Kerrie Phipps coaches leaders and entrepreneurs, writes books and supports others on their journeys through life.

What’s your story?
Growing up on a farm in Australia, I knew that people were always welcome; that if we met someone on the side of the road, they’d most likely be coming home for dinner. School life wasn’t so friendly, and I quickly learned that it really matters to make people feel welcome and included. I began my working life (after childhood farm work) in a dental surgery, where I learned the value of using and remembering people’s names, and the difference it makes to extend a hand of comfort and empathy when someone’s in a vulnerable, uncomfortable or even painful moment. I went on to work in other customer service roles in retail and banking, then youth and community work with regional churches and schools. After my second trip to Thailand volunteering (and Singapore for R&R on the way home) I picked up a virus that hit me hard, and mixed with burnout that was creeping in, eventually I was unable to work. After a very quiet (incapacitated) season I came across the right help, and soon after a new career. I trained as a coach in 2004 and became accredited in 2005. Since then I’ve been coaching leaders and entrepreneurs to think better, make the best decisions and the best connections with others. Writing for magazines led to writing books, and so many conversations built my business and supported many others. My latest book (which is the first in the series) is called DO Talk To Strangers: How To Connect With Anyone, Anywhere. It’s the message I live. I love meeting people and the adventures that are possible as a result. I’m passionate about connecting people, making great things happen, and increasing positivity in the world.

What excites you most about your industry?
The collective impact of thousands of coaching/speaking professionals who inspire people to think more clearly, creatively and collaboratively, is astounding. We are empowering each other and countless more to make the world a brighter, sustainable, compassionate and proactive global community.

What’s your connection to Asia?
I’m a close neighbour. I’m based in Australia and often visit Singapore, the Philippines and other Asian countries. While it might seem a long flight (8 hours from Sydney) it’s less time-consuming than many road trips I’ve done in Australia of 10 – 15 hours one way! I keep coming back, because I love the people, the opportunity to learn, and I keep being asked back – especially since writing a book that’s particularly relevant to a rapidly changing region, to people who are driven to make a positive difference in the world.

Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore. I learn so much everyday, I’m inspired by what I hear and see. Every street is so interesting, creative and full of people with extraordinary stories and ideas. Business people encourage one another and share resources and experiences. There’s a wonderful vibe of beauty, innovation and growth.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
“When you’re nervous, you’re thinking about yourself.” This observation enabled me to become more self-aware and let go of the apprehension of meeting new people, public speaking and other interactions. Being focused on serving others is liberating!

Who inspires you?
People who speak multiple languages, people who overcome adversity and have a good attitude, my grandparents (all 4 lived well, beyond 95 years of age), my parents, my husband and my son!

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
That the installation hanging in Marina Bay Sands Hotel Tower 1 Atrium is made up of platonic solids (cubes, octahedrons, tetrahedrons etc). I didn’t really appreciate that until my 16 year old son pointed it out to me, in awe. (I think I’m in awe of him too.) It’s not a tangle of thin rods – it’s a mathematical marvel of shapes. Next time you’re in there, look up!

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
Be more curious. Ask for more information and advice. It’s better to ask and learn.

How do you unwind?
In water – pools, beaches, tubs of any size, and floatation tanks! Or simply taking a walk or writing my thoughts out.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Balesin Island, Philippines. It’s a private member-only island (AND their guests, thankfully) with 7 themed villages from around the world. A drive around is a global day trip of unique beach resorts from Asia to Greece and Italy – and it’s built for relaxation! There’s also a stunning wellness centre with rooftop thalassopools (think seawater jacuzzi’s – perfect for floating in and coming up with brilliant ideas.

Everyone in business should read this book:
DO Talk To Strangers: How To Connect With Anyone, Anywhere. (I’m still learning from it and I wrote it! Connecting with people is how businesses grow!) I have so many useful books on my shelf, from neuroscience books like ‘You Are Not Your Brain’ by Dr Jeffrey Schwartz and leadership books by John Maxwell and Brian Tracy. Leaders are readers.

Shameless plug for your business:
‘Connecting with Confidence’ is the workshop I’ve created for teams to collaborate courageously and effectively and reach out to clients with confident communication. I also work with leaders individually to increase their clarity and confidence in their leadership and astound themselves with their rapid, sustainable, personal growth. Every leader is unique and is the expert in their world. I simply ask the right questions and help the leader hear themselves think their best thoughts, and catch them doing well (they forget to learn from their strengths and wins) and support them to step forward with the brave decisions that they make.

How can people connect with you?
By sending a personal note! (always introduce yourself on Linkedin or Facebook as you send an invitation to connect) https://www.linkedin.com/in/kerriephipps/
https://www.facebook.com/KerriePhipps personal profile
https://www.facebook.com/KerriePhipps1/ public page
www.kerriephipps.com/contact to send me an email
Instagram @kerriephipps

Twitter handle?
@kerriephipps

This interview was part of the Callum Connect’s column found on The Asian Entrepreneur:

CallumConnectsCallum Laing invests and buys small businesses in a range of industries around Asia. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is the founder & owner of Fitness-Buffet a company delivering employee wellness solutions in 12 countries. He is a Director of, amongst others, Key Person of Influence. A 40 week training program for business owners and executives.

Take the ‘Key Person of Influence’ scorecard <http://www.keypersonofinfluence.com/scorecard/>

Connect with Callum here:
twitter.com/laingcallum
linkedin.com/in/callumlaing
Get his free ‘Asia Snapshot’ report from www.callumlaing.com

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