Leadership and Coaching

Everyone loves a promotion, right? But be careful what you wish for! Every time we are given a new role with increased responsibilities, the transition can be rough, and the new skills now required can feel daunting according to Huffington Post, Forbes.com, and a variety of Harvard Business Review articles.

Any shift in role involves more than simply adding new tasks to one’s daily routine; it actually calls upon us to expand our sense of self. When roles change, leaders encounter challenges that are usually unfamiliar and not part of their self- concept. Leadership coaching can help executives manage the inevitable challenges involved in role transition, promotions, attention to long range planning and productive team work.

When leaders are able to walk their talk, people listen and are likely to follow, improving the levels of enthusiasm, trust, and team effectiveness throughout a team or organization. Leaders get even better by recognizing that leadership comes from who you are: your own values, unique strengths, overall well-being, and the ability to inspire hope in yourself and others.

There is a direct link between emotion and successful communication. And in day to day situations, as well as in times of crisis, it’s the leaders who can use a wide range of emotions effectively who gain the most support from their audience.

When it comes to building your personal brand, a coach can be a powerful resource who can help you get out of your own way, stand out, and take action to achieve the things that are truly important to you, that’s why in Stetson University’s Executive MBA program, coaching as an integral part of the curriculum throughout the 18-month program experience.

Your coach can help you to:

  • Get clear about your goals. Your company may be pulling you in one direction, while your manager is giving you different advice based on other criteria. Your coach will help you determine what’s really important to you and help you stay focused on that.
  • Keep you on track and moving forward toward new levels of achievement by identifying blind spots. They help you figure out what you don’t know, and they clue you in to things you may not be able to see.
  • Know the difference between weaknesses you need to fix and those that are best left as they are. This can help you invest time and energy only in the most fruitful opportunities.
  • Get from point A to B faster than you could on your own, helping you differentiate yourself from the pack and advance your career at a quicker clip.

After you work with a coach for a while, you can start to adopt those powerful questioning techniques, which helps you become a better listener. This is just one of the many ways you can integrate a coaching style into your own leadership approach.

Simply put, a coach will help you stoke your success. How much is that worth to you?

Marshmallow Challenge & Simulation Everest- Cohort 13

Stetson University’s Executive MBA Cohort 13 is underway. This dynamic group of talented managers is navigating the classroom experience and learning about each other as the next 17-months will be a result of collaboration, transformation, and challenging work.

Currently in their first course, Management & Leadership, the student’s awareness of their impact on others in the work environment is highlighted. Focus is on developing constructive approaches and methods to enhance creativity, innovation, employee motivation, and career success. Cohesiveness is formed as well as strengths and areas of opportunity are recognized.

The cohort has written a mission statement, “Growing personally and professionally while enjoying and embracing the experience!”  The cohort quickly realized that the Stetson way of learning will be challenging and a mix of diverse activities that elevate the “spark” of inquisitiveness and exploration through deep collaboration and faculty facilitation by Michelle DeMoss and Greg McCann.  In this course, Dr. Michelle DeMoss facilitated TED talk activities – Marshmallow Challenge, a Harvard Business Review Simulation – Everest, and One on One Executive Coaching are just some of the components that have added to the learning evolution!  Students were encouraged to “color outside the lines” and find new creative ways of thinking and doing things. The result was undeniable satisfying.

Simulation Everest in progress- Team 1

Simulation Everest in progress- Team 1 – “Super Sherpas”

Simulation Everest in progress- Team 2

Simulation Everest in progress- Team 2 – “The Summit Survivors”

Simulation Everest in Progress- Team 3

Simulation Everest in Progress- Team 3 – “The Yetis”

Marshmallow Challenge

Marshmallow Challenge

Near the conclusion of the first course, each student receives Executive Coaching to explore their unique situation and aspirations with our coach, Greg McCann,  “The Cohort’s commitment to deepening their self-awareness and empathy as the foundation for their leadership practice was evidenced in the coaching sessions where each leader was asked to reflect on themselves, what issues in their lives have them stuck or have been unaddressed, and how they might take ownership for them as part of their ongoing leadership development. We don’t just study leadership, we practice it”. This coaching will continue at regular intervals each term and within courses to aid in their growth.

Lastly, the culminating exercise in this course requires that each student write a Professional Development Plan that will guide their individual “practice” during the entire EMBA journey. This is an action plan that will provide structure and intentional focus, and will define success on their terms.

Farewell dinner

By: Tom Sharman

After a wonderful week experiencing what Bangkok has to offer it almost time to say goodbye to this place. Last night was the our farewell dinner at Vertigo Skybar in the Banyan Tree hotel in Bangkok. The experience was amazing and we got to share it with our new friends we made during our visit here.

Please watch the following video:



Another experience riding the Tuk-Tuk!

By: Dave Tucker

This blog will be on my first experience on a vehicle know as the Tuk Tuk. The Tuk Tuk is a unique taxi services offered in Thailand. It is very popular with tourist due to their novelty value. The Tuk Tuk gets its name from the sound of their engineers they are motorised rickshaws. The vehicle can fit up to 3-4 people depending on size. My adventure on a Tuk Tuk was accompany by Rose and Valerie. we decided to a take a Tuk Tuk from the BKM mall back to our hotel, Sofitel. It was a pretty wild adventure as at one point we was traveling through a dark back road and noticed a number of local families with children, roaming dogs and not one tourist in sight. We were traveling in this area for at least a full 5 mins. Once we got back onto the main road, we were driving on the wrong side of the road over large hills for a period of time, going at least 25-35mph. The driver seem like he knew what he was doing during the entire trip but I know that us three were hanging for dear life. We were all good once we reached our hotel. Overall, the driver was very nice from beginning to end. The ride was a bit scary but I would totally do it again. I can’t speak the same for the other two traveling with me though.

Please see the following mini goofy video on the Tuk Tuk.

Thai massage

By: Dave Tucker

This blog will be about my first Thai massage also known as Thai yoga massage in Bangkok. I have received massages before in many different places through out the United States. One thing I was planning on doing is trying out a Thai massage. I decided to try one at a nice establishment that was with in walking distance of my hotel, Sofitel. The place was named Lavana. Trying this place out with me was Rose, Tom, and Ashley. At the beginning of the experience they take you to an area to wash your feet. After spending a few minutes their, they take you to a room where the massage takes place. In this room, I had to change into a Thai outfit for the massage as I will be wear this through out the massage. Therefore, oil will not be used. It all takes place on a padded mat on the floor and the one room has four mats therefore four people can be getting the Thai massage at once. During this hour long massage, the therapist uses her hands, knees, legs, and feet to move me into a series of yoga-like stretches along with the traditional massages to my legs, arms, back and neck. After the massage, I am directed back to the lobby to relax with a cup of hot green tea and a shot of strawberry mousse. The Thai massage was 450 THB, which was a little more than 13 USD. The entire experience was fantastic. I actually enjoyed so much that I booked another massage for the next day! Please see photos from the experience.



Experiencing the Thai massage for the very first time!




Lavana: Thai massage!



When I grow up maybe Ill ride an elephant…

Text and photos: Valerie Drebsky

Video credit: Ashley Forbes and Cristiane Gandin

Today was the day we didn’t know what to expect. We were given the option to drive 2 hours outside of Bangkok to ride an elephant. Sounds crazy.. and it was.

First off – It was amazing watching the scenery as we drive through Thailand outside of the big city of Bangkok. Just from driving through you can pick out the many differences.  The homes, the style, the arcutecture, the markets, etc. all very different! I also should mention throughout this trip we had an incredible tour guide- Tong! We were so grateful to her and as we traveled off to side trips like Tokyo and Hong Kong we very much wished she was there. Ok back to the elephants… Right when we get there we see all these amazing elephants and thankfully a chair on top. It was two to an elephant and you had a guide who helped steer.

download (1)

Riding the elephant!

download (2)

Enjoying the elephant ride!


Enjoying the elephant ride experience!



Posing with the elephant!


This was out of this world. You really had to plan your weigh distribution – we kept tipping over but never fell off! It was so cool! we even went through the water. Some of the cohort took it even farther and bathed with the elephants. This pictures came out amazing and the elephants seemed to love it – many of the cohort feed the elephants bananas. Turned out elephants don’t peel the bananas and they eat more than 5 at a time!! Amazing day and a great way to end our travels in Thailand!”

Please watch the following video to see the students in action while riding the elephant!


Dine in the Dark!

By: Sarah Culver

I’d never considered sight to be a vital sense involved in the dining experience, that is until I ate a meal in complete darkness.

Before entering the restaurant we selected the style of cuisine we preferred: western, eastern, chefs choice which combines the two or vegetarian. As we entered the restaurant, we were guided into the darkness by our waiter, Neil, who is visually impaired. Once seated, we relied on our sense of touch to locate our utensils, water and each other. As each of the four courses were served, we had no idea what was in front of us. We talked through each bite. What are you tasting? What do you think of the texture? What is this crunchy stuff?

To conclude the experience, we returned to the light and we were showed photos of what each dish looked like and what components were in each.

Our experience at Dine in the Dark was unlike any other and I highly recommend it for any foodies and adventurers. Don’t be afraid of the dark.


dine in the dark

The group ready to dine in the dark!


dine dark

Outside the restaurant!

When in Thailand, the fish spa is a must!

By: Rose White

I’ve never seen anything like it before. There was even a cute little girl loving the fishes on her feet. If she can do this… Then anybody can!

I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I dived my feet right in. Immediately it tickled. I had my mouth open in laughter for the first 5 min. The experience is for only 15 minutes and costs 150 baht (approximately 5$ and change).

Unfortunately, the fish spa isn’t as popular in Bangkok and I had expected. I had to take two trains from my hotel to the location. This spa is located at a popular tourist destination called Asiatique. It reminds me of Pointe, Orlando off International drive.

The journey to the fishes was worth the time in travel. This was a fun and unique experience.


image (1)

Cute little girl loving the fishes on her feet!



Experiencing the fish spa!

Icon if you can!

By: Chad Cooper
Traveling in Bangkok certainly poses a number of challenges when it comes to iconography.  The symbolic representation of images for other objects or actions is a pretty common in most cities and countries. It creates a visual short hand to quickly communicate information.

Here in Bangkok the use of icons helped us to find everything from trains to taxis to restaurants.  However, searching for the restroom at a while detouring through a shopping center created more questions than answers.


Where are the……..restrooms?









I took a quick survey of my cohort members and the majority of them felt that none of these images was a accurate representation of using the restroom.  We followed the sign and made our way to a dead end in our path.  There was no restroom and assumed we simply misinterpreted the icons.  That is until one my my more observant peers saw the following hiding in plain sight.

What appeared to me to be a store front for a some futuristic postmodern international Abercrombie & Fitch, was in fact the ever elusive restroom we were seeking.  While traveling in Bangkok it became clear that one’s world view is not necessarily the view held by the rest of the world.  In the end we were a little wiser and pleasantly relieved.










Your Safety Is (Not) Guaranteed

By: Chad Cooper

Bangkok is a massive city and offers many means of getting from here to there.  These include elevated trains, subway, buses, taxis cabs, taxi motorbikes and tuk tuks

After an amazing dinner 61 stories high in the sky at Vertigo and Moon Bar our cohort decided to make a final late night stop at the Lebua Hotel where the movie “The Hangover Part II” was filmed.

All of this appeared to create a night that simply couldn’t be topped.  That was until my cohort member Yoshi and I climbed aboard a tuk tuk for a high speed trip back to our hotel.

We make the following video to document the safety features available when traveling by tuk tuk for all interested parties…..enjoy!