Providing High Quality Coaches and Mentors

“Trust is essential for a close relationship, along with willingness by both partners to reveal themselves and to risk making mistakes.” - Marcy Whitebook As Marcy Whitebook points out in a recent article, trust and experience is essential to a coaching or mentoring relationship. Whitebook is the Director at the Center for the Study of Child Care Employment in the Institute for Research on Labor and Employment at the University of California, Berkeley, and her article focuses mostly on young children.

She writes that for a successful pairing to take place, a coach or mentor must have notable experience working with young children and knowledge about adult learning and teacher development. Whitebook is careful to point out the difference between coaching and mentoring. She explains that there are important distinctions between the two. While mentors usually work on the individual development of a teacher, setting goals with that teacher and working toward them, coaches focus more on cohorts and sometimes individuals, usually with a more broad agenda for the group. In practice, more often than not, these roles become blended.

What are the other differences between a coach and a mentor? How is trust integral to either of those relationships?