Success Story – State Street Corporation

Eileen, Public Funds

Eileen was a vice president for public funds at State Street Corporation, a leading global financial services company.
Eager to grow professionally, she wanted to raise her visibility within the organization and hone her leadership and communication skills.

The answer? Executive coaching from Cheever Communications.

The first step in the Cheever coaching process was talking with Eileen and members of her management team to get a clear sense of her role, strengths and challenges. Based on this feedback, Eileen and Cheever initially worked on clarifying Eileen’s goals, developing a coaching strategy and then identifying specific communications skills and techniques for further attention.

“We focused on maximizing my influencing and leadership skills, decision-making as well as presentation training and general communications skills,” said Eileen. “This included looking at the different ways men and women communicate. I learned, for instance, to get away from using qualifiers like ‘I think’ or ‘maybe we should’ and make stronger statements like ‘this is what we should do.’”

Putting this into action, the Cheever consultant worked with Eileen to prepare for and rehearse a presentation she had to give to a regular roundtable discussion with senior management. “We strategized on the best way to approach the presentation and to express my views – to be assertive and demonstrate my commitment to my positions,” noted Eileen.

One specific area of focus was learning how to manage and tolerate stress, as well as effective behaviors for communicating during crisis situations. “In these high-stress situations, it’s important that the executive is perceived as in charge and not overwhelmed,” added Eileen. “I learned how to use words, body language, pace and demeanor to create calmness, instill confidence and convey that I was energized and prepared to address the issue.”

Over the course of Eileen’s coaching, it became clear that she had a real aptitude in the area of relationship management – which was not fully being utilized in her position in the public funds sector. “The question was whether I could find the right career opportunity within State Street or would have to leave the organization to do that,” said Eileen.

As a result of the executive coaching, Eileen’s leadership skills and visibility grew within the organization. In addition to being appointed chair of State Street’s United Way campaign, she ultimately received five internal job offers, in addition to her outside opportunities.

Today, Eileen is a senior vice president in State Street’s Global Relationship Management area. It is exactly the kind of high-profile position she wanted in an area that matches her skills and interests – and State Street retained and benefits from the skills of a talented executive – a true win-win situation.