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Coaching Real Leaders

Author: Harvard Business Review / Muriel Wilkins

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We all want to get to the next level of our career, but so many of us get stuck. Longtime leadership coach Muriel Wilkins takes you inside real-life leadership coaching sessions with high performers working to overcome professional challenges and grow as leaders. Listen in on real conversations and leave with new insights and practical guidance for your own career.

The views expressed on this podcast are those of its hosts, guests, and callers, and not those of Harvard Business Review.
62 Episodes
She’s experienced burnout in more than one past role. Now, after taking some time away from work, she’s gearing up to start a new position and she wants to avoid making the same mistakes. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches her toward uncovering the root of her burnout and realizing how she can change the work habits that have caused it in the past.
He’s come up the ranks and built his career working in the field, and now wants to transition to the corporate side of his company. But he’s struggling to convince senior colleagues to permanently place him in such a role. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches him through defining his value proposition and influencing key decision-makers to achieve his career goals.
She’s an experienced leader who has always been highly ambitious and motivated to achieve impressive results. But now as she enters mid-life, she’s thinking about the next phase of her career and how to find a balance between striving and fulfillment. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches her through her concerns about aging in the workforce, finding the right challenges, and planning for her future.
She has moved up in her organization quickly and often feels like she’s playing catch up. But she also has gotten positive feedback from senior executives that she’s performing well. Now, as her company grows and the advancement opportunities narrow, she wants to be strategic about how to get to the next level of leadership. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches this leader to think through how she needs to adapt to move forward.
He’s a leader with a passion for going the extra mile and achieving results. But he’s struggling with how long he can sustain the level of effort and time required to meet the demands of his new role. Host Muriel Wilkins helps this leader unpack what drives his work habits, redefine how he demonstrates his value, and align his workload with his overall goals.
She held many positions all over the world before landing her dream leadership role. But then she took on a different position at her company to be closer to where she wanted to live permanently. Now she’s missing her previous role and hopes to return to it, but is unsure how to make it happen since the company needs her where she is. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches her through understanding how to articulate her career goals and navigate what’s next.
Coming Soon: Season 7

Coming Soon: Season 7


Executive coach Muriel Wilkins is back March 11 with a new season of the podcast that takes you behind the scenes of real life executive coaching conversations. On this season of Coaching Real Leaders, you’ll listen in on coaching sessions with leaders working through pressing career challenges like: How can I craft my next role to avoid burnout? Should I return to the C-suite? How can I find a new role that makes use of my strengths and brings me happiness? Can I adjust my workload while still making an impact? Listen in, learn with them, and be sure to subscribe so you never miss an episode.
She’s grown her entire career at one company, but now she’s in a new leadership role and she recently felt blindsided by negative feedback from her team. She’s struggling to process the feedback and respond. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches her through how she can move forward with her team.
She’s a high-achiever who has defined herself through her achievements and promotions. But she’s hit some bumps in her career and she’s feeling less engaged in her work. Now she’s questioning the leadership track she’s on. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches her through defining what success looks like for her moving forward.
He took a less traditional career path to college and law school. Now he’s successful as a lawyer, despite several job pivots. But he is still missing meaning and connection in his work. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches this leader through defining his purpose and how that can translate to his work.
He’s a leader with a growing team, and he enjoys people management. But he’s struggling to  influence those outside of his team and build trust with stakeholders. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches him through developing some of the skills he needs to gain stakeholder alignment while driving for results.
She’s taken a number of chances in her career and made some big pivots. Now, she’s been assigned to a senior role on an interim basis, but she’s not sure whether she should try to make the role permanent. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches her through the decision-making process to better understand what’s holding her back and the future she envisions for herself.
He’s always believed in hard work and is extremely ambitious. But he’s received feedback that sometimes the way he communicates is too direct, and he wants to work on his delivery. Host Muriel Wilkins helps him understand what might be holding him back and coaches him through how he can improve his approach.
Coming Soon: Season 6

Coming Soon: Season 6


Executive coach Muriel Wilkins is back September 18 with an all new season of the podcast that takes you behind the scenes of real life executive coaching conversations. This season, first-time managers, mid-level leaders, and executives work through some of their most pressing career challenges. You’ll hear conversations around questions like: How do I know if I should make my interim role permanent? Have I taken my career as far as it will go? How do I build more effective relationships with my peers and those above me? Muriel helps each leader discover unexpected insights about themselves and actionable steps they can take to move forward. Listen in and learn with them.
On this special bonus episode, host Muriel Wilkins and Think Fast, Talk Smart host Matt Abrahams discuss strategies for creating a strong physical presence that can be felt by those around you . By understanding and controlling your presence, you can communicate more effectively, lead more authentically, and have a greater impact on your organization. Follow the Think Fast, Talk Smart podcast on your favorite podcast app. Stay tuned for a new season of Coaching Real Leaders this fall!
Candor and compassion at work are more important (and more difficult to cultivate) than ever. On this episode, host Muriel Wilkins joins the Radical Candor podcast to take questions from listeners and discuss how to lead in a hybrid environment. Look for Radical Candor in your favorite podcast app. And keep an eye out for the new season of Coaching Real Leaders, coming this fall!
He experienced early success and a fast promotion at his organization, but then things started to shift. Now, there have been leadership changes, and his scope of responsibilities has changed, making him feel like his career is backsliding. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches him through how he can reframe the situation and prioritize what he wants from his career going forward.
She loves the work she does and has effectively managed her career to gain increased responsibility over time. She’s recently started managing managers for the first time and is struggling to find the right pace to help her organization reach long-term strategic goals, amid some short-term uncertainty. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches her through setting goals and timelines for the long term.
He’s a mission driven leader who has always found roles where he can help others. He was brought in at a high level at a new organization, but he’s feeling tension and conflict with the organization’s founder. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches him through how to manage himself in this negative work dynamic.
She’s found a career path she truly enjoys, in part because of her ability to take risks and try new things. Now, as her team is reorganized, she has the opportunity to design her next leadership position, but she’s not sure what she needs and wants to be successful. Host Muriel Wilkins coaches her through reframing what may be holding her back and identifying the priorities she wants to focus on going forward.
Comments (5)


Every single time that I listen to your podcast, I wonder why you have chosen this awful anxious music for the show😫😫😫😫😫😫😫😫

May 25th


Very insightful and thought provoking. Good podcast

May 11th

malutty malu


Feb 5th

Audra Martin

Great show, insightful coach. This guest is 100% me. Thanks for the free coaching session.

Oct 21st


Thanks for thesse rich interviews! That’s really helpful for everyone who looks for getting to the next level of the career. 🙂

May 17th