To read 400-word biographies of our associates based throughout Asia-Pacific, click on a country name below:
PEOPLES REPUBLIC OF CHINA
*NICOLAS LECOURT sees in each of his coachees a human journey unfolding and a hero in the making – a hero with missions to fulfill, talents to deploy, and contributions to extend. As a coach and a facilitator, Nicolas’s purpose is to help create the conditions for this hero to be manifested in the world.
A native of France, Nicolas holds a bachelor in management from the Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Paris, and an MBA from Melbourne Business School. He is certified as a coach by New Ventures West and the Institute of Executive Coaching (IECL). He works professionally in both French and in English.
After a first couple of years in Western Africa with Bank National de Paris, Nicolas returned to France as an export manager for the cosmetics packaging arm of DANONE, covering European markets. A brief – and largely failed – stint as an entrepreneur preceded his return to the corporate sector in a sales and marketing position with the Sidel Group, based first in Hong Kong, then in Singapore. During this six-year residence in Asia, he travelled extensively through China and the ASEAN region, implementing complex turnkey projects in the beverage packaging industry while managing multicultural teams of engineers, distributors, and contractors. During this period he also established and managed a notably successful sales and service branch in India. He then moved to Melbourne, Australia (a proud citizen of which country he subsequently became), further developing business for the same group of companies. Then he returned to China where, as the general manager of CLESTRA, he set up a local subsidiary, hired the local team, and held P&L responsibility.
For the past six years, Nicolas has been an independent consultant based in Shanghai. As an executive coach and a facilitator, he has provided services to Astra Zeneca, AIG, Alcatel Lucent, Bayer, Covestro, Herbalife, HSBC, The Intercontinental Hotel Group, Johnson Controls, L’Oreal, SC Johnson, and Unilever, amongst other organizations. In addition to his corporate work, he also retains a number of private clients.
Nicolas also serves as an appointed facilitator with the Association pour le Progrès du Management, which each month gathers together in Shanghai 50 of the most prominent French-speaking business leaders from around the region.
Core to his work and his own on-going development are Nicolas’s daily practices of meditation and yoga. Shanghai has been home for him and his Malaysian spouse for more than 10 years.
GABOR HOLCH, curious and driven, is proud to have found his passion in global management consulting.
A Budapest native, Gabor spent some of his childhood in Baghdad, then returned to Budapest for his teenage years. There he acquired a bachelor’s in English studies and philosophy at ELTE University, then a master’s in international relations from Central European University on a full George Soros Scholarship. A year later he completed an M.Phil. in advanced international studies at the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna. He is certified in a variety of assessment tools including the Predictive Index, MBTI, DISC and StrengthsFinder. A native speaker of Hungarian, Gabor is fluent in English and Mandarin, speaks decent German, Italian, and Spanish, and can converse in Russian.
Gabor interned at the United Nations headquarters in Vienna. He then worked at, and later became chief of, a Bosnia-Herzegovina field office of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
Not long after relocating to Shanghai in 2002 Gabor founded his consultancy, which has been providing services for over a hundred multinationals including Akzo-Nobel, Bayer, DSM, IKEA, Maersk, PepsiCo, Target, and Walt Disney. His services have mostly consisted of advising and training managers throughout 25 nations, most of them in the European Union and Asia-Pacific.
Gabor holds the qualification Certified Management Consultant, granted by the International Council of Management Consulting Institutes (ICMCI). He has the distinction of passing the qualifying test in Mandarin, making him the only non-Chinese consultant in China to hold that certification.
One of Gabor’s consulting specialties has been competency assessment and modelling. He has supported clients as they used strategic goals to define core competencies, integrated job descriptions with the competency model, developed measurable indicators for the core competencies, and assessed individuals against those indicators. He also has experience with competency-based performance management, and with the modelling of technical competencies including sales, service, human resources, management, and leadership.
As an active participant in the Certified Management Consultant Global Institute and the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China, Gabor shares worthy new ideas with other leaders in his industry. He is the author of Breaking the Circle: Vicious Circles in Business, published in 2013 by his consultancy, and of Economic Relations and Political Dialogue Between the EU and East Asia: The Functions of the Interregional Process, published in 2014 by VDM Verlag.
Apart from his profession, Gabor’s passions are kung-fu, SCUBA-diving, reading, and travel.
*VIVIEN PAU is an executive coach who dedicates herself to helping leaders of organizations to believe in themselves, maximize their potential, and lead fulfilling and courageous lives.
Vivien grew up in Hong Kong, and is fluent in Mandarin and Cantonese as well as English. She completed her bachelors at the University of Hong Kong and an MBA at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. During her career she lived and worked for four years in Chicago and Toronto. Her early corporate experience was gained at Citibank, British-American Tobacco, Colliers Jardine, and Royal Trust Canada.
Vivien's most significant corporate experience was her six years with A.C. Nielsen, the world's largest market research company, where she served as managing director and business head of Hong Kong and China, then as director of change management for the Asia-Pacific region. While managing over 250 multinational employees, she helped to build the business at a double-digit rate, improve the efficiency of the operational processes, and boost employee and customer satisfaction. During her time there, Nielsen underwent acquisition, reorganization, and culture change. Vivien spent much time coaching executives to improve their effectiveness within these shifting conditions.
Early in 2012, Vivien received formal certification by the International Coaching Federation as a Professional Certified Coach. She already was a Certified Facilitator and Certified Action Learning Coach. She has coached and facilitated workshops for executives at AkzoNobel, Bayer, Cathay Pacific, Coca-Cola, Emerson, HP, GE, Intercontinental, Li & Fung, Merck, Motorola, NICE Systems, Parker Hannifin, Philips, Standard Bank, and Unilever. Her executive coaching clients have included senior leaders – Chinese, Indian, New Zealander, Australian, Italian, German, Norwegian, English, and American – at Cathay Pacific, ExxonMobil, GSK, HAVI Logistics, Intercontinental, Johnson & Johnson, Levi Strauss, Novartis, Orbotech, Royal Bank of Scotland, SGS, Standard Bank, Swire Beverages, and Thomson Reuters.
Vivien is a founding vice president of the HK International Coaching Community, and a member of the International Association of Certified Coaches and the International Association of Facilitators. Since 2007, she has written for a Hong Kong newspaper a column featuring case studies of her work as an executive coach and facilitator. In May 2009, Vivien's columns were published in a book, A Positive Look at My Strengths: Inspiration of Positive Thinking from an Executive Coach.
Vivien loves reading, travelling, movies, learning, practicing meditation and qi gong, and doing voluntary work for the Children Cancer Foundation and Hong Kong University Graduates Association Education Foundation.
*ANNA HARPER is an executive coach and facilitator who enjoys the complexity and intrigue of the global business environment as well as the creative dialogue that underpins her intercultural service delivery all across Asia-Pacific. She believes that people are most effective when their values and world view are aligned with that of their organization and society. Her approach to executive coaching is informed by psychology, intercultural communication, leadership training, and systemic thinking.
A native of New Zealand, Anna completed a bachelors in fine arts at the University of Canterbury, followed by graduate studies at other universities in communication and design management. In 2003, she received an M.A. in organizational development at the University of Western Sydney. She also has studied extensively at the Summer Institute of Intercultural Communication (Oregon). Anna has received NLP training in systemic thinking and advanced behavioral modeling. She also is certified in Spiral Dynamics Integral, MBTI, BarOn-EQi, FIRO-B, Situational Leadership, SIE (Survey of Influence Effectiveness), and MOT (Managing Organizational Transition).
After receiving her first degree, Anna joined the international division of Elizabeth Arden, for which she worked for 12 years in expatriate positions across Europe and Asia-Pacific; eventually she attained the position of marketing manager for Asia. In the course of her corporate and subsequent career, Anna lived and worked in Japan (where she devoted three years to establishing a joint venture), Hong Kong (where she managed a cultural-change project), and Singapore; these first-hand experiences enabled her to grasp the complexities of identifying and navigating different needs and perspectives.
Since founding her own consultancy in 1991, Anna has coached executives at the C-level and below for companies in China, Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong, Australia, and the United States. Recently, much of Anna’s work has involved executive transition coaching for business unit heads and general managers. Clients have included Ford Motors, Caterpillar, Barclays Global, Cisco, E&J Gallo, Raytheon, Merck Sharp & Dohme, Scherring, Kelloggs, Deutsche Bank, Frucor, Thompson-Reuters, Cathay Pacific, Optus Communications, and Alcon Laboratories. She also facilitates leadership programs for Thompson-Reuters and the U.N.
Anna is the treasurer for Lotus Outreach Australia, an independent, secular, non-profit organization dedicated to improving the living conditions of vulnerable children and their communities through education and healthcare. Otherwise, she enjoys teaching and practicing yoga, reading, traveling, music, art, walking, dancing, and being with her family in New Zealand whenever possible.
*BRIGITTE DEDEN is an executive coach who enjoys supporting organizational leaders as they create diverse, vibrant, and empowering work environments within a global and multicultural context. Fluent in English and German, she also is conversational in Bahasa Indonesia.
A native of Germany, Brigitte received an M.Sc. in mathematics from the University of Cologne, and an MBA from Bradford University in the U.K. She holds certificates in coaching from Newfield Network, Henley Business School, and the NeuroLeadership Group. Brigitte also is certified as a Leadership Transition Coach by Fischer Group International, as a facilitator of the Global Mindset Indicator from Thunderbird School of Global Management, and as a Schemacoach from the Institute of Schematherapy. Accredited as a coach by the International Coach Federation, she also holds accreditation as a practitioner of the MBTI.
After completing university, Brigitte began her global career as an independent IT consultant in Jakarta. Returning to Europe four years later, she joined Accenture where, during the following 13 years, she held roles with increasing responsibility in Germany, the U.K., and Singapore. In her final role as a senior manager, Brigitte led high performance teams to design and implement innovative IT and business solutions for financial services clients. As member of Accenture's executive teams in Europe and Singapore, she was involved in strategic planning, business development, and transformational change programs. Finally, Brigitte was a member of Accenture's European Risk Management Group and a co-initiator of the German Competence Centre for Enterprise Performance Management in Banking.
Inspired by experience as an internal coach at Accenture, Brigitte founded her own coaching company in 2007. She works regularly with high potentials, senior leaders and executives. Private organizational clients include Robert Bosch, Johnson & Johnson, IHG, Jones Lang LaSalle, Cargill, Emerson Process Management, J.P. Morgan, ANZ, Standard Chartered Bank, EON, Toll Group, Thomson Online Benefit, TechniData, IPAC, and InnovaBest. Public sector clients include Monetary Authority of Singapore, Singapore Economic Development Board, National University of Singapore, Singapore Polytechnic, Singapore General Hospital, National University Health System, Tan Tock Seng Hospital, Institute of Mental Health, Khoo Teck Puat Hospital, HCA Hospice Care, plus other public service organizations and ministries.
Brigitte is married with teenaged twin daughters. Residents of Singapore since the late 1990s, the family has a passion for international travel and building friendships worldwide. Apart from that, Brigitte enjoys art, music, theatre and movies, reading, and daily jogging rounds in the Singapore's Botanic Garden.
*SHARON TAN, a native of Singapore with experience throughout Asia, is an executive coach who also trains and facilitates. Her corporate experience is primarily in the areas of human resources management and competency development. Clients respect her professionalism, openness, and sincerity. Her personal mission is "to make the difference that counts."
Sharon holds a B.A. in business administration from the University of South Australia. She is certified as a coach by Corporate Coach University; has additional qualifications in DISC and Emergenetics; and is qualified to deliver several of the Ken Blanchard organization's standard offerings. Sharon coaches and trains equally well in English and Mandarin; she's also capable of communicating when necessary in Cantonese, Hokkien, and Teochew.
Sharon's professional career began in Singapore with Polysar Asia-Pacific, where she was an assistant to the technical director. She then went to Nokia, where she held positions of increasing responsibility between 1993 and 1999. In one role, she was responsible not only for managing the company's annual 360° appraisal exercises for executives and promising managers, but also for integrating Nokia's global performance management system throughout Asia-Pacific. Sharon's final role with Nokia was as an in-house competency development consultant; she oversaw the company's training and development initiative in management & leadership, and worked with senior managers to identify and develop high potential managers.
Sharon relocated to China in 2000 and became an independent consultant. Her work has included executive coaching, coach training for managers, and the facilitation of leadership and team programs. Her clients have included Akzo Nobel, Accenture, Agfa Graphics, Bayer Materials Science, Bearing Point China, Bosch Rexroth China, Boston Scientific, Coca Cola, Corning China, Covidien Healthcare, DHL China, Dow Corning, Newell Rubbermaid, Royal Sun Alliance Insurance, Sara Lee, Guoman Hotels, Hilton Hotels, Swissotel Shanghai, Nokia, Tyco Electronics, and Stryker in both China and Taiwan.
Sharon says that her corporate and consulting experience enables her to relate well to the challenges faced by executives and their organizations. Now living again in her native Singapore, she is eager to work with anyone who intends to strive for personal and professional alignment and balance in life.
Sharon is married and has two teenaged children. Besides her close-knit family, she maintains friendships in many countries around the globe. Her personal mission "to make a difference that counts" had led Sharon to participate in charity sponsorships and fundraising in support of special medical needs (especially kidney failure) and children's education.
*SWEE LIN TEOH is an organizational consultant, leadership assessor, and executive coach who advocates that we live in the “school of life”: the issues and obstacles we face are opportunities for us to reflect, challenge, and change our internal mindsets so we can develop ourselves into more effective leaders.
A native of Malaysia, Swee Lin earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree with First Class Honours from the Northern University of Malaysia. She is a Master Certified Coach from the Behavioral Coaching Institute (Australia), and has completed both the Core Essentials and Advanced Corporate Coaching programs with CoachU (USA). She was trained in Gestalt technology by The Space Between (Australia/United Kingdom); she now co-facilitates foundational Gestalt-in-Organizations programs in Asia. Additionally, Swee Lin is certified in Myer-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), Hogan’s Personality Assessment, Birkman Occupational and Behavioral Assessment, and Management Research Group Leadership Effective Analysis (MRG 360). She works comfortably with people of diverse ethnic backgrounds, conversing in English, Malay, or Mandarin.
Swee Lin began her career as a business process consultant with Accenture in 1993, where she conceptualized and configured business systems, redesigned business processes and structures, and managed change implementation projects. She later joined Atos-Origin, then Avanade, and finally Microsoft, organizations for which she helped establish local and regional consulting practices while continuing to provide consulting and project management services to clients. As consulting practice director, she won awards for her contribution to high customer satisfaction, publicly referenced projects, and profitable businesses, e.g., Asia Pacific Excellence Award 1997, SAP Employee of the Year 1998, Outstanding Performer of the Year 1998, ASEAN Excellence Award 1999, and CEO Award 2001.
During 2005, Swee Lin redirected her professional focus to begin supporting business leaders in their personal development journey. She worked first for Sheppard Moscow, then Right Management, and finally, during 2010, founded her own consulting practice. She now coaches middle managers and senior leaders, provides leadership assessments for selection and development, and designs and facilitates interventions to improve individual, team, and organizational effectiveness. Her clients have included Tesco, Skanem, Philips, Citibank, Syngenta, BHP Billiton, Exxon-Mobil, Asian Development Bank, and Royal Bank of Scotland.
A resident of Singapore, Swee Lin is a member of the Asia Pacific Alliance of Coaches. Outside of her professional life, she spends much of her time and energy developing community teams and team leaders dedicated to sustainable agriculture, holistic well-being, and community services across the Asia-Pacific region.
*MICHAEL S. DAVID designs and delivers corporate training workshops on leadership development, cross-cultural effectiveness, customer relations, talent development, team building, and doing business in India. He also serves his client organizations as an executive coach.
Michael holds a bachelors degree in commerce and a post-graduate diploma in banking from the University of Puna as well as a masters degree in commerce from Shivaji University. He attended the human process laboratories offered by the Indian Society for Applied Behavioural Sciences, and he has qualified as a cross-cultural trainer with General Motors Relocation Services.
Michael’s early corporate career was in advertising, where he held creative and client-service responsibilities. During that time he also served as a visiting faculty member at business schools such as Symbiosis Institute of Business Management.
During his long independent career, Michael has facilitated, trained, and consulted extensively in the area of cross-cultural effectiveness and collaboration, and cross-cultural team-building. These activities, for numerous client companies, have been conducted both as stand-alone interventions of one and two days, and as modules within managerial and leadership development programs. His work with cross-border teams, delivered in the U.S., U.K., and the Netherlands, has been for Essel Propack and Suzlon. Including Michael’s many other types of training deliveries, he has trained nearly 60,000 managers and executives for DSP Merrill Lynch, Vodafone, Cadbury India, Algorithmics Toronto, Morgan Stanley India, Chase Manhattan Bank, Lucent Technologies, Amtrex Hitachi, Cummins India, Godrej & Boyce, and others.
During his parallel career as an executive coach, Michael has contributed to the leadership development of CEOs, vice presidents, and middle managers at Johnson Controls, Pharma Link, Eurostar Diamonds/Dimexon Diamonds, Hindustan Times-Fever 104, Dawney Day, Morgan Stanley, Johnson & Johnson, and Whirlpool India. Michael's work as a coach addresses leadership effectiveness, cross-cultural and interpersonal communication, diversity challenges, and people management.
In the course of his training and coaching, Michael travels not only throughout India but also to North America, Europe, Israel, and Southeast Asia. He is a member of the panel of trainers for the U.K. firm Frost & Sullivan, and he’s a training partner at the Tata Management Training Centre.
Michael’s wife, Lorraine, is trained in industrial psychology and counseling; she collaborates with him whenever there’s a need for specialized behavioral inputs. Michael enjoys listening to Western classical music and taking long drives in the country. For him, combining both of these pleasures is the ultimate relaxation.
*JEAN-FRANÇOIS COUSIN is an executive coach as well as a cross-cultural leadership consultant and trainer. This phase of his professional life follows a successful career in global leadership roles including manufacturing, marketing, business development, and general management.
A native of France, Jean-François graduated as an engineer from Ecole Centrale Paris, then pursued executive education at The Fuqua School of Business at Duke University in North Carolina. He is accredited as a Master Certified Coach by the International Coach Federation, and has been trained in NLP, "clean language," Extended DISC, and other executive coaching techniques. He is fluent in English and French, and has some understanding of Thai, German, and Spanish.
Jean-François's 15-year corporate career was with Lafarge, the "world leader in building materials" and a member of the Fortune 500. Ten of those years found him in Asia, holding senior management positions with P&L responsibilities. In his final corporate role, Jean-François was responsible for the worldwide strategy of a two-billion-euro division. In this role, he informally coached business unit managers in 32 countries, usually about their business development efforts, and conducted missions in 40 countries.
As a global executive coach, Jean-François is working across a variety of organizations and industries. He has enabled more than 300 C-level executives and other senior leaders to adjust to different cultures, fine-tune their strategic planning, and develop their leadership and communication skills. He also is passionate about cross-cultural leadership consulting and training. His frequent cross-cultural workshops have been attended by more than 600 executives to date and his public-speaking engagements have attracted over 3,000 attendees. His regular clients are found in Europe, Asia, North America, The Middle-East, and Australia, and include Unilever, Philips, L'Oréal, Mazda, Michelin, Barclays, S.C. Johnson, Hermes, Carrefour, Akzo Nobel, BNP Paribas, ING, Essilor, SAP, Amadeus, Akzo Nobel, KFC, Pizza Hut, Tesco, Air France-KLM, Bosch, Hanes, Carrefour, Deloitte, and HSBC.
Jean-François is an active participant in the Asian community of executive coaches. He trains and supervises coaches. He devotes more than 80 hours each year to his own professional development, and his own coaching is supervised. He is a co-author of Coaching in Asia (Candid Creation Publishing, 2011), and is at work co-authoring a second book on executive coaching in Thailand.
A resident of Thailand, Jean-François pursues pastimes such as sailing, skiing, playing music, reading, cinema, and travelling (so far to over 75 countries.
ASTRID KAINZBAUER has been fascinated from childhood with other countries and ways of life. She chose a career in the field of intercultural relations, uniting university work and corporate consulting. Astrid ranks as one of the outstanding interculturalists in Asia.
A native of Austria, Astrid holds a Ph.D. degree in international business from the Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration. For her dissertation, she conducted a study of British-German differences in cross-cultural training. Since then, as a university lecturer in the area of intercultural management and organizational behavior, she has taught at business schools in Australia, China, The Netherlands, Denmark, Croatia, France, Portugal, Korea, and Thailand. Besides her native language, German, Astrid is fluent in English, French, and Spanish, and is currently dedicating herself to improving her spoken and written Thai.
While still at Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, Astrid was deputy director of international relations, in which role she coordinated and organized projects in China, Germany, Italy, Ukraine, Romania, Russia, the U.K., and others. In 2005, she was invited to become associate dean of business at Asian University, in Thailand, where she relaunched the MBA program and introduced a successful summer program for international business students called "Asian Experience." Currently, at Mahidol University in Thailand, Astrid is the manager of international relations at the College of Management, where she's in charge of executive "Asian Management" programs for international managers.
As an independent consultant, Astrid conducts executive training and coaching in the areas of international relocation, cross-cultural teams, international negotiations, and similar topics for companies around the world. Her client list includes Benda-Lutz International, Plansee Metall GmbH Austria, Hutchison Austria, General Electric Hungary, Solectron Romania, Opel Thailand, GKN Thailand, GlaxoSmithKline Thailand, General Motors Thailand, Merck Thailand, Danone Thailand, Chevron Thailand, Johnson & Johnson, and Bayer Vietnam.
Astrid's research interests include intercultural management and intercultural training as well as cultural influences on instructional styles; she has been published in the Journal of Cross-Cultural Competence & Management and several others in the U.S., Europe, and Asia. Her current research is comparing management in Thailand and Germany. Currently a co-editor of the book series Management Across Borders from IKO Verlag in Frankfurt, Astrid is co-founder and vice-president of the Society for Intercultural Education, Training And Research in Austria.
In her spare time, Astrid enjoys travelling and exploring new countries. Her trips have recently taken her to Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, and Uganda. She engages in biking, diving, skiing and – in the South American Andes and the Asian Himalayas – mountain climbing.
*PERRY LAM is a senior executive coach and corporate trainer with experience in leadership development, team optimization, communications, customer service, and sales & marketing. He has lived and worked in Korea, Hong Kong, Japan, China, and the Philippines, which contributes to his nuanced familiarity with differences in business values and practices across Asia-Pacific.
Perry holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the College of William & Mary in Virginia. He has completed executive programs at the Wharton School and Columbia University in the U.S., and at the Cranfield School of Management in the U.K. He was accredited as one of the first graduates of the Asia program of Corporate Coach University International, and he is an accredited administrator of several assessment tools including DISC.
Perry began his professional career as a sales executive with the Xerox Corporation. Then, for 20 years beginning in 1982, he was a business leader with DHL Worldwide Express, where he served in a variety of roles and eventually rose to director of sales for the Asia-Pacific region. He initiated DHL’s “Sales Force Academy and Leadership Centre," which included an internal coaching program to accelerate the development of the leadership team throughout Asia, then build DHL’s leadership bench-strength and pipeline. He also led a broad range of strategic leadership initiatives and management development programs globally as well as regionally.
Perry became an independent consultant and coach in 2002, working with leaders to improve the quality of their lives and productiveness of their careers. He is particularly impactful when addressing leadership effectiveness, communication style, cross-cultural alignment, entrepreneurship, and sales & marketing. Some of Perry’s assignments involve the on-boarding of expatriates newly arrived in Korea, and preparing Korean managers taking on global roles outside of Korea. Perry is often requested to work with C-level leaders as well as board members throughout Asia. His clients have included Allianz, Goldman Sachs, Grand Hyatt, Johnson & Johnson, LG Electronics, Morgan Stanley, Nike, Novartis, Prudential, Roche, Samsung, Standard Charter Bank, and UBS.
Perry is an active member of the American Chamber of Commerce in Seoul, serving as chair of the marketing and communications committee. He also is deeply involved in the local Toastmasters Club, where he is a “Distinguished Toastmaster.” He often is requested to be a keynote speaker or a leadership and communications facilitator at national Toastmasters conferences. In addition, Perry has served as a coach for various TEDx speakers.
*ALEX PARK is an executive coach who applies well-established coaching approaches and theatrical improvisation techniques to improve coachees’ creativity, communication, and confidence, then accompany them toward greater personal and professional effectiveness.
A native of Korea who immigrated to the U.S. at age 15, Alex holds a bachelor’s in economics from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business. To fortify his grasp of leadership, management, and training, he has attended programs at Oxford University’s SAID School of Business and at INSEAD. In addition, he holds a certificate from the Foundation of Positive Psychology. He recently completed a five weeks of improv training program at Improv Olympic Chicago. Fluent in Korean and English, Alex works professionally in both languages.
Alex’s leadership career started during the mid-1980s after he completed Citibank’s executive development program. Subsequently, he was employed in New York, Zürich, London, and Seoul by financial institutions such as UBS and Standard Chartered Bank, moving up the ladder from successful trader to respected industry executive. Besides his leadership roles within banks, Alex has held related positions including president of the Korea Swap Dealers Association and member of the Bank of Korea’s Monetary Policy Advisory Board.
Alex’s coaching career started several years before he retired from the banking industry. While serving as a senior leader of Standard Chartered Bank, he was one of a few executives chosen to provide coaching for the internal staff. Since becoming an independent practitioner, Alex has worked with coachees from numerous backgrounds on a range of challenges including navigating a career transition, adapting to a new culture, developing executive presence, building business strategy, improving communication skills, and attaining work-life balance. Recently, Alex’s clients for coaching have included Procter & Gamble, Standard Chartered Bank, and the Korea-based global tobacco company, KT&G.
Since returning to live in Korea, Alex has been supporting his U.S. alma maters there as a board trustee, head of an interview committee, and president of the alumni club. He also serves as president of his local Rotary Club, auditor of the Yang Hyun Foundation, and chair of the Financial Market Committee of the American Chamber of Commerce in Korea.
Alex’s wife is a Juilliard-trained soprano; they have three children. During his leisure time, Alex composes and performs music. Recently he founded the Korea Improv Society to better enable his fellow-countrymen to develop their creativity, communication skills, and confidence.
GALE METCALF & JOEL WALLACH are a husband-wife team with more than 40 years of experience working together. Most of that time has been dedicated to helping people adapt and thrive when working in cultures different from their own. They have lived and worked in Malaysia, the Philippines, China, Taiwan, Egypt, Cambodia, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, and Kenya as well as the United States. In addition, they have consulted or provided training workshops in Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, and Myanmar.
Gale has a masters' degree in education and another in public health. Joel has a masters' degree in community psychology with a focus on international issues. Their first professional experiences (separately) were in public health in Malaysia. Along the way they met, married, and in 1977 returned to Kuala Lumpur as co-directors of a community counseling program serving the expatriate community. In total, Joel and Gale have lived and worked in Malaysia for 14 years, and in Asia for 24 years.
Moving to Egypt in 1980, Joel and Gale served for seven years as co-directors of the Community Services Association of Cairo, leaving in 1987 to establish the Community Services Center of Taipei, an organization they directed for the next seven years. Throughout their time in managing these centers, they provided orientation programs for newly arrived expatriates as a key component of their work. In addition, they served as consultants and trainers for the U.S. State Department, focusing on the cross-cultural adjustment needs of expatriate communities worldwide.
Beginning in 1988, Joel and Gale expanded their cross-cultural training to embrace global corporate clients, assisting host country nationals as well as Western expatriates. They developed programs for Asian and African managers on how to increase their effectiveness when working with European and American colleagues in global organizations. Over the years, Gale and Joel have not only managed diverse multinational staff and led a variety of organizations in Asia and Africa, but have also created innovative programs to enhance staff competencies and organizational global competitiveness.
More than 80 global corporations, international NGOs, and government agencies have taken advantage of training programs developed and delivered by Gale and Joel, including First Solar Malaysia, Prudential Malaysia, DuPont, Intel, Texas Instruments, Motorola, UEM Sunrise, McDonalds, Degussa, Deutsche Telekom, ICI, Eli Lilly, Exxon/Mobil, Ericson, Amoco, Citibank, and the State Department and Peace Corps of the United States.
Drawing on their decades of first-hand experience with the challenges faced by local employees of American corporations, Gale and Joel authored Working with Americans: a Practical Guide to Business Success for Asian Managers (now out-of-print). The book was translated into Korean and Chinese. In addition, they are the authors of numerous articles on cross-cultural management and intercultural adjustment. From their base in Penang, they provide orientation programs for expatriates relocating to Malaysia and Singapore as well as cross-cultural management training for Asian staff working in multinational companies.
Joel and Gale volunteer with local NGOs, where they mentor staff and support community health and education initiatives. They regularly travel to Geneva to spend time with their son, his wife, and their new granddaughter, Maari.
*TADATOSHI (TOSHI) FUJIWARA has decades of experience as a global business leader with the NEC corporation. Based on his worldwide business expertise, leadership of various NEC organizations, and formal training, Toshi provides executive coaching to help decision-makers within large organizations maximize their potential to organize, inspire, and lead others.
Toshi grew up in Nagasaki, Japan, and learned electronic engineering at the local technical institute. Over the years he has gained several coaching qualifications, including practitioner of The Leadership Circle’s 360° assessment, and formal certification as a Co-Active Coach following his training by the Coaches Training Institute (CTI). Toshi is recognized by the International Coach Federation as a Professional Certified Coach (PCC). He delivers coaching and other professional services in Japanese, and he also speaks conversational English.
Toshi’s career-long association with the NEC corporation began as a design engineer in the telecommunication field. Eventually, he worked in systems engineering, project management, and business development within NEC’s telecommunication network unit. Over the years, Toshi gained first-hand business experience in Asia-Pacific, North America, Latin America, Europe, and the Middle East. His longest expatriate assignment occurred during the mid-1980s, when he lived for over four years in New Delhi, India, leading a rural communication project that widely deployed switching systems; he also lived for two years in London during 2011-12. Toshi’s senior-level responsibilities within NEC included serving as general manager of the global mobile infrastructure unit, as a board member of the NEC Group in New Zealand and Hong Kong, and chief technical officer and senior VP of NEC’s regional headquarters in Europe.
During 2013, NEC corporation decided to deploy executive coaching as one of tools for transforming the company; Toshi was selected as one of the first internal coaches. It was at this time that he received his Co-Active Coaching training from CTI, which brought him into the coaching world. In early 2017, Toshi left the NEC corporation and became an independent coach. Between his internal and independent coaching deliveries, he has recorded over 700 hours working with 50 executives.
In his spare time, Toshi and his wife are completing the 500 walking courses all around Japan that were identified by the Japanese Walking Association. Toshi undertook this challenge in 2013 and found that he enjoys developing personal relationships with people living in the localities he passes through. He also loves to visit historical and natural sites, and to sample unique local foods.
*MASAE ARAKI coaches executives and senior leaders of global businesses, helping them to establish behaviors that enhance their own learning and development. She guides her coachees to tap their own internal strengths to prepare for transitions to broader responsibilities.
Raised and educated in Japan, Masae earned a graduate Certificate in Executive and Professional Coaching from the University of Texas’s School of Management and Organizational Behavior Studies, accredited by International Coach Federation (ICF). She is now recognized by ICF as a Professional Certified Coach (PCC). Masae is equally able to coach in Japanese and English.
Masae’s initial employment was at the Akasaka Prince Hotel, after which she moved to the Tokyo office of Ferrero, the Italian confectioner, to become logistics manager. Her responsibilities included marketing and sales as well as logistics, and included working closely with Glico, an Osaka-based alliance partner of Ferrero, to plan strategies for marketing, sales, and importing. When Ferrero tripled its size within one year, Masae took the lead in reducing employment costs by, among other things, revising its logistical systems. Her responsibilities frequently took her to Italy, Belgium, Luxemburg, Australia, and Hong Kong. After 13 years, Masae left Ferrero and moved to Los Angeles to accept a position as a market researcher with Nesstech International. A few years later, she returned to Tokyo and became an independent market consultant, helping expanding companies to develop new markets, identify global trends, and adapt products. For example, she assisted the manufacturer of the SteamFast steam cleaner to adjust its product for Japanese users, leading to millions of dollars in sales.
Based in Tokyo for the past several years, Masae coaches business leaders and high-potential managers in a wide variety of industries. Among her clients are the Japanese firms NTT Group, Recruit, Reit Japan, Joyful Restaurants, and Pacific Golf Management; and the American firms Belkin International, Hyatt Hotels, and Bloomberg.
Masae is a director of the Japan Chapter of ICF, for which she oversees education and credentials, organizing seminars for coaches in both Japanese and English. In addition, she created her own proprietary series of Core Competency programs; ICF accredited this program and authorizes Masae to award ICF Continuing Coach Education certificates.
Masae lives in Tokyo, where she enjoys yoga, ballet, and playing piano to recharge. Although she likes to travel abroad for business and leisure, she also greatly values spending time with her family and friends in Japan.
*ROGER SHERRIN, an executive coach specializing in global leadership, works with leaders in multi-national companies. Based in Japan after a worldwide career as a senior officer with the U.S. Army, Roger balances his mission focus and sound leadership principles with compassion and self-mastery grounded in Asian traditional arts.
Roger holds an MBA from Hitotsubashi University Graduate School of Corporate Strategy and London Business School. He earned a BA in psychology and Asian studies from the University of Texas at Austin. He is an ICF Associate Certified Coach (ACC), a Board Certified Coach (BCC), and a Sherpa Certified Executive Coach. He studied executive coaching through the Japan America Management Institute of Science. Roger is certified in True Colors assessments and the Marshall Goldsmith Global Leader of the Future 360 Assessment. Roger provides professional services in English and speaks conversational Japanese.
Working with general officers and senior staff directors, Roger served as a regional analyst and senior staff officer for the U.S. Army. He completed assignments in Japan, England, Belgium, and the U.S. He graduated from advanced Army leadership programs, and he has participated in the Japan Market Expansion Competition and the Japan Exchange & Teaching Program.
Roger serves as a strategic thinking partner to increase a leader’s critical thinking and awareness of expanded options. One executive said of Roger, “He was able to exhibit empathy and compassion and an active listening style that proved invaluable. His greatest gift was his ability to ask probing opened-ended questions. These questions caused me to think about my motivations behind the motivations. He gave me the freedom to thoughtfully work through some of the issues and, at times, was able to give a different perspective for my consideration.” A Japanese CEO wrote, “…he gives me several valuable hints to notice and begin to rethink things more deeply and practically. He tried to understand my business and raised several meaningful questions to get the clear picture of my business and the company. Through several conversations and questions and answers we have reached the necessity and importance to change the company culture.”
Roger is a writer, a professional musician, and member of the Foreign Correspondent’s Club of Japan. He is a practitioner of yoga, tai chi, and Kyudo Japanese archery. Roger’s wife is an M.D. and Director of Anesthesiology at a hospital in Japan. They have a wonderful daughter attending International School.
*NADINE SLATER is an executive coach focusing on developing global leaders. She enables business leaders to “raise their game” in situations of challenge, change, and transition, enhancing each coachee’s leadership effectiveness through clarity, direction, and focus.
A German national, Nadine received her education at WHU - Otto Beisheim School of Management (Germany), Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Grenoble (France), and Australian Graduate School of Management (Sydney). She is an ICF accredited executive coach (ACC) and a Marshall Goldsmith Stakeholder Centered Coach, and she’s qualified in the DISC, MBTI, and Leadership Circle profiling tools. Nadine has lived and worked in Europe as well as in the U.S. and Australia. She delivers services in English and German, and also speaks French, Spanish, some Mandarin, and some Japanese.
Nadine began her career working with the CEO of Bertelsmann’s music division; she quickly progressed into sales and helped build the European sales function in the company’s first regional headquarters. As international operations director, she then joined the senior management team and participated in the integration of Zomba and the merger with Sony Music.
Leveraging her M&A experience, Nadine joined the communications consultancy Maitland with a dual role. On the client side, she advised on cross-border M&A transactions and corporate positioning; on the business development side, she managed Maitland’s international partner network, AMO Global. Having coordinated a multi-national communications campaign around Mittal Steel’s merger with Arcelor, Nadine helped AMO win the industry award “Financial Consultancy of the Year” in 2006. During Nadine’s years of working directly with its board, AMO was consistently ranked at the top of M&A league tables, with 300+ deals worth over $400bn in 2007 alone. These experiences – including collaboration with people of 15 nationalities at several hierarchical levels – enabled Nadine to hone her business acumen and intercultural skills.
Nadine became an independent coach and consultant during 2009/10 and moved with her young family to Beijing in 2012, where she coached executives in international companies and organisations active across Asia. Having relocated to Japan at the start of 2016, she now delivers executive coaching and leadership and team development workshops. Nadine’s clients have included Sony, Electricité de France, FrieslandCampina, ReSource Pro, Daimler, Fairmont, Total, The British Council, and Johnson & Johnson.
Nadine lives in Kobe with her English husband and two daughters. She enjoys exploring new cultures, connecting with people, and tasting new foods. She recharges by doing Yoga and playing with her girls.
SONOKO MIZUTA has been active cross-culturally for most of her adult life through studying, training, and consulting as well as living in distant cultures, and through writing articles and books on intercultural topics.
Born in Tokyo, Sonoko spent a year in France while completing her first degree at Tokyo University for Foreign Studies. After working for Seiko Time Company and being involved in a major French-Swiss-Japanese-U.S. joint venture, she attended Stanford University and received a masters degree in intercultural communication. Since then, Sonoko has devoted herself to the cross-cultural field. At Japan Women's University she developed and taught courses on intercultural communication, simultaneously serving as a trainer, coach, and consultant for Japanese and foreign businesses. In 1990, Sonoko followed her expatriate husband to New York and began working on a Ph.D. in intercultural education at New York University.
In 1988, Japan UNESCO and a major Japanese newspaper gave Sonoko an award to encourage her contributions to international knowledge. She thereupon became a prolific writer. Her books include Theories on International Human Relationships, declared the most recommendable book of 1989 by the Japan Library Association; Intercultural Communication for Japanese (1990); Culture Shock — Foreigners' Experiences in Japan (1990); and An Invitation to Intercultural Communication (1998).
Sonoko's husband is an executive of a joint venture created by U.S. and Japanese investment banks. Their two children began their schooling in New York City. When the family returned to Japan, both children...and their parents...found the readjustment challenging; as a result, Sonoko deeply understands children's as well as adult's relocation and readaptation issues.
In her leisure time, Sonoko enjoys playing tennis with her husband and doing Teaquon-do with her students.