Spotlight Series: Meet Brand Strategist and Career Strategy Coach Michelle de Alba

1. Tell us a bit about yourself

I am a Brand Strategist and Career Strategy Coach with over 20 years of experience in Sales and Marketing with 10 of those last years spent at the Executive Leadership Level. I have worked for billion-dollar companies where I’ve had the opportunity to attain the ‘best in class’ training in sales, leadership, coaching and developing people. My experience in leadership is directly related to employee performance and human resource management, developing individuals in their current and for future roles, as well as extensive experience in the entire recruiting and hiring process.

I started my business in September 2017 and really kicked off the career coaching side of the business a year later in November 2018 when I made the final decision to leave the corporate world. My decision was made because I was at a place where I felt I couldn’t effect change or my hands felt tied where I could no longer make a difference in my team's lives professionally. I was working 70+ hours a week and traveling over 60k miles a year domestically and putting more profit in the company’s pocketbook rather than my own. It was my straw that broke the camel’s back and I decided it was time to have more of the decision making process to impact the people around me. I absolutely love what I do each and every day. If I put over 70 hours in my work week, it’s because it is my choice to do so. I am an empty nester of two adult college age children, Meghan 21 and Michael 20. And I newly married the man of my dreams this past October 2019, Benjamin de Alba.

He is the reason I went the career coaching direction. From the day we met in Cozumel, Mexico in July 2017, he believed in me and ingrained in my head that coaching was my calling. In addition, we met on an island where he is an IDC Staff Scuba Dive Instructor. I knew my life was going to change in more ways than one when I met him. I knew I needed to create an opportunity and business so I could work virtually from anywhere in the world, so he could be in the ocean every day. We moved to our first home in Miami Beach, FL. Benjamin moved from Cozumel and I came from Houston, Texas

2. What was your first job and how did you get it?

My first "real" job was at a bank called Barnett Bank in Orlando, FL where I was attending college. I was worried about financing my college and learned that if I worked at a financial institution, they would pay for your degree if you get a relevant degree, e.g. business with 100% reimbursement if you get A’s in these classes. I started out as a teller in the era when selling and cross-selling started in banking. This is where I learned I was a salesperson blowing out all the competition. I ranked in the top percentile in sales month over month and year over year. I was promoted to a role in the customer service side where I assisted clients with their personal and businesses banking needs. This absolutely shaped my future and the leadership team was instrumental in my success and instilling company core values in me.

3. How did you decide and get to your career today?

The role that changed my career path was the day that I transitioned from pharmaceutical sales to commercial construction manufacturer sales. I went to work for a globally recognized European based company where their culture was to “develop within”. I had amazing leaders and mentors who held my hand every step of the way coaching and developing me. This is where I learned directly from my leaders who modeled strong leadership and coaching skills. Hilti invested in their leaders and provided me with top quality leadership training. They are what made me successful and given me the ability to have my own career strategy coaching business. I also was very fortunate again to have the support of my manager’s and have my MBA graduate degree fully paid for by Hilti.

4. What advice would you have given your younger self? Or what is the best career advice you have ever received?

My younger self would say don’t change a thing. Keep doing what you are doing. You are creating a future for yourself! Best career advice was the coaching session I had with Christy Graybill when she helped me at a crossroad when I didn’t know whether I should steer towards operations or the sales side of the business. Without telling me what to do, she coached me through the process of deciding on my own by using powerful questions. That coaching session led me to get my MBA, a huge promotion and relocate to Houston, Texas. I ultimately doubled my income in just a few years.

5. In 5 years, where do you hope to be professionally and personally?

In 5 years, my job search process will be 100% digitized across 6 workshops. I plan to be an award-winning certified resume writer and be nationally recognized as a top Career Coach launching a career speaking on stage.

Stay connected with Michelle!



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