Marisa Zalabak, Founder, Open Channel Culture; Psychologist, Adaptive Leadership Coach

Marisa Zalabak, Founder, Open Channel Culture; Psychologist, Adaptive Leadership Coach

  • I began by focusing on creating programs and coaching models for developing human skills which are required in the corporate world, education, and nonprofits alike.

 

Podcast

Overview

Marisa is the founder of Open Channel Culture, TEDx & Keynote Speaker, Author, Educational Psychologist, Social-Emotional-Creative Intelligence Specialist, Equity Advisor, and AI Ethicist. She partners with leaders and teams, supporting organizations and businesses by providing essential services to improve, and sustain positive organizational culture; reconnecting purpose and values to action.

00:38- About Open Channel Culture

  • I began by focusing on creating programs and coaching models for developing human skills which are required in the corporate world, education, and nonprofits alike.
  • So, I began with emotional, social, and creative intelligence, and then it expanded from there.
  • I also focus on organizational culture that can be healthy, productive, and has emotional, social, and creative intelligence.

03:08- How do you define adaptive leadership?

  • Heifetz had four pillars of adaptive leadership. And my take had an additional two.
  • Emotional intelligence is the first one, and they include social intelligence in that. The second is organizational justice which has been a huge part of my work over the years.
  • The third element that they talk about is personal development. And the fourth is applied character. And what I mean by applied characters is that we don’t need the same character strengths for every single situation.
  • The two I added are AI ethics and regenerative design. I became quite involved in artificial intelligence and the ethics of artificial intelligence. The regenerative design has to do with sustainability.

06:18- View on the ethics of AI

  • I’m co-chair of the AI ethics education committee with IEEE, which is a huge engineering organization. I have been invited in as a psychologist.
  • Most engineers have had very minimal training in what is referred to as AI ethics. It is beginning to change, which is lovely.
  • We very often in the design and production of things and mobilization get lost in “Oh, we can do this”. But should we do it?
  • We, humans, have on average 187 cognitive biases, on top of that, those are charged with emotional charges. So, a lot of questions arise around the ethics of AI.

09:25- Why are people now seeking professional intervention and willing to pay for it?

  • Professions are changing, geographic locations are changing. People are more isolated socially. They don’t belong to communities where they’re with people daily.
  • Sometimes they’re only digitally with people. And so, people I think, are seeking out connection, seeking out opportunities for reflection, that one would have if you were immersed.
  • I also think that it’s also an industry boom, people decided coaching is the new profession, and it became really popular.

14:12-How does culture impact coaching? And some learnings that you bring to your coaching?

  • I bring to my coaching, compassion, generosity, love, discernment, and curiosity. I’m able to see lenses in people that are very often ignored, that are often not seen.
  • Curiosity was interesting. I became an educational psychologist because I was more interested in learning why people learn than what they learn.
  • Culture impacts coaching on every level, both actually in an organizational context where it’s the culture of the organization, but also the culture of how and where one grew up.
  • When it comes to culture, Curiosity serves me best to find out, not how they are like me, but how they are themselves, what they believe are the aspects they bring in, that have been formed, and how they see the world.

17:55- Areas the young leaders need to be coached in?

  • Emotional awareness is essential for young leaders
  • While the pandemic was an incredibly difficult two years, very early on we recognized the potential devastation that was about to happen and used our skills in business and technology to move all of our programs to online delivery.
  • During the pandemic as schools would open, the appetite for extracurricular activities was three times as high as normal, because people were starved for it. But as the pandemic went on longer, it built more fear and distrust into people’s lives. So, we’re coming out of it much slower.
  • For the first 6 months post-pandemic, people were not confident but now we have reached pre-pandemic levels of engagement and will be seeing greater levels of participation.
  • People realized that they need to do what they are passionate about. We saw things like the great resignation, where people change jobs.

24:23- 3 lessons you want viewers and listeners to take away from your learnings

  • I always think of lessons as invitations. First, my invitation is to become more self-aware. Because I think that allows us to have self-compassion and compassion for others.
  • I think the second invitation is learning how versus learning to ask how versus the what. Because we’re so looking for solutions right away that we’re not necessarily looking at the question.
  • And I think the third is thinking about, not just what you want to gain, but what you want to leave behind you.

RESOURCES:

You can connect with Marisa Zalabak- LinkedIn

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Profile

  • Marisa is the founder of Open Channel Culture, TEDx & Keynote Speaker, Author, Educational Psychologist, Social-Emotional-Creative Intelligence Specialist, Equity Advisor, and AI Ethicist.
  • She partners with leaders and teams, supporting organizations and businesses by providing essential services to improve, and sustain positive organizational culture; reconnecting purpose and values to action.

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