Believe it or not, I wasn’t actually born a leadership coach. In fact, in 2001, I had established myself as a senior change leader and organizational strategist and was busy building an international strategy consultancy when I read a cover story in Fortune magazine featuring a talented blond executive coach based in California, Cynder Niemela. She graced the magazine in a photo featuring her waving from the deck of her beautiful boat. The article outlined the benefits of working with a coach and profiled top coaches already making a name for themselves in this new field. I read the article with fascination. It wasn’t just that this coach was living her dreams working with top clients by phone from her boat, it was the whole concept of being paid to work one-on-one with people to help them achieve their highest potential. I was electrified as I read the article. At last I’d found the profession that I was born to do.
So, what happened next? First, I decided to find out how valuable coaching really was. I picked up the phone and dialed up the coach from Fortune magazine. I hired her to coach me in my new executive job, paying out of pocket although it was a stretch for me. I wanted to learn from the very best – and find out if this career was for me while simultaneously acing the challenging goals of my new vice president job. Working with Cynder, I experienced her outstanding coaching - to the great benefit of my employer and my own self-confidence. After that, I applied to Georgetown’s leadership coaching program, where I teach and co-direct today. Hiring the best was a real investment in myself and in the future that I wanted. Learning from the best helped me set the bar high for myself. My coach modeled qualities and practices that I still use in my own coaching practice today.
This year, the Kidscreen Summit Master Class is a Leadership Training Day that features people who’ve led the industry, bringing vision, innovation and real leadership to the kids’ media space. They’ve taken risks, created hits and developed themselves and others to follow their passions.
I invite you personally to learn from the best in your field by signing up for the Leadership Training Day. I know you’ll come away with far more than your own career vision – you’ll also have the insights, wisdom and lessons learned of talented pacesetters who are willing to share their stories to support you in writing your own.