a random client to them and you want to have a great relationship.
What is a business advisor?
A business advisor serves a different purpose than a business coach, but often with similar goals: to help you grow and scale your business. Instead of focusing on your personal development, business advisors only focus on the business aspect. Typically, they’ll help you develop the strategy to improve your business. They may specialize in a specific area like finance, marketing, or sales. So, if you need help with a specific part of your business, you can find a business advisor who focuses on that.
While a business advisor does help you lay the groundwork for achieving your business goals, they won’t necessarily help hold you accountable as a business coach does. A business coach is more invested in your success while a business advisor is only hired with an eye on the business. That doesn’t mean that your business advisor does not care about your business, however. You still want to have a good, trustworthy relationship with your business advisor. You’re investing money in hiring them so you want to know that they’ll actually be able to help you. Business advisors just might function a little less personal than business coaches do.
For example, our CEO Kimjera functions as a business advisor when she works with businesses as a StoryBrand Certified Guide. By advising on their marketing strategy, she helps businesses figure out what they need to do to improve and reach their business goals. Similar to business coaches, business advisors don’t usually do the implementation, though you might be able to find one that advises strategy and goes on to implement after.
Business Coach vs. Business Advisor: Which is right for me?
Deciding whether you need a business coach or business advisor is determined by your personal and business goals. Here are some questions that you can ask yourself when thinking about your options:
- Do I want someone to help me with my professional development?
- Do I need someone who can help me figure out my strengths and weaknesses?
- Am I having trouble seeing my gaps as a leader?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you should hire a business coach.
- Am I having trouble seeing what gaps my business has?
- Do I want someone who will focus on my business strategy?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you could hire either a business advisor or a business coach, depending on your answers to the other questions.
- Do I want to work with someone who will not help me with professional development, only with my business strategy?
- Do I have a very specific business problem in an area that needs a subject matter expert?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you should hire a business advisor.
As you can see, the question of business coach vs. business advisor is 100% dependent on what you want and need for your business. We hope this article helped you gain clarity on the differences between business coaches and business advisors. Any questions? Drop them in the comments below, we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.