An Interview with
Liesbeth van der Linden MBA
17 October 2019
Tell us about your background, and how you came to found your company?
Prior to starting my Leadership Coaching business GLTD Ltd., I was general manager of M2Leisure Asia, a leisure development consultancy in Shanghai, China where I worked with Asian investors and local governments to help develop their leisure and tourism projects.
Before my move to China, I worked for Eiffel in the Netherlands, a project consultancy company working with top 100 clients. In my role I have lead process improvement teams and implemented new ways of working with companies as NXP, ASML and large insurance companies.
Having worked in different corporate environments for many years, I have always been fascinated by leadership; what makes some people successful leaders and others struggling managers?
Is there a so-called X-factor and can it be developed or is it a talent? Through lots of study, coach training and working as a corporate trainer, I found out it is not the X-factor but something I call the E-factor which is the level of energy, authenticity, self-awareness and a learning mindset that sets high performers apart from others. When starting applying Energy Coaching, I started seeing magnificent results, not only in clients' success in their work environment but in all aspects of their life. Energy Leadership research has shown that people with higher levels of energy actually made more money, got promoted quicker and had a better sense of financial success and overall life satisfaction. So that formed the basis of my coaching business.
What is most important to you and your organization – mission, vision, or core values? Why?
At business school we have been taught the ‘hard’ skills; how to create strategies, understand finance, optimize operating processes, but never were we taught about communication, relationships and empathy; these are called the ‘soft’ skills, but without them no business is not going to survive, so we see them as core values.
Our mission is 'to help business leaders thrive in Asia' through raising their levels of energy and consciousness of themselves and the people around them, allowing them to tap into their full potential so they can achieve the goals they want.
Can you explain briefly how your service(s)/product(s) works?
When people are interested to see what energy coaching could do for them, we usually set a date for a complimentary Discovery Coaching session of about 45-60 minutes. They will then have a first powerful coaching experience and talk deeper about their goals. At the end of the Discovery Session, we will explain the way we can work together and if both client and coach decide at the end it is a good fit we can continue to work together.
A next step is often for clients to take the Energy Leadership Index (E.L.I.) Assessment which is an attitudinal assessment, which is based on a energy/action model. This assessment differs from personality assessments as it is not intended to label a person and have them work well within that label. Instead, it measures your level of energy based on your attitude, or perception and perspective of the world. By working with a coach using the E.L.I., you can alter your attitude and perspective, make a shift in your consciousness, and increase your energy as the result. Once clients realize that their level of consciousness is directly related to their actions, they can move from functioning effectively to functioning optimally.
The usual length of time for coach and client to work together is 3-6 months.
How has the industry been changing in recent years?
Having spent the last 2 years in Europe and having only recently moved back to Asia this summer, I do not have the most recent local industry changes fully in scope yet. However, I can comment on the apparent increasing demand for personal development through coaching, not only on executive and management level, but also for people in key positions in companies both Europe and Asia. Although coaching is not as common yet as in the US, where executive and leadership coaching are a quite common phenomenon.
What makes you different from what’s currently available in the market?
Energy Leadership Coaching is quite new in Hong Kong and not a lot of coaches have Master Practitioners in-house to work with the ELI assessment tool. However, Energy Coaching is a widely recognized in the USA, where it was developed by company iPEC. So our company is quite unique in applying the Energy Leadership concepts and tools and I see extraordinary results with our clients. As energy is essential for accomplishing almost anything, it is considered to be at the heart of what drives performance in the workplace and beyond.
What does the future hold for your company?
Again, we are very confident that the so-called 'soft' skills are becoming more and more important for today's leaders, especially in the challenging ever-changing circumstances which are becoming the new normal in companies. Moreover, as leaders in top positions have an impact on the teams around them, their success, their actions, behaviors and influence can have a huge effect on many others and cause a ripple effect increasing success for the company as a whole. As long as there are people who want to make a difference in the world by striving to be successful using their full potential, I am very positive about the future.