My full-time executive coaching work began in Asia where I learned to coach by listening deeply to what was said and not said, and where I learned to appreciate a range of cultural contexts that shaped a client’s leadership. The relationships were rich, cross-cultural and generative. These coaching relationships were just like any other coaching engagement, and at the same time, they were an important reminder not to make assumptions about the leader or the corporate culture. Since then, I have coached leaders across a range of identities and geographies, from junior executives to the C-Suite. We learn together – how this leader interacts, reacts and understands their context in ways that subvert what they hope for themselves and their teams. Together we discover who they are as leaders, where they are in their development and what support is needed next. Over time, I noticed that clients began to come to me not only for leadership strategies, but for developmental coaching, straight speak, experiential exercises, and the language and tools that help leaders guide their own development.
I also have an interest in the intimacy and learning created in transformational leadership programs. Years ago, I loved my work as faculty through University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business’ ‘Possibility Thinking’ program and Duke University’s Global Leadership course for young people in North Carolina, Shanghai and Beijing. I continue to do this work because I feel called to it, but I also am convinced that this work changes careers and often the lives of participants. More recent programs such as Women’s Leader Circles and the Leading Inclusively Lab were created to meet an important need during crucial moments where leaders feel they are at their very edge, in need of a healing community and/or in over their heads.