career transitioner/ restarter
Director & Executive Leadership Coach
(In her 40's)
Her story (as shared by her nominator)
Just before turning 45, after two decades in senior roles in the corporate world and her boys aged 3yo and 4yo, Katia decided to reinvent herself to support women empowerment. One day, she met the VP of Tabitha Foundation. While talking with her, she was inspired by her passion and impressed by the results Tabitha had delivered in helping underprivileged Cambodian women. She thought it was the opportunity to give back she’d been looking for since her relocation the year before.
Months later, she engaged as a volunteer with PrimeTime, an association on a mission to support women to reach their highest potential. It was there that she found the courage to embark on a journey to become a certified professional coach; something she had done during her corporate time but considered more as a hobby rather than a second career.
Specialised in Leadership Development & Transitions, she blends her extensive management background with her coaching skills. Today, with more than 1,000 coaching hours under her belt, she gets great satisfaction from working mainly with female professionals and supporting them to move to the next level in their career. When not wearing the coach hat she keeps volunteering for PrimeTime.
Since her thirties, she has been a fierce supporter of women empowerment. She walks the talk, an empowered woman herself, advocating others to find their voice. Until August last year, her passion for giving was not limited to one organisation. Even when she was the President of Tabitha Foundation, an organisation that helps Cambodians lift themselves up from poverty, she run for a 2-year term to become the President of PrimeTime - another female oriented association – while developing her coaching practice amidst a global pandemic and raising two kids 10,200 km far from her family and supporting network.
In her words:
Personally, I am proud of being able to start a family after turning 40yo and being blessed with two energetic and active boys who are true global citizens. Professionally, I am proud of the ability to make an impact on my clients' life with my new job, whether it is supporting them to land a new job after being retrenched or moving to the next level in their profession after having struggled or being stuck for a while. The opportunity to give back and have a broader impact beyond myself, my family and my close community is one of my greatest and most meaningful achievements. And it makes me very happy.
Biggest challenge thus far
Yes, I am proud of having overcome and managed my limiting belief --- that if you are successful in the corporate space, it is difficult to thrive in a smaller entrepreneurial environment. Moving from that idea (or bias), so many friends and peers have discouraged me to embark on my coaching studies, to start my second career and later to set up my own business. Instead, they were advising me to enjoy what I had achieved with my family (when nobody was expecting me to become a mum at that age after focusing on my career for so many years) and what I had previously accomplished in my corporate life.
what judges say
Strong social impact, managing 2 kids in 40s and pushing hard on her career journey!