I just read a fantastic article on the role of coaches in startups. I was working on my own piece on the same subject, but I ran across this article from Dave Bailey on Medium, and he totally nailed it.
The key point that I'd underscore here is that consulting is an attempt to solve a very different problem than coaching. As coaches, we strive to enable builders to build. We don't want to take the wheel and steer -- we'd rather help you improve your driving skills.
Another key point in the article is related to cost.
Moreover, consulting is an extremely expensive way to execute ideas. Consultants charge anything from £350 to £1500 per day. Considering it’s in a startup’s DNA not to spend money, fees like this are out of the question.
Consulting engagements are often measured in weeks so apply at least a 10x multiplier to those daily figures. The startups I talk to would see those numbers as budget busters.
On the other hand, a coaching engagement can deliver noticeable benefit within a few sessions, with a cost lower than a single day of a consultant.
But don't make your choice based purely on cost. The key point for builders, makers, entrepreneurs is that you yourself are part of what you're building. Just as you are constructing a business, you're also inventing yourself as its leader and defining your own role. Finding the right coach is a key enabler in that process.