Read more about what it's like to work with Michelle as a speaker/workshop facilitator, a decision coach, and an executive coach.
About Michelle's Speaking and Workshops
Michelle has led a career navigation workshop for several years at the Haas School of Business Women in Leadership Conference, and the results have been extremely positive. Prior to starting the 2017 workshop, several women came up Michelle and expressed their gratitude for her workshop from previous years. They spoke about how her workshop provided them with clarity in career decision-making, and how they have been extremely satisfied with the decision they made while thanking Michelle for her influence.
Michelle’s adapts her workshops to the theme of the conference, and they are engaging and interactive. The participants are more than an audience and instead are actively engaged and involved. Individuals are encouraged to share their personal stories and career challenges, and she successfully creates an atmosphere in which all participants feel part of a team. One woman had an emotional plea for how to better help people from her home country, and after the workshop, she was surrounded a by a group who gave her hugs, support, and useful information to help her cause. I would personally recommend Michelle as a coach, workshop lead, and a panelist because she’s very passionate about her work and the results have been outstanding." - Ejede Okogbo
Michelle, thank you for leading our talent in a session on the science and application of making decisions with more clarity and confidence! Thank you for going above and beyond to ensure that content reflected the needs of our associates as well as planning thoughtful activities to help them practice decision making. Your participation in our professional development curriculum was instrumental in supporting the career development initiatives of our program participants. It was a pleasure working with you!" - Emani H., People Ops at Google
About Michelle's Decision Coaching
I was facing a difficult choice – accept a big promotion during a crisis-point for my organization, or take a step back to spend more time with my growing family. Throughout our session, Michelle encouraged me to think creatively about my options, pushing me beyond the obvious to think about alternative decisions I could make. She listened to and validated my feelings but helped me avoid being controlled by them. A key turning point was when she introduced the idea of sequential decision-making, which allowed us to find one potential, optimal solution. From there, she helped me identify my power in the situation and encouraged me to ask for what I actually needed to make the job work for me; she walked me through my priorities and choices in a clear and easy way that even my previous training in negotiation strategy had not prepared me to do for myself. I left our session better understanding my own needs and priorities, and prepared to work with my team toward a solution that would work for us all."
- Rachel A., seasoned Social Sector leader
Career decisions are highly complex and require a multitude of considerations, yet Michelle consistently amazes me with her unique ability to ask just the right questions and to transform chaos into clarity. Each piece of information that I provide to her is carefully considered, and I always feel supported and heard. I have learned so much from her about how to make better, more fulfilling decisions – both for my career and for many other areas in my life.
Every career dilemma is unique, and I have presented Michelle with multiple issues that I have been facing. Michelle has tackled each issue with a tailored, insightful game plan. I have been able to move from a place of fear and discomfort to a place that previously seemed unobtainable to me – confident and very excited about what lays ahead. For this, I am eternally grateful for her support, guidance, and hard work. Thank you so, so much, Michelle!" - Eileen E., Attorney
I started working with Michelle after I had taken a year to “level up" my artistic career and was looking for a new opportunity in the business world. Michelle’s approach is structured and supportive, and she’s incredibly talented in direction-setting and navigation. Her keen insight into objectives, values, and priorities prepared me to pursue only opportunities that truly were right for me. In the unpredictable path of finding a new job, I kept returning to my “compass”: the work that Michelle and I did together. - Jessica W., SVP of Marketing
Michelle is simply awesome! She was such an amazing help at a moment in my life I wanted to make a career move but was yet to scared to act on it. She helped me build confidence around my skills, she helped me sort through all my thoughts (mainly negative ones) to realize what my priorities were at this point in my life and what my next career goals were. She was also very flexible and reactive.
I definitely appreciated working with her and see her untangle decisions that appeared very complex to me. In short, Michelle helped me leave a job I was no longer happy in, find the confidence to follow a mini dream of mine and transition into a new career that I am so far very excited about!
In addition to her expertise, she has such a great personality. It was always a pleasure having a Skype video call with her and despite the time difference, we were always able to find time to schedule calls on a regular basis. Thank you Michelle for being so helpful and supportive at a time when I had a lot of doubts!" - Camille M., Paris, France
About Michelle's Executive Coaching
This is the best possible type of professional development I could have given myself. Had I gone with my initial instinct to be specific and tactical, I would have missed out on what would have been the bigger takeaways: recognizing my impact on the space around me, and learning to say no to create space for the things that matter. It's been really helpful, not just for me, not just for my team, but also for my family. I would have never expected that and didn't even know I needed it. It's been super useful. Thank you."
- Kathy Davies, Lecturer and Managing Director of the Life Design Lab at Stanford University
"This program is one of the best investments I've made. About 6 months ago, like many others, I found myself in a cloud. There had been so many late nights at the office that led to burn-outs, executive fire-drills with no upside, and technical debt always looming over me. I was at the pinnacle of my career, healthy finances, amazing friends, and I felt empty.
At the urging of a close friend, I emailed Michelle Florendo, and I know that when I look back 10 years from today, I will recognize this as the most critical turning point in my career, possibly my life. She isn't a therapist. She's not a life coach. Michelle's approach is engineered.
Her background in engineering must have played a substantial role in this process because it felt so measurable. Each session we held a retro on life. Breaking things down into actionable steps and holding me accountable for the things my friends and co-workers don't have time to tell me.
Michelle helped me find solid ground. It feels awesome. It's the bedrock that I will build my life and career upon."
- Lucas Smolic, CTO, Lemonlight
Michelle has a natural gift for asking smart, insightful questions that drill deeper and deeper until you reach the core issue that's holding you back. Many times, I didn't realize that a belief was at the root of my reluctance or discomfort about something until the issue was dismantled, and the behavioral change just followed naturally. Therein lies the value of Michelle's coaching.
Most people try to help by giving you generic advice after a few broad questions without truly understanding the way that you think, the frameworks in your mind, what your inner dialogue sounds like. So it's hard for their advice to solve anything. Michelle, on the other hand, is one of the few people who listens patiently without judgment and asks questions that drive the conversation in a productive way. But it's not just about listening -- if you wanted that, you could call your grandma or therapist. Michelle has the professional work experience, stellar pedigree, and is herself a type-A overachiever, so she's not just about the rah-rah-let's-feel-good moments -- she's about change and action.
She has given me specific exercises to work on that helped me become more authoritative in the workplace, to land a job that was challenging without sacrificing my work/life balance, and to successfully negotiate my salary with confidence. Michelle helps me arrive at solutions that are unique to my own situation so that I can immediately take action instead of stalling, because there's no reason to stall anymore."
- W. Kao, Co-Founder, stealth tech startup
"The biggest challenge I faced was trying to pursue other important interests (e.g., spending time with my family and my civic commitments) while remaining competitive in my career. Michelle helped me 1) clarify my values and 2) build structures in my schedule to ensure that I fulfill all my important priorities simultaneously.
Working with Michelle has helped me understand the push and pull of my four top priorities and the acceptance that came with appreciating the commitments that they entail. - Hazel D, Director, San Francisco, CA
My work with Michelle came at a pivotal transition point. Having left my role as a management consultant with Mckinsey & Company, I was fairly clear on the work I desired to pursue as an autonomous professional, but not sure whether I had the conviction to face the uncertainty before me. Michelle helped me acknowledge and accept the fear of the unknown, but not fall victim to it. When my life circumstances changed dramatically during the middle of our work, she was incredibly supportive and understanding. Through her questions, sharing of experiences and brainstorming, she allowed me to reach the conclusion that I should continue on my entrepreneurial path and helped me come up with practical strategies to keep on track. More than anything, I appreciated Michelle's ability to fully listen and absorb my comments. She genuinely cares about my success, both professionally and personally. Thank you for your support and motivation Michelle! - Reza S, Founder of Social Solutions Consulting, Brazil