Life Coach Vs. Executive Coach

Feb 05, 2018

Life coaches and executive coaches are coaches that typically work with different clients. Both use coaching techniques to motivate their clients to learn and change so that they can accomplish specific objectives.

Comparing Life Coaches to Executive Coaches

Although life coaches may help some individuals with work-related goals they can also work with people on a number of other personal goals. Executive coaches specifically concentrate on employment-related goals.

Job Title Educational Requirements Median Salary (2016)* Job Outlook (2016-2026)*
Life Coaches High school diploma or GED $46,099 13% (rehabilitation counselors)
8% (personal care and service workers, all other)
Executive Coaches Master's degree $95,000 13% (school and career counselors)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Responsibilities of Life Coaches vs. Executive Coaches

Life coaches and executive coaches both meet with clients, evaluate their clients and help identify their clients' specific goals. Life coaches and executive coaches may both develop action plans designed to promote the success of their client. They can spend a lot of time interacting with clients. The key distinction is that life coaches may work on a wide range of personal or workplace goals while executive coaches focus on working with managers and executives and other employees in their workplace environment. Executive coaches may spend time at businesses to meet with individuals and implement coaching strategies, while the specific tasks that a life coach may do could vary based on their client's objectives. For example, a life coach working with a client with weight loss goals may spend time observing them throughout their day to identify situations that prompt them to eat or ways to include more physical activity in their routine.

Life Coaches

Life coaches are professionals who help people set and reach specific goals, which may be personal or professional. They need strong communication and interpersonal skills because they spend their time working with a variety of individuals. They also need good problem-solving skills in order to find out what motivates the people they're working with so that they can use the right tactics with them. Some life coaches opt to concentrate on a specific area of coaching and may primarily work with managers or individuals with weight loss goals. Those who are self-employed may also be responsible for administrative tasks. Although there currently aren't any specific training requirements for these professionals, a broad base of education and experience can lead to more opportunities as a life coach and earning certification as a life coach is recommended.

Job responsibilities of a life coach include:

  • Assessing their client's current situation
  • Developing a plan
  • Identifying activities that can lead to goal achievement
  • Meeting with clients
  • Monitoring their clients' progress

Executive Coaches

Executive coaches work with employees to help them achieve work-related goals. Although it's common for them to work with executives and managers, they may work with other employees as well. Since they spend a lot of time interacting with others they need to have strong communication and interpersonal skills. They need analytical skills to be able to assess situations effectively. They also need to have strong leadership skills so that they can inspire executives and other employees.

Job responsibilities of an executive coach include:

  • Meeting with clients
  • Identifying desired outcomes for each client
  • Clarifying obstacles
  • Promoting willingness to learn
  • Helping clients embrace philosophical changes

Related Careers

If being a life coach sounds appealing but you're most interested in working with people with fitness and weight-loss related goals you may also want to consider being a certified personal trainer. Another career option for aspiring executive coaches is a career development specialist, since they help people prepare for a desired career.

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