Five Questions with Dr. Sheri-ann McLean- Founder and CEO

Executive Developmental Coach | Leadership Development Trainer |Keynote Speaker McLean Coaching and Consulting, LLC

What inspired you to start your own leadership development and Coaching organization, and how does your background in developmental coaching influence your approach to leadership?

It all began with a straightforward yet potent vision: to empower individuals within our community, one leader at a time. My journey into leadership commenced at the tender age of eight, right within the heart of my small Jamaican neighborhood. Armed with nothing more than youthful energy, a thirst for knowledge, and a touch of creative ingenuity (like transforming zinc fences into makeshift chalkboards and utilizing charcoal as writing implements), I gathered my friends to impart the knowledge I was acquiring. That early encounter ignited a spark within me—a fervent desire to make a positive impact that continues to propel me forward to this day. Throughout my upbringing, my parents ingrained in me values such as honesty, community spirit, and the importance of cherishing individuals. These principles have remained steadfast within me, serving as guiding lights in my endeavors. With over 12 years of experience in leadership development, coaching, and community building, my background is diverse. Armed with a Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology and certifications as a Maxwell Leadership Executive Trainer, Coach, and Speaker, I’ve merged my passion for psychology and leadership to better assist my clients. It’s all about leveraging my wealth of experience and expertise to facilitate the growth and flourishing of others.

Can you share some key principles or methodologies that guide your leadership development and Coaching services, particularly in fostering personal and professional growth?

Our leadership development and coaching services are anchored in the ACT framework—Assess, Cultivate, Transfer—providing a comprehensive approach to fostering personal and professional growth. Through the GROWTH Leadership Development Program, we begin by assessing individuals’ current skills and areas for development, utilizing various assessments and feedback mechanisms. Subsequently, individuals engage in cultivation activities such as workshops, mentorship, and coaching sessions to enhance their leadership competencies. As they progress, emphasis is placed on transferring their newfound knowledge and skills to their teams and organizations, promoting leadership development at all levels. We then tailor programs to suit the specific needs of each client, ensuring a customized and effective approach to leadership development.

As an executive developmental coach, how do you balance supporting your clients’ growth while also managing the strategic direction and operations of your own company?

Balancing the roles of a leadership development trainer/executive coach and company leader presents unique challenges. However, by intentionally focusing on time management and ensuring alignment with overarching goals, I’ve been able to navigate these challenges smoothly. For example, I utilize a time-blocking technique to dedicate specific time slots for training/coaching sessions and company operations. This allows me to give each role my full attention. Moreover, I ensure my training and coaching objectives are directly tied to the company’s broader goals. By aligning my training/coaching and leadership roles, I’ve been able to create a synergy that elevates effectiveness across the organization

Can you share a particularly rewarding or challenging coaching experience that has shaped your approach to leadership within your organization?

One coaching experience that deeply influenced my leadership approach involved supporting a client who grappled with self-doubt and negative self-talk upon returning to a fast-paced work environment. They harbored doubts about their ability to excel in their field. Throughout our coaching sessions, we implemented cognitive reframing techniques to challenge these self-limiting beliefs. For instance, we identified a recurring thought pattern of “I’ll never be as good as I used to be” and transformed it into a more empowering affirmation like “This is an opportunity to learn and develop new skills.” Witnessing the transformation was truly remarkable. The client reclaimed their confidence and actively pursued a leadership role within the company. Their newfound self-assurance ultimately propelled them to secure a significant promotion, emerging as a top performer within the organization. This experience solidified my conviction in the transformative power of coaching, highlighting the importance of self-awareness and empowerment in unlocking a leader’s full potential.

How do you prioritize self-development and continued learning as a CEO and executive developmental coach, and what advice would you give to aspiring women leaders in the coaching and consulting industry?

As a CEO and executive developmental coach, I understand the critical importance of prioritizing self-development and continuous learning. John Maxwell’s “law of the lid” resonates deeply with me, as it emphasizes that growth stagnates when learning comes to a halt. To uphold the highest standards of service for my clients, I make it a priority to invest in my own growth through various avenues such as certifications, conferences, webinars, and other learning opportunities.
For aspiring women leaders in the coaching and consulting industry, my advice is straightforward: remain open-minded and receptive to feedback. Cultivating a mindset of being coachable and teachable not only facilitates personal growth but also broadens your capacity to serve clients effectively. Embrace the philosophy of ongoing improvement, eagerly seeking out new knowledge and honing your skills to amplify your impact in your chosen field. By continuously evolving and expanding your expertise, you position yourself as a dynamic and invaluable resource for your clients, empowering them to achieve their goals and aspirations.