FlexCareers is passionate about supporting our employer partners and our community to be the best that they can be. We offer a range of training and coaching services in areas such as career transition and outplacement, parental leave, return to work, managing flexibly, interview skills, leadership and management, positive psychology, and diversity & inclusion – to name a few.
1. Shannon, tell us about your career history?
I have 20 years of experience coaching leaders and developing talent for and within iconic organisations in Australia. Previous to that, I worked in Human Resources for organisations in the United States and Bermuda. I have coached leaders in India, Dubai, New Zealand and China during the course of my corporate career.
My career has always been about change and even when I tried to shift by completing my MBA, I still was drawn back to change and helping organisations and people reach their potential. My biggest learning in my corporate career was that if you want any organisational or policy change to happen, you must change the mindset and behaviours of the people to make it last. Thus my career has a strong focus on leadership development.
I have been able to make a difference through my roles as Culture and Leadership Consultant, Learning and Development Manager and Organisational Development Manager. In these roles, I not only was also able to coach incredible people and see them grow, I also learned the “behind the scenes” tactics that are used in succession management to ensure that people reach their potential, plus I implemented the policies and systems necessary to keep people engaged with their mission.
2.What was your motivation to become a coach?
My motivation to specialise in coaching working mothers came from my own experience of burnout. I was rushing so much that I lost my life-balance and it was costing me my marriage, my kids, my health and my finances (I accumulated $2000 in speeding fines due to my rushing in one year!) I broke down and realised I wanted something different for myself and my family. In that journey, I discovered that there were more mothers who were on the same path and so I honed my skills to focus on working mothers.
3.Do you have any particular areas of coaching expertise?
My coaching expertise is with working mothers and specifically their mindset. I do not teach parenting (I am growing that skill every day with my 3 children) however when a mother has a more balanced mindset, her children will pick up on that and tend to calm down themselves as they then feel more secure so parenting is easier and more enjoyable.
The areas I focus on with my coaching are work-life balance, mothers in leadership, returning to work, career planning and stress management.
4.What do you love most about coaching?
It brings me joy when mothers tell me how they have implemented changes and it made such a positive difference. I love seeing their frown lines transform into smiles.
5.How do you define success?
I define success as a state of being balanced and how this looks changes depending on the person and stage of life. It is a state of being where you are “in the flow” yet not sacrificing anything in the process.
When you can smash your results by day and cuddle your family by night with a smile on your face like the Wonder Woman you are.
6.What is your vision for women in the workplace?
My vision in the workplace is that every opportunity is given and taken by women to make the most of their talents without sacrificing anything. The ripple effect of improving the lives of working mothers is huge as their state of wellbeing directly affects the well-being of their children – the future generations of the workforce.
Shannon coaches working mothers to bring more of their authentic self and align with their purpose to uplevel their performance so they can smash their results and then switch off at home to be present for their loved ones – happy in the knowledge that they are fulfilling their potential at work and at home.
What this means for organisations is that they don’t lose those driven, intelligent and ambitious women previously identified as “talent” to the mommy track or other businesses including self-employed after investing so much time, effort and money into their succession planning. Women do want to work and have a career with purpose yet more than 70% go back to work only for the paycheck (according to EY research) so organisations must reconnect and re-engage these women to thrive in their organisations to gain a positive ROI.
What this means for the individual is that they re-engage with their passion that drives them at home and at work. They learn to balance the two and intertwine them with a particular set of skills to be successful in both arenas. They rediscover themselves, their goals and their passion to have it all with a clear conscience.
With working mothers achieving more and being more balanced, we can improve the lives of children – future generations, everywhere. Discover more about Shannon’s business here.