Mentor coaching is a term used by the International Coach Federation (ICF) to describe a form of coaching specifically for the purposes of becoming credentialled by the ICF.
If you are considering appling for an ICF credential through the portfolio route (as opposed to through attendance at ICF accredited training) or for the renewal of a credential, you are required to have a minimum of 10 hours mentor coaching, over a minimum of 3 months, by a qualified Mentor Coach.
At least 3 of these hours must be one to one mentor coaching. Up to 7 of these hours can be gained through group mentor coaching, where there is a maximum of 10 participants.
The ICF defines mentor coaching as 'Coaching for the development of one's coaching, rather than coaching for personal development or coaching for business development...'
It's purpose is specifically to prepare you for the ICF credentialling exam.
It differs from coach supervision in that it has this very specific purpose, whereas coach supervision helps a coach to reflect on all aspects of their coaching practice and may include a wide range of other factors that impact upon their practice as a coach.
A coach mentor must hold ICF certification at the same or a higher level than you are applying for. For example if you are applying to become credentialled at ACC (Associate Certified Coach) then they must possess credentials at ACC level themselves, or PCC (Professional Certified Coach) or MCC (Master Certified Coach). These different levels reflect the experience of the coach as measured by the number of officially recorded hours of coaching.
As with choosing a coach you need to ensure that there is a good 'relationship fit' between you and the mentor coach.
You also need to check out their credentials to ensure they fit the criteria discussed above. You might also want to check out that this is a service that they are experienced and passionate about providing. For example how up-to-date are they with the coach credentialling process and what approaches do they use to help their coach clients to prepare themselves for the ICF credentialling exam?
Mentor coaching is one of the services we provide to coaches. If you would like more information either contact me directly on +44 (0)7947 040478 or click here for for more information about how to get in touch.