It’s a big decision to make and it’s certainly not for everyone. That’s OK.
I can’t and don’t want to work with everyone nor just anyone. To work with a private mentor you have to be open and trust their instincts as well as your own. To dig in and stay open. I know my own level of success would never have come without the input of my own private mentors. I still have a mentor in areas where I want more success, clarity or more ease.
You see, it’s like having someone stand next to you who really sees you. Someone who’s walked the walk already – and is still walking the walk. You don’t have to do it all or figure it all out by yourself.
Take a look at just a few of the feedback soundbites received from VIP Private Mentoring clients. You’ll know if it’s time to consider being one yourself as you make the moves you want to make.
You might want to:
- Go for a new role
- Prepare for interviews
- Lead with more confidence and certainty
- Put yourself forward for promotion and/or pay rise
- Step up in your industry and be seen as valuable contributor
Or all of the above.
“I recently worked with Kay privately and she gave me one communication strategy, an exact set of words and the thinking behind them, which we recorded so I could remember the tone as well as the words. My team was able to use this right away with my coaching mastermind group and solve a tricky issue immediately.
It will literally save me 100’s of lost hours and 10’s of thousands of dollars and a lot of worry and concern. Kay’s really a master at getting to the heart of the issue and then crafting influential phrases for you to use immediately. What’s also important, Kay shows you how to make it genuine so it’s in your voice and yet smart and profitable. It just doesn’t get any better than that.”
Ann is a Director, Private Health Care Company, UK. When we started working together she felt alienated from her team and unappreciated by her senior management.
"Before working with Kay I thought communication mentoring was counselling and that I certainly did not need it. Working with Kay couldn’t be more different – inter-active, thought-provoking, confronting and good fun at the same time. I was feeling an outsider with my team as I had such a short fuse and my frustration kept bubbling up. I’m so much more open-minded and willing to learning new ways of approaching problems. It’s as if Kay’s a secret member of my team in fact and helps me plan my moves with care.
I’ve learned how my behaviour can make things happen and I modify my approach and my language. People notice the difference in me. Kay’s style is fun and challenges you and with Kay's thoughtful questioning and strategy, I’ve been promoted twice since we’ve been working together.”
Charlotte Goldsmith-King, a private business owner who wanted to raise her rates without losing her clients.
“I’d undervalued myself by keeping my rates the same for over 4 years and I was scared to increase them in case I lost clients. Working with Kay, she quickly showed me how and why I needed to increase my rates. She showed me how to position the increase to my clients in a personalised email and I took a deep breath and raised my rates by 50%. We put together a package for clients which a number immediately took. As well as having my best-ever income month, all my clients stayed with me!
I realise now how much my clients value me and what I do for them. I’m much more confident about what I’m worth and what I bring and should have done it years ago!”
“Kay and I put together the story for my stories!”
Dennis is a senior partner in a US law firm and we worked together over the telephone to make sure the key presentation he was doing to his London audience was “on message”.
The point of the presentation was to bring out how important it is to tell stories to engage people, particularly juries.
"It's been incredibly helpful to have Kay really pull from me what I want to accomplish by this important talk, and she really helped me to position it for my audience so they'll get it.
Using words, and angles which will appeal and add to my story, Kay made me much clearer on how I'll structure both the presentation and the essay that goes with it - and we threw in some good British humour too".
David is a newly-appointed Director in a large public healthcare organisation and was applying for a promotion and struggling with translating his experience and skills to fit with the new, senior role.
“What I realized as Kay questioned me and started to – in her words “position me powerfully” was that I’m worth an awful lot! It’s so easy to underestimate what you’re doing as ‘just what I’m doing’ and Kay made me crystal clear about how to position my experience and talk about my value and really own it. At times I had to ask myself “wow, is that really me?” because it sounds so much more powerful and a bit scary but I got the job and I’m loving it. I’d thought it was obvious that what I do is valuable, Kay helped me own it and that’s the real difference for me and why, I think, I got the job.”
“I worked with Kay recently after a frustrating day in a small meeting where I couldn't seem to get a word in edgewise. It was the final straw. I knew I had great ideas to contribute, and felt bottled up and ignored, disconnected and like my thoughts weren't valuable. By the end of the day, I was cranky!
Kay helped me understand how to jump in to a conversation and how to frame my thoughts so they would be noticed and valued. She showed me how to add little hooks to my ideas that would help them stand out above the buzz and ‘noise’ in a room, all without being pushy.
I got to try out what I learned at a big networking event this weekend, and Kay's mentoring made all of the difference. I usually feel a little lost in a big room and this time was different. I felt listened to, powerful, plugged in and like I got to make better connections with the people I was talking to. It was fantastic.”
Fiona had recently been promoted to a Senior Manager within a major UK corporate. Being appointed to help her become less reactive to the new situations and issues she was dealing with and to feel comfortable delegating more; a major part of our focus was the language she was using in her requests, in meetings and in emails.
“Initially I was daunted by the prospect of the role but am now more comfortable and feel I’m capable of managing most things.
Working with Kay has made me so much more aware of the words I say and the way they come across. Kay’s very astute at recognizing the use of language and good at giving you your words back and making you think about what you really mean by what you’re saying – and the effects it can have on others. Also, I’m much less reactive now and leave people to consider things rather than responding immediately and doing things for them.”
Gabrielle and I worked together on creating more ease in Gabrielle's relationship with her business partner:
"When I first started working with Kay I was frustrated to the point of getting really annoyed and angry with my partner. It was becoming a real issue and was avoiding spending time around him. I'd kept this pretty much to myself as it was a such a personal thing for me.
As soon as Kay and I started our work together, she understood where I was coming from and from pretty much the first sentence, she began to help me. Kay 'walked' me through step by step how I should address the situation, the approach I should take, the words I should use - and avoid - and I seriously couldn't believe I'd been such a dork for so long! It's made an enormous difference to our relationship and I know we are getting more done together, I'm more relaxed and as a result, so is my business partner. If you feel you can't see the wood for the trees in your working relationships, see if you can work with Kay!
H is a senior team leader in a major public organisation and, as one of my private VIP clients, we’ve been working together, one-to-one, on raising her profile and visibility as she goes for a promotion either in her current organisation or outside it.
H was preparing to make a presentation to a group of public figures about a recent successful, high-profile project she ran. All of the people in her audience have the potential to support her as she makes her next move so we worked together 3 days before the meeting on positioning and clearly defining how and what her successes were and how to get them across in the most compelling, professional way.
“I had prepared a presentation which I planned to simply run through; I wasn’t going to totally “wing it” but had given little thought to the “bigger picture” of this meeting. Working with Kay, we took the meeting apart piece by piece and worked out what I wanted to achieve and how. Kay gave me some great tips, advice and guidance and made me look at the wider opportunity this meeting gave me. On the day, I felt fully prepared and ready for any tricky questions. Instead of getting defensive – my normal operating procedure, I came across as knowledgeable and open and was happy to share learning and experiences.
Whilst our preparation was about the meeting, Kay and I were actually addressing the bigger picture and wider/future implications and opportunities it could generate for me. Great stuff.”
J is a team-leader in a UK-based corporate and we started working together as her Director was concerned at how J was expressing herself in both meetings and in emails and the negative effects it was having on her team. She was described as muddled and unsure.
“Kay’s style is really informative and participative and within the first half an hour together she started to highlight to me some of the ways I was expressing myself which was really holding me back. Instead of making me feel in the wrong or uncomfortable, she immediately put me at my ease.
Together we worked on ways I could handle situations and difficult people differently and she really highlighted the power of my language and how it can be used for effect. I’m now much more aware of how I speak and what I write and how to structure what I say so it has more effect. I’m much more confident now and I think and plan what I’m going to say. My team has noticed the difference in me and how I’m more convincing and confident."
Lisa is a senior manager in a public organisation. With a lot of change in direction on the horizon, L is about to announce a restructure of the team and the ways of working. We worked together to best position this for the team. L was concerned how the team will respond to the changes and what the changes will mean for them.
“Working with Kay, the language is the key thing for me. Understanding how to get my language right by using clear words, helpful words and still making sure that the message is well-received and understood. It’s amazing the difference it makes discussing it with Kay and then hearing how to make my message clearer, less emotional and more respectful of the people listening to me. The principles Kay shows you work just as well at home with my husband and 2 small boys as they do in the office. A bonus!
“I thought I had to know all the answers”
N and I started working together when she was first appointed to the senior management team of a large public organisation. Her boss wanted her to become more assertive and more comfortable about her decisions to enable her to delegate more. Projects were being held up and deadlines missed as she felt she had to keep referring things upwards.
“The key for me has been Kay showing me how to and when to ask better questions and to know it’s OK to “not know” or be confused at times. I just ask another question. I thought I had to know all the answers once I was promoted. I don’t worry so much now and this makes me feel more at ease. It’s much more comfortable now being out of my comfort zone! I’m enjoying the managerial side to my job now as I’m starting to get results where I was struggling.”
Paul secured a long-awaited promotion within a major UK software company.
“Kay’s a really valuable and positive force! She gave me useful self-awareness and guidance at a stressful time. We worked on things like my responses and reactions to events, others’ influences on what I want and how I would take on and embrace the new responsibilities with gusto rather than fear.
Giving you both strategic and tactical help as well as 'the mindset' piece, Kay's gentle but firm and she's great to have on your side. I was uncertain and anxious when we started our work together and now I’m settled and sorted!”
Simon is a partner in a London-based private equity company. He and I worked together for about 3 months on raising his profile and visibility within his company towards being promoted. We concentrated on how he positioned what he was doing and the results he was getting. S got the promotion and, when he did, was unhappy with the salary increase he was offered.
“I was so frustrated. I’d worked hard to get the promotion but knowing the job was going to be so much more demanding, I felt a bit cheated that they thought I’d do this job for a minimal salary increase. I told Kay about my frustration and she asked me to tell her exactly what I wanted. Then, together we worked through writing a letter to the CEO to position what I wanted without me sounding like I was complaining or whining.
The first thing the CEO said when we sat down to discuss it was “great letter Simon”. I got the increase I wanted and without Kay’s input I wouldn’t have. She’s good to have on your side!"
Samantha is a new manager of a large team for a major UK public service.
S is part of my mentorship “Be Visible; Be Heard; Be Understood and Rewarded at Work” and she sent me this feedback on recent developments showing what happens when you stand up and put yourself forward.
‘Over the last couple of weeks I’ve put myself and my team forward and proposed a number of solutions to my boss with amazing results, one of which is securing sponsorship for continuing with my evening studies which is a massive result.
What you showed me about how to email so that people take notice has made a real difference already and using some of your tips about how to keep people engaged in meetings has a real impact. Colleagues sit up and really listen and respond and I’m finding it much easier to get things done and keep things moving along. Thank you."
Sam joined one of my private small groups to work on her confidence in managing her team and in preparing herself for in-house interviews. We also worked together one-to-one as a VIP client.
“Before I worked with Kay I just assumed everyone would appreciate what I was doing and kept a fairly low-profile day-to-day. I’d been passed over for a promotion and was pretty down when I met Kay. She helped me get really clear about how to own and sell my abilities and talk about them easily - it paid off in a recent interview. I was much more prepared this time and I hit all the key points I wanted to in my interview and got the job!
My boss even said the Board was very impressed with me saying I came across as a ‘friendly, relaxed, good all-rounder’” Go Sam!
"Before working with Kay I didn't really have a problem with approaching people at work but I was in forthright scary "bull in a china shop" mode full time which wasn't very helpful for anyone. Least of all me.
Kay’s helped me be more considered in my approach. Calm and clever. I've changed my language and how I present my ideas, especially the tricky stuff.
I understand more about what makes people tick and how to appreciate the other person has "stuff" going on which influences their relationship/interaction with you. I'm less defensive and negative. I've developed a more rounded and mature ‘what’s possible’ approach/style at work which has been noticed and rewarded by senior managers and staff. It's much easier to get buy-in and say what needs to be said now. And that’s useful everywhere in my life, not just at work!"
Some clients chose to keep their names/company confidential which I know you’ll respect, as do I. I truly appreciate them sharing their story and experience to show you what’s possible.