the who

Who are you?

I saw The Who in Toronto last week, one of my favourite bands. I enjoy seeing them live and this time was no exception. During their iconic song “Who Are You”, it occurred to me just how deeply this song resonates with my life and career.

I woke up in a Soho doorway
A policeman knew my name
He said, “You can go sleep at home tonight
If you can get up and walk away

These lines strike a chord in me. As a young man, I worked as a London Bobby. Knowing the neighbourhood and the people who lived and worked there was part of the job. I’ve been that policeman giving someone the chance to go home and sleep it off. Later, I worked for Scotland Yard, then moved to Canada to join the RCMP.

I stretched back and I hiccupped
And looked back on my busy day
Eleven hours in the tin pan
God, there’s got to be another way

Although in this verse The Who‘s Pete Townshend is talking about a day spent haggling with a New York record company executive over royalties, we’ve all had endless days at work wondering if there wasn’t some other, better way to make a living. Many of my clients over the years have begun looking for new jobs to get out of those old ruts. These lines remind me of my own life: After years of police work on two continents, in 1993 my career path took a twist and I founded So, when my clients express that desire to change direction or move forward along their path, I’ve been there and taken that kind of leap myself. I’m passionate about facilitating positive change for my clients.

Who are you?
(Who are you? Who, who, who, who?)

Knowing who you are is such an important start to making life-altering decisions such as a new career, a new job, or a move to a new city or country. My own professional path from young policeman to experienced, multi-credentialed Executive Coach has been a long and interesting journey that all began with asking myself the same question Townshend asks in the chorus, “Who are you?”  When I could identify who I was as a person, as a professional, it became easier to see where I wanted to go next. It also became easier to tell others who I was and where I was headed.

Come on tell me, who are you?
(Who are you? Who, who, who, who?)
I really wanna know
(Who are you? Who, who, who, who?)

Coaching clients, helping them sift through their thoughts, wants, needs, expectations, and dreams, I help them find the words to describe themselves in a way that catches the attention of their listeners. Through thought and practice, they refine their story, distill their values, experiences, skills, and beliefs into a Personal Brand they can use to sell themselves to hiring influencers. When they have completed the work of setting goals, creating a personal brand, and can confidently introduce their new-minted understanding of themselves, my clients are ready to stand up and stand out.

Tell me, tell me who are you?
(Who are you? Who, who, who, who?)

Can you tell me who are you? Can you tell me why I should hire you? What makes you the perfect fit for the position you want? If you can stand up and sing out, great! You’re ready to search for the next step in your career journey. If not? I’d love to help you discover the answer for yourself.

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