Meet the Ambivert ‘Motivational Listener’
Serving leaders and business owners by helping them unleash their highest potential in the marketplace. Since launching her business over 10 years ago, Noreen have experienced many of the triumphs and challenges business leaders go through. With this understanding, lessons learnt on the journey, professional accreditation, continuous professional development and research-based systems and strategies she designed for her clients, she listens to visionary leaders and entrepreneurs and helps them translate their visions in workable strategies that drive growth, higher performance, more productivity and a healthier bottomline.
A Passport, $100 and a Dream
I was born and raised in post-colonial Kenya. The nature of my father’s work with the new independent administration meant constant migration to different towns and cities birthing the ‘nomadic’ spirit and the desire to explore new territories. Watching him deliver regular public addresses or facilitate land dispute mediations and negotiations gave me a small glimpse into the results of effective communication. I wanted to be like him. My entrepreneurial drive and never-give-up spirit came from watching my mother run multiple businesses as well as a home. At the age of 17, through my mother’s investment, I boarded a plane from Nairobi to London to attend college – the beginning of my journey to self-discovery and self-actualisation.
You Become What You See & Do Regularly
Learning the rules-of-engagement and integration in a new country was nothing short of adventurous.
Finding my first job and negotiating my wages was fulfilling and made me realise I could communicate my way to success. The business owner had initially refused to hire me but I challenged him to let me show him results and he would pay me a wage equal to his best male worker. I was the only female they had ever hired.
Living the paycheque-to-paycheque student life was dwarfed by the vigour of youth, the will to learn and the desire to succeed.
Combining studying full-time, working part-time and late-night reading was the norm for most foreign students. Time and money management became our forte.
Every small “win” was worth celebrating. Dreams were big and nothing could stop us.
I discovered personal development seminars through the church I attended at the time. I got fully involved because this new discovery spoke a language my soul understood – achieving dreams through goals.
At one of the seminars, inspired by my then mentor, I gave my first public speech to a room full of professionals three times my age. I was 17.
First Defining Moment
I believe everyone is innately wired to respond to things that matter to them the most – that’s their heart-code. At different points in our lives we all experience defining moments that shift our paradigms, put life into very clear perspective and trigger our heart-code.
I had just handed in my final college assignment and was walking through the revolving door to go home and pack to travel to Kenya because my father who had been ill, when I received a text message letting me know he had transitioned to another realm. We had spoken. I had said everything I needed to say. I was both broken and at peace.
Life and time took on new meaning. I began to think ask myself what I really wanted to do, not with my life but with my time – life time. 3 months later, university started, I had enrolled to read BSc Information Systems and Management. My father had inspired me. Grief, soul-searching and the need to offer financial support to my family led me to defer my course a year in. I took on full-time employment and went in search of my dream career.
Second Defining Moment
I stumbled upon coaching by serendipity whilst online. It read like the personal I had been my whole life. A few years later, I enrolled whilst working full-time and never looked back.
Balancing a full-time job in a high-pressure environment, studying and setting up a consultancy too a lot out of me. But it was worth it.
Getting my IIC&M Executive Coach accreditation felt like a big win. I was financially secure, ready to invest in commercial property and launching a consultancy. I was content, but life had other plans.
I lost it all. I guaranteed loan that was never repaid, the borrower skipped the country and the creditors came after me. I was 30 and rebuilding my life from negative figures. The lessons learnt would later become the foundation for my Money Mindset Mastery workshops and Financial Intelligence for Entrepreneurs conferences.
Third Defining Moment
I lost everything. But the support of close friends got me through the worst years. However, the stress was not so forgiving. At a routine health-check, my doctor referred me to the hospital for an emergency scan where a tumour was discovered.
This time, I learnt to stress-relief strategies, mindfulness and the power of releasing the past to embrace the future. I was not ready to die so I found ways to live. Alternative therapy, healthier living, better work balance, prayer and a peaceful existence became my modus operandi. The tumour stopped growing. However, a few years later, I developed inexplicable internal bleeding. I had found the way to heal my body the first time so I did it again, but this time with more intention and ruthless elimination of anything non-essential in life and business. In addition to all the business and leadership strategies I had learnt over the years, I now had an arsenal of lessons to share with entrepreneurs and leaders.
Fourth Defining Moment
The financial upheaval had delayed my corporate exit strategy so I still worked my corporate job as I rebuilt my life and my business.
My soul kept giving me ‘nudges’ to start planning my next level of business growth – emerging markets in Africa. But the fear of being homeless and broke kept me working. I had lost enough to know I never wanted to experience financial difficulty again.
Finally it felt like the right time to take a radical leap. I mulled over the decision and put plans in place to up-level.
Losing my sister suddenly gave me all the perspective I needed to embrace my life work completely and contentedly. I wrote a personal blog about weathering that storm. You can read it HERE. This picture is of my grandmother during the eulogy.
I took a sabbatical that helped me recalibrate and eventually take all my endeavours in a new direction.
Create What You Need with What You Have
In all my years as an executive coach, consultant and strategist, I have learnt that we do not always get what we want but we can take what we are given to create what we need.
I have learnt that behind every high-level position in an organisation is a person and humanising leadership is crucial to the success and longevity of any business.
I am as interested in the ‘soul’ and culture of the business as I am in the leader of the business.
Out of the ashes life gave me I have written, delivered keynotes, created a podcast, rebuilt The Radical Leap Company with no money in the bank, created GRASP™ and CRYSTALLIZE™ business systems and forged strategic partnerships focused on making a difference in the world. It’s all in the perspective and the strategy for growth.
I’m on a mission to help leaders and entrepreneurs all over the world unleash their highest potential, be more, earn more and make a difference in the world with their expertise. Whether you are an individual, a brand or a company looking for higher performance, more productivity or a healthier bottomline, together we can design & implement the next level of growth through private consulting, group strategy sessions, workshops or keynotes. Get in touch today.