Good leadership isn't complicated.
A bit about what I do
When I ask people about their work, more often than not their faces contort the same way they do when they step in something unpleasant. When I scratch the surface and dig around to find out what they really think and feel, their answers often leave me wondering how they get through the day, and how their organizations succeed! I find it shocking, not to mention desperately sad, that so many highly-skilled, trained, educated, passionate people feel their work sucks the life out of them.
If you're one of those people, you know exactly what I'm talking about. If you employ people, if you lead a team, it's time to sit up and pay attention.
Create the right conditions and people engage, thrive, grow, and perform at a very high level consistently. The wrong conditions kill enthusiasm, engagement, passion, and success. This isn't complicated. Yet so many leaders and organizations make common mistakes and overlook the fundamental factors that go into creating the conditions for success. Whether an individual leader, team, or an organization, you have the power to create conditions that make you successful and make the impossible possible.
You're probably thinking this all sounds rather 'Kumbaya round the campfire' and 'let's all hold hands and wear the same T-shirt' aren't you? You'd be wrong. This is science. There is a plethora of data supporting the relationship between positive leadership and culture and consistently strong performance. Not just 'average' performance; extraordinary performance.
As an executive coach and organizational culture consultant, I coach and teach leaders and teams how to create the conditions that promote extraordinary performance and achievement. And I teach organizations how to build intentional cultures that breed fierce loyalty, energy, evangelism, and success.
A bit about me
Throughout my Fortune 500 executive career, I enjoyed many successes. I was promoted frequently (at one point, every year for four years), I built and grew multiple multi-million dollar businesses, and I led some of the best teams in the business. And I did it by creating the conditions that allowed me and my teams to thrive and push the boundaries beyond what others believed possible. I always led with belief, passion, enthusiasm, positivity, and massive energy. It was contagious. It worked. And I loved it.
In my two-plus decades of corporate leadership, there was only one occasion where I hit a wall. But it was a wall I'm grateful to have hit because it allowed me to see the 'other side of the coin'. Having only experienced engaging, energetic leaders and fantastic organizational cultures, I was suddenly plunged into - what I referred to as - the 'depths of hell'. 'Toxic' doesn't even come close to describing the environment I found myself in. I had a ringside seat and witnessed the devastation cultural toxicity and unchecked control and command leadership can cause. I watched customers flee to the competition along with many talented employees. It was one of those classic cases of learning a few valuable lessons 'the hard way'.
This experience was my tipping point. If environment determines function, it stands to reason it can also determine dysfunction. I'd long been fascinated with leadership and organizational culture, and I'd focused my MBA thesis on that very subject. That, combined with my leadership experience, brought me to today. There is definitely a right way and a wrong way to be successful and get people to work hard and deliver results. To gain a deeper understanding I studied positive leadership and emotional intelligence, and I dug into Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and learned the theory of leadership, environment, culture, and organizational success. I became certified in coaching, EQi, NLP and CBT and became an executive coach and organizational culture consultant.
I shared my experiences and thoughts through writing and speaking and people responded. My early coaching days were spent working with executives and professionals going through severe stress and burnout. With coaching and counter-intuitive action, I helped people back to highly successful lives in weeks, rather than the months or years it usually takes to bounce back from burnout. As much as I loved the work, it frustrated the heck out of me that anyone should find themselves in an environment that caused such personal and professional devastation. And then I had an epiphany. I realized I was working at the wrong end of the problem. Whilst helping people out of burnout was important, I knew burnout was preventable. So, I started work at the other end of the situation; I started working on with leaders and organizations to create environments where people thrive, grow, and continually succeed.
And that's how I arrived here.
I bring the art and science of positive leadership and culture to leaders, teams, and organizations and teach them how to create consistent performance, competitive advantage, evangelical employees, and long-term success.
A bit about my career
I began life as a Nurse Practitioner in the Cardiac ICU, before moving into the business of healthcare.
During a Fortune 500 career that spanned two decades, two continents, and several countries, I built and grew multiple multi-million dollar businesses, and led several joint ventures, restructures, and mergers. I enjoyed many successful promotions and made it to the executive suite where I enjoyed over thirteen years of highly successful executive commercial leadership. Working through the ranks from Sales Representative to Commercial VP to General Manager, and now business owner, I know what it takes to succeed at all levels, build extraordinary teams, and create cultures where people can, and want to work.
I began my career in the United Kingdom and spent time living and working in Central Europe, Northern Ireland, and then North America, where I settled and made my home. I live with my French-Canadian husband, bilingual son, and unilingual dog.
Whilst I'm still a true Brit at heart, I can devour a Thanksgiving turkey, maple taffy, and poutine with the best of them!
The official bit
I have an MBA from the University of Leicester, where I studied General Management and pursued an academic specialization in organizational behaviour and leadership. I conducted primary research and wrote my thesis on "Corporate Culture and its Effect on Long-Term Economic Performance." For the record, I'm with Peter Drucker on this one: Culture does indeed eat strategy for breakfast.
I am a Certified Organizational Culture Consultant, Professional Certified Coach, NLP Master Practitioner, Certified CBT Practitioner, and I am certified in EQi and EQ360. I also hold a post-graduate certificate in adult education.
I am an MBA mentor for final year MBA students, and an active, long-standing member of the Faculty of Business Advisory Panel at a local business school.
Throughout my corporate career, I trained extensively in sales, sales negotiations, communications techniques, leadership, and coaching.
Lastly, I am fully media trained and have extensive experience in engaging, inspiring, and motivating audiences on camera, radio, and on stage.
When I'm not working I spend hours in my kitchen playing around with food and creating meals my family, thankfully, love to eat. But life is about balance, so to stay fit and strong - and to allow me eat just about whatever I want - I practice and teach karate regularly. I hold two black belts in Shito Ryu Karate, and I am a Martial Arts Therapist.