Friday Interview: Maite Baron
This week, I had the pleasure of intervewing Maite Baron. Known as ‘The Corporate Escape Coach™’, Maite is a renowned author and entrepreneur. Her company, The Corporate Escape, specialised in consultancy and leadership training and development, has helped hundreds of companies, including Nestlé and LG Electronics.
Tell us a little bit about the business you run.
I set up The Corporate Escape up in 2012 because after 14 years in the coaching business I was tired of seeing so many professionals trapped by decisions they had made often decades ago, following the same path even though they knew it was no longer right, simply because they didn’t know what else to do. They were disillusioned, frustrated, burned out and confused.
The Corporate Escape releases them from those old choices and helps them reignite their passion for life by helping them see their professional life from different perspectives, they gain clarity, a new understanding of their own value, and how they can leverage their talents, knowledge and expertise to create new options for themselves, all captured in a step-by step plan that makes their new vision possible, ultimately reinventing themselves as New Entrepreneurs.
Later this year I’ll be launching a new initiative that helps professionals design every dimension of their lives, so that they achieve not just greater professional success, but also real balance and harmony between work and other areas of their life.
Why did you make the move from fashion to business coaching?
I’ve always been passionate about helping people live happier lives by achieving their full potential. And after nearly 15 years in fashion, I came to see that clothes define how you look on the ‘outside’, but no matter how expensive, they can’t make you beautiful if you don’t feel happy in your own skin. Coaching on the other hand, brings out the beauty that’s on the ‘inside’, and I decided that was more important to me.
And because work makes so many people unhappy, showing ambitious professionals how to become ‘leaders of their own lives’ by following their heart and true life purpose became my speciality.
Are there any must have apps/tools/websites you would recommend to new entrepreneurs?
I’m not a big fan of technology and I try to avoid as much distractions as possible. To me it’s just a tool. So I keep it simple and only use apps that are easy to use and which make me more productive, like Dropbox, Teamwork, Skype and Instant Teleseminar, for example.
What is a typical work day for you like?
Depending on my mood, I start with a walk by the river or along the high street, before having a morning meeting with my partner in an independent café. Then it’s back to the office for my first coaching session of the day. This could be face-to-face, via Skype or a video conference with an international client.
Using technology is crucial for my business as I love working with international clients and travelling, this keeps me open to new thoughts and different perspectives, so I’m constantly trying different business models to make sure my working life keeps energising me as well as my clients.
So each day has a different flow, particularly if I’m doing intensive full ‘VIP days’ in person or virtually, as I prefer to work one-to-one or small groups intensively. Also, I dedicate daily time working on my second book, which I’m halfway through, writing blogs and doing other creative work. The rest of the time is filled with marketing, social media and making new connections.
Is there anyone you look up to in terms of work ethos?
Artists and creatives inspire me because I’m creative myself. I don’t like stereotypical or corporate thinking. I keep distractions like reading the news to a minimum. I prefer to be inspired by life experiences and real interactions with people from diverse backgrounds, industries and perceptions.
Facebook: Maite Baron
Facebook The Corporate Escape: The Corporate Escape
LinkedIn: Maite Baron
Maite is one of the mentors at the Migrant Business Accelerator.
If you wish to help migrants become entrepreneurs and change their lives for the better, get in touch with This Foreigner Can Social Enterprise.