The Definition of Coaching – 31 Words or Phrases to Define a Coach

Scouring the Internet, you will find many different experts providing their opinion on the definition of coaching. None of them are wrong and almost all of them are right – coaching means different things to different people. The are a million and one definitions of coaching and all of them have some validity.

There are also many words or phrases that can be used when composing a definition of coaching. Once again, you may not agree with all of them, and I may not agree with all of them, but it doesn’t make them wrong. A coach can mean many different things to many different people – that’s why the field is so wide open for creative people to hang out a shingle and become an effective and highly sought-after coach. Coaches have many different styles and work in a variety of different niches. It is a great field because you can be who you want to be while helping people and making money!

The Definition of a Coach- 31 Definitions

  1. Motivator
  2. Inspirational leader
  3. Mentor
  4. Performance enhancer
  5. Babysitter ( yes, some coaches do this!)
  6. Assessor
  7. Evaluator
  8. Problem solver
  9. Problem finder
  10.  Instructor
  11. Educator
  12. Tutor
  13. Consultant
  14. Counselor, but not exactly
  15. Confidant
  16. Sort of a therapist, but not really
  17. Trainer
  18. Advisor
  19. Someone who gets you to do things you wouldn’t do by yourself
  20. Someone who gets you to think about things you would never think about without some serious prodding
  21. Spiritual guide
  22. Behavior modifier
  23. Peer mentor
  24. Someone who helps a client set goals you could really set yourself but you have no idea where to begin
  25. Someone with professional experience who can provide guidance in a time of crisis
  26. Some who gets paid to listen to your whining and complaining
  27. Someone who gets paid to offer suggestions, exercises, opinions, assessments, and guidance after you are done whining and complaining
  28. Facilitator
  29. Trainer
  30. Motivational speaker
  31. Someone with the knowledge, skills, passion, and intuition to help you assess your life, determine your strengths and weaknesses, analyze your situation, figure out your passions, prod you into articulating your goals and dreams, and then give you a bunch of BS as to how you need to figure out the pathway to success, achievement, and happiness

Yes, a coach cannot do it all. It is a partnership in which the coach provides some professional expertise, specific knowledge, and passion for helping people, while the client provides the dedication, determination, and ultimately the solutions. The definition of a coach doesn’t include doing for someone what they can do for themselves. The definition of coaching doesn’t include providing someone with the answers, but it does include helping someone find the answers themselves. Coaching is dynamic, adaptable, and vital. Coaching has many definitions – choose one definition that works for you and become the best coach you can be.

By the way… you’re invited to claim your FREE step-by-step “Life Coaching Business Blueprint” video toolkit. Just go HERE now to get your life coaching business blueprint videos.

Dave Iuppa
JTS Advisors Strategy and Accountability Coach

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Facebook comments:


  1. says

    Hi Jeffrey:

    I totally agree with this statement: The definition of coaching doesn’t include providing someone with the answers, but it does include helping someone find the answers themselves.

    That is such a great definition of what it means to be a coach.


  2. says

    I have always thought of a coach as a guide. They cannot make your decisions for you, but they certainly can help you find what you need to do. This is a really good list. 🙂

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