Confessions of a Leadership Coach

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By: Elizabeth Rodriguez

My name is Liz, and I have a confession to make.

I’m a Leadership Coach, I’m 30 years old, I graduated from Rutgers – Newark with a degree in English and have the most awesome company where I’m mentored by two brilliant women. But here’s my confession: I gain my most valuable skills from volunteering with Braven.

It’s true—I leave each Wednesday night feeling readier than ever to conquer my biggest dreams. And trust me, I dream BIG. I dream of starting my own food business and consulting business. I dream of designing a vacation resort for families who have children on the autism spectrum. I dream of opening a flower shop and a bakery. And one day I’ll be a professor. This is just me—and I love it. On any given day, I talk about at least five different goals I want to accomplish in my lifetime. I wasn’t kidding when I said I dream big.

Elizabeth Rodriguez

There are plenty of people who have helped me get to where I am, but I think my Braven cohorts underestimate their impact on my life. They have changed my world for the better—they make me dream bigger, evaluate my goals, refine my big ideas, and motivate me to be the best version of myself, which I am so grateful for.

Being a Leadership Coach has, without a doubt, helped me in my professional persona. Quick background: I joined forces with the brilliant women who mentor me to help them build their dream. Together, we make organic snacks for kids and sell them to grocery stores, schools, and Amazon.

 

Little boy with quote that says "All I'm saying is, you can't eat cookies and be mad at the same time."

 

We work hard, we fail sometimes, and we learn. Most importantly, we celebrate our small victories and recognize where we can make improvements. I am blessed to be where I am today because I truly feel that my role as a Leadership Coach is possible because of them.

Throughout my time at Braven, I’ve learned:

  1. Speaking in front of people isn’t scary.
    Facilitating this class has made me more confident in front of large groups of people. When I’m explaining the do’s and don’ts of interviewing, I take those lessons into my company pitch. I am reminded of a firm handshake, eye contact, concise responses, and follow-up.
  2. When we go together, we go further.
    Semester after semester, my students remind me of how important it is to be a part of a team. Working for a small company makes this lesson incredibly valuable. Braven has taught me to collaborate more, listen empathetically, and give credit where credit is due.
  3. Authenticity is essential.
    I think it’s extremely rewarding to watch Fellows step out of their comfort zone while staying true to themselves. It’s endearing and a different kind of magical.

Being a Braven Leadership Coach is a very special honor. It can be time-consuming and challenging to navigate. It’s sometimes difficult to compartmentalize different views and stay true to your duties.

But I can promise you this: volunteering with Braven has the power to change the way you view the world. It’s such a bright place out there—with kind people, eager to learn, and ready to dream big right beside you.

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Interested in becoming a Leadership Coach? Learn more on our website.