Executive Coaches and mentors can seem similar, but they are pretty different. A coach literally “coaches” you in specific areas that they are trained or specialized in, while mentors typically offer guidance and advice from their personal experiences. Mentors can help you think about personal and business challenges, while Executive Coaches are often focused on your performance as a founder or executive. Importantly, Executive Coaches are typically paid, whereas mentors do so on a volunteer basis.
Mentoring can be topic specific or based on your personal needs. Peer Mentors tend to be someone your own age, so you’re going through the fire together. Experience Mentors may be someone older, perhaps they’re in the spot you wish to be 5 years from now and can give you some helpful tips. Topic Area Mentors are experts in a specific topic, like fundraising, or in a specific industry, like healthcare, and they can show you the ropes. Pro-bono advice is also considered a type of mentorship, such as pro-bono legal or accounting advice, which will come in handy for most startups
Mentors a great way to gain expertise in areas where you’re not so confident. Perhaps you need advice on financials, or reaching out to customers, or with your marketing - It’s critical to get help from someone that knows the ropes and can save you from making the same mistakes they made when they were starting out. Plus, mentors can often open doors and make connections for you, which can be super helpful for your business