Business coaching success meeting

What’s the Difference Between Coaching and a Consultant?

01/10/23 1:50 PM
Ryan Palevsky
Dental Practice Coaching, Dental Practice Consulting, Dental Practice Management

Transforming your dental practice is no easy feat. That is why so many dentists seek outside help business coaching when they make the decision to effect change in their business. If you’ve been debating between hiring a coach or a consultant to help you achieve your goals, this article can help you choose the right person for your needs.

We break down the differences between these two roles and share how NextLevel Practice’s preferred methodology — personalized coaching — can work for you. First, however, let’s clear up some of the confusion surrounding coaching and consulting.

How Are Coaches and Consultants Alike?

Coaching and consulting are often confused because of their similarities on a broader level. At their core, both are intended to support business growth and development. As such, you will note some similarities, including:

  • Coaches and consultants are both brought on to help solve a problem or support change management
  • Both types of support come from outside the organization in order to gain the clearest picture of challenges and opportunities
  • Both provide advice and strategic support (although we will discuss how that differs further on)

Now that you know how they are similar, let’s explore what sets them apart.

Engagement: Personal Empowerment for Business Empowerment

One of the reasons that NextLevel uses a coaching approach in lieu of a consulting strategy is that dentists need more than a plan — they need encouragement and ongoing, personalized support. Dentistry is a difficult field — many of the patients do not want to be there and there is little recognition of dentistry’s contribution to systemic health. It can be discouraging and lonely, especially when you’re the sole dentist in your practice or struggling to achieve your business goals.

How Does Dental Practice Coaching Solve the Problem?

We spend a lot of our formative years being praised for success. It’s a proven method for helping kids grow and thrive. Once we hit adulthood, we decide that adults no longer need encouragement; they should just know they are doing a good job without any outside input. Why is that? Does positive affirmation somehow stop working on people in their early twenties? Absolutely not. The reality is that everyone, including dentists/business owners, can use a boost and a show of appreciation.

It’s important to clarify that coaching with encouragement doesn’t mean coddling or sweeping problems under the rug. It truly is about empowering you to solve those problems by:

A. Helping you recognize you have the skills to transform your life.
B. Showing you that you have the courage to do it.

No Binders, Just Solid, Person-to-Person Engagement

When it comes to supporting your practice goals, would you rather have someone who talks to you for just a few days and leaves a list of recommendations or someone willing to work alongside you? If you’re of the former group, that’s perfectly fine. Some business owners just need a to-do list. However, there are many others who need more person-to-person interaction in order to succeed. Think of it as the difference between a visual learner and an auditory learner.

Why is Coaching Better for Dental Professionals?

Coaching is, if nothing else, a people-centered career. Think of any great sports team and then look to their coach. Where are they each game, each practice? Right there, working alongside the team. They get to know their players and use that knowledge to help them utilize their strengths in the game and in life.

Coaching works the same for a dentist as it does for a top athlete. A coach will get down in the dirt with you and your team. They provide face-to-face engagement through personalized meetings, interactive education, real-time problem solving, and an honest assessment of your progress. At NextLevel, a coach will get to know your practice and meet with you for intensive coaching sessions to ensure you get the live support you need to move forward in your goals.

Jumpstart Your Practice with Coaching from NextLevel

If you’re seeking support for blowing past the hurdles in your practice so you can finally achieve the growth and profits that match the level of your hard work, give NextLevel a call.

Our Launch Program can jumpstart your progress by helping you dissect your practice to find and fix key issues holding you back from running the practice of your dreams, and the coaches in our Leading Dentist program use advice, encouragement and analysis grounded in decades of experience in the dental industry.

We can help you grow a practice that gives you all that you deserve.