“Our leadership team had fallen into some unproductive patterns that were not making the best use of the time we had together – our decision making process was not clearly articulated, we weren’t spending our time on the most important issues. With Karen, we accomplished a lot in a relatively short amount of time. We changed our meeting structure and set aside time to focus on strategic issues. We made agreements regarding decision making.
“Now with the new structure and some rules of engagement, people are working well together. They’re managing a lot of work, sticking to processes, and getting things done. We’re using our time together in a much more productive way. Things feel really good around here.
“As a consultant, I found Karen very easy to work with. She’s very intuitive about the dynamics of the group, and keeps things moving forward in a positive and productive way. She was a good fit for the organization, and everyone enjoyed working with her.”
—Lori Kaplan, President and CEO
Latin American Youth Center
“Karen’s clear methodology for leadership development using somatic principles helped me stay focused on goals during a period of rapid and constant organizational change. At the same time, her intuitive and adaptive coaching style provided me with the flexibility I needed to learn and grow.”
—Ann, VP of Operations, Large Non-Profit
“You’re so helpful in framing what needs to be seen, but letting me make the choice about what needs to be done.”
—School District Superintendent
“I hired Karen to help me learn how to transition from being a tactical leader to a strategic one. Through thoughtful listening and expert knowledge of best practices in leadership, Karen helped me access my strategic leadership skills and allowed me to understand how to set myself up for success each day. I had many “aha” moments with Karen that turned into opportunities for action and progress. Karen has an easy, calm and natural leadership about her that gains trust instantly. I can’t recommend her highly enough!”
—Emma Kieran, VP of Fundraising and Development, Orr Associates, Inc.
“After 20+ years of successful leadership in the private sector I found myself leading a public organization through significant change. The strategies and tactics I had used in previous roles simply weren’t working. The group I was leading felt I wasn’t listening to them, that I was not communicating effectively, and that I was not keeping my commitments. Trust had been eroded and I was becoming less and less connected to the staff, affecting my performance and the results I was trying to achieve for the organization.
“Karen assessed the situation expertly. She diagnosed areas in which different approaches were needed. She defined objectives for our engagement and then developed a systematic coaching plan that built upon my existing leadership skills and began to expose me to new perspectives on leadership and new tools for successfully guiding the organization.
“Karen’s unique approach included instruction in the practice of somatics, a physical methodology that has applications not just professionally but in every aspect of human relationships. Her insights into communication; listening, taking a stand, staying connected and managing my own reactivity were precisely the tools I needed to restore my confidence, re-establish my leadership and resume forward progress.
“I am fortunate to have experienced Karen’s powerful techniques for leaders. Her ability to provide tools and techniques for improving a leader’s skills is remarkable. The applications in professional and personal interactions are game changers for any leader who wants to develop their own capacity to lead, advance organizational objectives, or lead through dramatic change.”
—John Haslam, Associate Vice President and General Manager
“Karen is a skillful, compassionate, and perceptive coach. Together we identified specific goals for the six months we worked together and used them as the foundation of our work. Karen engenders trust and has a way of calling out what she sees in a direct, compassionate, and non-judgemental way. My experience with Karen supported my growth as a leader and a coach and has had a lasting impact on how I show up both in my work and in my life.”
—Julie Rubinstein, Coach and Human Resources Executive
“Our senior leadership team was comprised of very strong personalities, different backgrounds and divergent opinions. We burned through ideas and consultants readily and were stuck in our own dysfunction. While we performed well individually, we could not harness the power of our collective strengths.
“Karen and a colleague worked with our team and helped us to improve our communication allowing us to reach unprecedented levels of trust and honesty. The strong foundation allowed us to move quickly to business developing a new strategic direction and a new model for service delivery.
“Our time together was well-spent, I only wish we’d done the work sooner.”
—Evelyn Correa, Workforce Development Executive
“When I started working with Karen, I was Associate Director of Human Resources, and I needed to develop my confidence and capacity to act with authority, command respect from senior leadership, facilitate effectively, and respond more appropriately. Karen was fabulous. I found her warm and friendly – she’s soft spoken and gentle, and yet effective.
“All my coaching goals were met. I feel more confident, I show up as a leader more, I listen more, I facilitate more effectively, and I speak more deliberately. And shortly after finishing my work with Karen I was promoted to Director of Human Resources, which was the ultimate goal.
“My experience working with Karen was very positive, enriching, and rewarding. I enjoyed the ability to have open and honest conversations without feeling awkward, and her ability to turn my negative concerns into positive lessons. I miss our time together.”
—Tamara Barrat, Director of Human Resources
“Karen has exceptional awareness of all the complexities happening when a leader is interacting with their staff. She sees instantly what is going on and is able to address problems that would have most likely remained transparent without her observations. This ability enables her to provide instant advice to leaders. This advice is invaluable and being able to receive it in the moment somehow makes it stronger and much easier to own. I think Karen does superlative work and I highly recommend her.”
—Don Albright, Director, UI Claims Center
Employment Security Department
“My main goal in working with Karen was to be able to enter the realm of leadership intentionally, mindfully, confidently, in a open manner. She helped me do that in a way that far exceeded my expectations. In particular, Karen’s identification of the mind-body connection as an important issue was very important. I had almost no awareness of it in myself and little understanding of its importance when we started working together. Karen supported my investigation into this area, which opened up a whole new world for me. I believe that somatic experience is a key to my personal growth, and the growth and success of teams that I work with. Karen started me on the path of developing leadership skills centered in a healthy mind-body connection. I am able to communicate my feelings and thoughts with others better, and at the same time I can be true to myself more often, an essential skill for an executive. I am more able to follow my heart. I am more open to the world, more open to the nourishment that the world provides, more able to grow, and more able to help others experience these things for themselves. That’s leadership.”
—Adam Feuer, Director of Software Development
“I was starting to see changes with the team after your first session with us, and the second session was icing on the cake. Some of us were very skeptical, including me, because we’ve been through a lot of different “flavors of the month,” and now I’m actually watching us use these skills! It’s exciting, because it’s making a difference in how we’re interacting with each other and our level of trust with each other. Our last operational review was very rich and productive. Everybody was participating. We’ve gotten very good at addressing issues as they arise and calling each other on old patterns that aren’t so helpful, without being offensive. We’re doing better with communication, and making higher quality decisions more efficiently.
“I’ve been trying to articulate, since I first met you, how valuable you are. I’ve been involved with many consultants in my career, and the foremost thing that struck me about you immediately was your humanity and presence – when you’re working with somebody you’re really with that person in the moment. I felt an immediate, instant sense of trust. You’re so dead on with your observations, and very skilled at what you do.”
—Lynette Destefano, Administrator, Seattle UI Claims Center
Employment Security Department
“It was amazing to see the ownership and accountability Karen accepted while meeting with our leadership group. She quickly became part of the team and her feedback to us was timely, clear, and beneficial. She was able to coach “real time” without derailing the conversation. She was a tremendous help to our team and would be to any team that needs coaching with team member interactions, effective meetings, and honest communications. Her presentation style is very welcoming.”
—Steve Ruggles, Administrator, Spokane UI Claims Center
Employment Security Department
“Working with you slowed me down, calmed me down, made me think. You helped me think about what my job really was. As the Board chair, I couldn’t control everything. It was a matter of influence and leading and persuading and educating, and not doing it all. It was a totally different level of activity. And in order to be successful I had to change my thinking and behaviors and speaking with the group, and change my expectations of them.
“Our interactions became much more open and honest and supportive. We learned as individuals and as a group to make decisions and move forward in a way that helped the group mature. There were higher bars for performance, both individually and as a group. The Board was also able to work with key management staff in a more constructive way that led to higher performance.
“Throughout the process of your interactions with the Board, as well as with me, this was a learning experience. This was not just going to another meeting. I saw the board move up to a higher level of performance, and others did too. I think we’re a better Board, and you helped that.
“I knew I had some faults as a leader, but I went years without knowing what to do about it. You were able to neutrally frame negative behaviors that had negative outcomes. And then you’d give me ways to practice how to get better outcomes. I think you helped me change in a way that was constructive, and I appreciate it.”
—Dr. Mike Wanderer, Former Board Chair
Group Health Permanente
“As a result of the work you did, [our board] is a high-functioning group that truly leading this enterprise. We don’t just talk. We’ve been able to move the organization where we want it to go. There are a lot of practices we’ve incorporated into how we do business that came from the coaching you provided – it’s all standard operating procedure now.
“You understand people really well. And of course, when you’re running an organization, it’s all about people. It’s getting people to work together. That’s the skill that you bring – you are great at coaching people on how to work effectively with others.”
—Dr. Paul Flugstad, Board Chair
Group Health Permanente
“I found your coaching extremely valuable. You were invested in me, you gave the process your focus and attention, and I developed better communication skills as a result of our work. I listen better, clarify meaning, and get to the goals of a conversation more quickly and accurately. I’m able to communicate my ideas and expectations more clearly, and I’m more comfortable going into difficult conversations. All of this allows me to provide better customer service to the people we serve. All I learned I’ll be able to use and grow with for the rest of my working career, and the rest of my life. It’s applicable to everything I do.”
—Joe Weber, Director, Contract Administration and Arbitration
“Karen is an insightful and effective somatic coach. She assists her clients in applying the principles of Conscious Embodiment to life challenges so that her clients show up powerful, resilient and whole to the intentions they set for themselves. I highly recommend Karen!”
—Catherine Bachy, Leadership Coach
“I have received innumerable benefits from this relationship, and I cannot begin to tell you how much your coaching has meant to me. In terms of the purposes and outcomes of coaching I identified early on: I am definitely creating the space in my relationships with others that fosters effective communication, that demonstrates compassion, directness, and patience. People are seeking me out for my people-leadership qualities more and more, yet I seem to have maintained my reputation as an idea person. I cannot stress the importance of our time together and how your coaching has empowered my achieving the goals of our sessions. It has been your ability to stay objective, to offer suggestions backed with fact and/or helpful models, and most importantly your ability to laugh at my foibles in a manner so compassionate and lighthearted that has brought about the success of our sessions. You are, indeed, a skilled listener and one who can bring out the best in those you encounter.”
—Chief Financial Officer
Urban School District
“More than anything, coaching has made me be more honest with myself…To be honest with myself, I’ve had to slow down, be present, deal with emotions, and learn from emotions by analyzing them with a big, fat honesty filter. Karen took her time to make sure we created the perfect assignment. It was the right assignment and anything else would have proven to be disappointing. Then she truly assessed my personality to decide what exercises to try. Everything was perfectly designed for me. Some things were easy and some things extremely difficult, and that felt right. Karen was also extremely flexible with my assignments and time, which was imperative. She nudged me, but didn’t push. Karen facilitated meaningful and long-term change in me. I had all the pieces, but Karen uncovered them and helped me put them back together into something that represents the true me.”
Nonprofit Social Services Agency
“Getting clarity is a very powerful thing. As a result of coaching, I have much greater awareness about what contributes to and detracts from my ability to maintain balance in my life. And, I have been able to make changes in how I work and care for myself that have made a difference. I have more focused conversations with people at work, and make more specific requests and set deadlines. I’m better now at setting boundaries, and giving up trying to control things that aren’t controllable. My average day is shorter now, and a little thing like getting home half an hour earlier really makes a difference to my evening. My husband has noticed a big difference in the amount of energy I have for my personal and family life.”