Laura has the distinction of being our very first specialist in the United States. It was such a thrill to get her reports back from her first courses there and to realise that there were no international barriers; they loved it as much as everyone else! Of course, it helps to pick good trainers, too, and Laura is a fabulous trainer with a wealth of life experience, as you can see.
Jane: Laura, what do you do (apart from RenewYou) and where do you do it?
Laura: I am a business and life coach for entrepreneurs who own service based businesses. For example, I have worked with home health care agencies, commercial kitchen exhaust cleaning service providers, and massage franchises. My focus is on helping business owners set specific goals for their business and put the right systems, processes and people in place to help them get there.
As any entrepreneur or employee knows, there is a great deal of connectivity between the satisfaction in your work life and that in your personal life. For that reason, I consider personal development coaching to be a significant aspect of my work, specifically in the area of work-life balance. I recently became a Certified Dream Manager® and now deliver a structured coaching program that helps employers build a culture of engagement, achievement and personal satisfaction within their organization.
When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time with my husband, our 3 children, our adorable grandson and our 2 rescue dogs. My husband and I are passionate about animal rescue and in the coming year we are going to explore partnering with a local veterinarian to develop a non-profit animal sanctuary.
How did you get involved in coaching & personal development issues?
My journey to providing business and personal development coaching did not follow the most direct route. But I got here and that’s what counts. At the time when I was choosing my college major, there was a great deal of emphasis on getting a “marketable degree.” So even though I wanted to be a social worker, I opted for a degree in accounting.
It turned out to be a great choice because it opened lots of doors. After graduating, I worked for 15+ years in corporate America and gained experience in finance, business development, marketing, communications, leadership, training, and human resources.
Though I enjoyed my work in corporate America (and gained experience that would prove invaluable to being a business owner) I had the heart of a social worker. I knew that in the long run I had to find a way to pair my business expertise with my passion for helping others.
In 2002, I was working for a boutique firm that provided human resources consulting services. Due to changing market conditions, my employer began reducing their staff in large numbers and I knew that it was a matter of time before I would be facing a layoff.
That layoff provided the nudge I needed to start my first business, a home health care agency. Over the next eight years I built a thriving business with 50+ employees. In 2010, I had the opportunity to sell my business and I took advantage of a lucrative exit strategy. Being a successful female entrepreneur had been an empowering experience. I was excited to start a new chapter in my though I wasn’t quite sure what that would be. One thing was certain: my work would continue to focus on helping others.
After selling my business, I realized that I had accomplished something that few business owners achieve. I had developed a systematic approach to starting and building a successful service business, while finding balance in my personal life, and that was something I wanted to share with others. From that desire, Ascend Business Coaching, LLC. was born.
Since success in work and life are intertwined, I knew that personal development coaching would be an integral part of my service. For that reason, I chose to become certified in two different personal development training programs. I also completed some master’s level coursework in a related field. I consider myself a lifelong learner (which, I suppose, is only fitting for a personal development coach) and I look forward to continually expanding the personal development programs I deliver to my clients.
Do you have a favourite quote or saying?
Many years ago I heard the saying “If you always do what you’ve always done, you will always get what you’ve always gotten.” That concept really stayed with me because I think it goes to the very core of why people often struggle to change their lives. If you consistently do the same thing and expect a different result it’s probably not going to happen.
That’s why I love helping people hone in on their vision of what they want in all aspects of their life and helping them put a plan in place to get there. If you want something new in your life, you have to try a different approach!
How did you get involved with RenewYou?
I am a firm believer in destiny and “RenewYou” was my destiny. In late 2013, I was planning to hire a marketing coach to help me jumpstart my business coaching practice. Before I signed on the dotted line, I asked if I could talk with a current client. Specifically, I wanted to talk with someone who was in similar business. That is how I met Jane (C. Woods), the creator of RenewYou. The rest, as they say, is history.
I felt an immediate connection with Jane and was keen to learn more about her RenewYou program. The more I learned, the more interested I became. The RenewYou program was so well conceived and implemented that I knew it would be a great way to help my clients conquer the obstacles that were getting in the way of the changes they wanted to make in their life.
I have conducted three courses to-date with another planned for early this year. The feedback has being consistently positive. I love leading the sessions and always come away feeling as energized and enthusiastic as my participants!
Laura, thank you so much for sharing your story. I hope the animal rescue goes well (says owner of two rescue cats and a mad cat lady). We’ll come back for an update!
Here is a link to Laura’s website so if you’re in her area of the US sign up for her next RenewYou! You’ll be in good hands.
Posted on January 12th, 2016 by Jane