The 99%

No, this isn’t about the 1% or the Occupy Movement. It’s about the 99% satisfaction rate with coaching.

The international body that oversees the coaching profession, the International Coaches Federation (ICF), released this nice visual from their global study that shows that virtually everyone they surveyed – 99% – was satisfied with their coaching experience.

I’m not surprised to see that IMPROVED SELF CONFIDENCE was noted as the goal that was met most often in coaching. I see clients walk away feeling genuinely empowered in a way that changes they way they will be going forward.

86% of companies say they make back at least the investment they made in their employee’s coaching.

Click HERE for the fun one-sheet visual on all this.


Leading Leadership

I’m leading leadership right now and it’s a BLAST! I’m working closely with a couple of talented individuals to design, create, and deliver a leadership institute that kicks off at the end of this month. The Executive Directors Leadership Institute will bring together an intimate cohort of executive directors from the Los Angeles nonprofit community in a year-long program. How does this differ from other similar sounding programs? It has a three-prong model of executive coaching, training, and peer support.

This program has an excellent track history ever since it was founded at Executive Service Corps several years ago, having graduated many nonprofit CEOs from all parts of the sector. I look forward to working with an excellent team to build the best leadership program ever!

Stay tuned for more as the program unfolds in the upcoming weeks and months.

Courage through Coaching

What does it mean to coach in the nonprofit sector? And what the heck is all that coaching you hear me talk about that I do through the Liberty Hill Foundation? Well, read on…. this is my post, “Courage through Coaching”, in the Liberty Hill Foundation’s blog that came out this week.  Click here.

Felicia Jones and me

I heart Telemarketing. No joke.

Have you ever enjoyed your conversation with a telemarketer so much that you hoped they would call you again? Have you had such a positive experience with a telemarketer that you felt compelled to call THEM again to complete a pleasant conversation you had previously?  What alternate universe would you have to live in for this to be even remotely possible?

When I was the development director of a public radio station, the telemarketing company I contracted with for our membership renewal campaign provided such excellent customer service AND employed smart, fun, interesting and knowledgable employees that the situations I described above actually happened.

The first time I received a call from one of our donors requesting the name and the phone number of the telemarketer that called her the previous evening, my heart sank.  I knew I was about to be chewed out like I had been many times before at my previous organization. I was shocked to learn she actually wanted to follow up with her previous night’s caller about an an interesting topic in their conversation… just for fun.

Recently, I received the very sad news that my main contact at this telemarketing company, the founder and Executive Vice President, unexpectedly passed away. While I had been bad at keeping in touch with him after I no longer worked at the radio station, I thought often about the remarkable service he offered the numerous public broadcasting stations across the country. I also miss his corny jokes, his love of life, our shared interests in music and baseball. He was a true colleague and business partner who believed that my organization’s success was his. He bent over backwards to make it work. Who would ever think that one person could alter the way we look at an industry that is plagued with a sleazy reputation? Thank you, Bob.

How Mozilla opened up my mind

Recently I was asked to assist with a two-day leadership development workshop in Half Moon Bay for staff at Mozilla. My first reaction was to be thrilled at this new exciting, out-of-town opportunity. My second reaction was “Wait, I’m a non-profit consultant/coach… why should I be working with Mozilla?” For the next couple of days, I sought the advice of a few respected non-profit friends and asked them what they thought about me going to “the dark side” and helping a huge for-profit company flourish when my time could be spend helping those who are more in need and in my opinion more deserving.

My wise friend Angelica, who has worked in non-profits for almost her entire career and has recently started her own, encouraged me to take the gig and reminded me that the non-profit sector can benefit from learning from the for-profit sector’s successes. She encouraged me to “Go learn what they do, steal their ideas, and bring it back to us!” And I know that’s so true… we could all learn from each other, and each sector has something to teach to the others. In fact, why don’t we challenge ourselves to share more in that way? Why don’t I actively seek out lessons from non-nonprofit folks? Obviously I have a serious hang up to the point where I am close minded when I often pride myself in my open-mindedness.

As I was contemplating my narrow mindedness, my friend Rudy humbled me even further. “You know that Mozilla is a non-profit, right?”  WHAT?! Seriously? A huge high-tech company whose brand is a household name is a non-profit organization? How is that possible? I had a million questions. I was blown away.

I unlearned a couple of things about non-profits and about my world view. Just when I was feeling a bit confident and higher than thou, I was humbled. This workshop w/ Mozilla… this is going to be great.

And then I found out it fell through. They found someone closer to them that was available and had already done some work with them previously. Bummer! But I learned a lot in the process, mostly about myself.

What is Ending and Rebirthing in your Career and Life?

I’m not religious and Good Friday and Easter don’t mean much to me beyond an excuse to eat brightly colored Peeps. However, I do connect with the notion of honoring death and rebirth, an ending and a beginning. Whenever something ends, something new begins whether or not you realize it at the time. As they say, when one door closes, another one opens (it’s just the long hallway in between that gets us!).

As I mourn the ending of a big relationship in my life, I anticipate the beginning of something else. Perhaps it will be a rebirth of something within me. Or something or someone I cannot yet fathom or contemplate. Whatever it is, we can have faith that this will be true, for that is life.

This week, whether you celebrate the holidays or whether you’re like me and will be focused on avoiding as many Peeps and Cadbury Eggs as possible, take a moment to think about how things could be different for you if you were to view each ending in your professional or personal life as a new start. If you say no to something, what might you be saying yes to next?

Springtime – time to refresh your job stuff

It’s Spring. Is it time to start anew? Well, it’s at least time to refresh your employment package.

Here are 3 tips to hit “refresh”:

1) Freshen up your resume

  • Does it reflect any new responsibilities, projects, achievements, or milestones? Ideally your resume is ready to go at any moment. After all, you never know!

2) Update your LinkedIn profile

  • Is your profile in sync with your resume? Do they tell the same story? Have you listed your volunteer positions and activities since LinkedIn created that section? Are you seeking testimonials from colleagues, and in return, are you writing some as well?

3) Record your salary history.

  • Are you keeping a reverse chronological record of your year-to-year salaries taking into account any raises and bonuses? Does anyone get bonuses anymore? If you did, make note of it!

Janus – the Roman God leads your leadership reflections

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Janus is the god of beginnings and transitions. He’s often depicted with two faces, each facing in opposite directions, simultaneously viewing the past and future. And thus, we have January. An ideal time to reflect back upon the past year … Continue reading


If you know coaching is effective, why don’t you work with one? (Click title for article)

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Executive coaching is the most effective professional development tool for non-profit executive directors. Don’t take my word for it! Executive directors say so. This past year, over 2,000 EDs were surveyed (click here for Daring to Lead report) and 82% of them … Continue reading


RETREATS without COACHING are not worthy of doing…

RETREATS without COACHING are not worthy of doing… Don’t you love that reinvigorated feeling that you get after a successful retreat?  The energy of your staff and board are high, the ideas are flowing, a brighter, better future for your organization … Continue reading