Doris Friedl was born in Austria and is a certified systemic coach with over 25 years of experience in human resources and operations management. She has successfully worked with several international and fast-growing companies across a wide range of industries. 

Doris loves to explore new worlds that extend beyond unfamiliar European terrains. She speaks five languages (German, Fench, Spanish, English & Dutch) and has lived in Brussels, Barcelona and now Berlin. Besides a preference for metropolises starting with the letter “B”, what excites her the most is everything “new.” New experiences and opportunities like traveling and living in foreign countries, discovering foreign perspectives and cultures and new job opportunities.  

As digitalization increases, job markets are changing rapidly, giving way to new forms of organization and allowing new opportunities for collaboration to emerge. Appreciation and respectful cooperation go hand in hand with the increasing need for self-organization, flexible working hours and a work model that’s based on trust. Companies must adapt to this and learn to hand over more responsibility. As a successful business coach, Doris supports companies in this transformation process. 

This includes inspiring and strengthening managers, improving corporate culture and internal communication, as well as process analysis and optimization in an intercultural environment. Her enthusiasm for these topics, along with her professional and life experiences, fuels her drive for more successful business coaching. In this interview, she explains more about her coaching methods, personal views and provides insights into her daily coaching routine. 

CoachHub: Why did you decide to become a coach? 

So far in my professional career, I have worked in many vibrant, fast-paced companies with different corporate cultures. So I’ve experienced the difficulties and challenges of transformation first-hand. The desire to enable a different kind of leadership and a different way of working with people grew over the years. Supporting employees in their potential development represents a win-win situation for both the coachee and the companies themselves. With this knowledge, I decided to train as a certified coach on a part-time basis. As a systemic coach, the ability of self-reflection is a basic requirement, as you need to be able to shape your environment according to your own needs, values and by setting your own goals.

CoachHub: What methods and coaching techniques do you use? 

As a certified, systemic-integrative coach, I use numerous methods and coaching techniques that are specifically tailored to the needs of my coachees, in order to achieve the desired behavioral change naturally and sustainably. By doing so, I follow a systemic constructivist approach, the client-centered approach developed by Carl Rogers and the hypnotherapeutic approach developed by Milton H. Erickson. Additionally, I draw on the insights of cognitive behavioral therapy, especially that of Albert Ellis’ Rational-Emotive Therapy (RET). 

Some coaching practice techniques that have proven to be particularly effective are “The Enneagram: Communication Model” and “Inner Team” devised by Friedemann Schulz von Thun. They offer the chance to achieve more self-knowledge, to better apply one’s own potential and to help you grow personally.

On the other hand, the model of nonviolent communication devised by Marshall B. Rosenberg makes it possible to deal with each other in a way that the flow of communication leads to more trust and joy in life. Therefore, it’s not only helpful in everyday life, but also in personal and professional conflict resolution. 

CoachHub: What is your personal coaching trademark? What particularly distinguishes your coaching? 

I attach great importance to clear and honest communication, both as a coach and in my private life. I am particularly convinced of the effectiveness of nonviolent Communication, which is why I passionately try to integrate it into my everyday life in the best possible way. 

According to Rosenberg’s model, empathy is a basic prerequisite for successful communication. Since I have experience in organizational development and people management, but have also experienced many changes myself (such as moving to different countries, learning new languages and cultures, working in a wide variety of industries and company sizes from start-ups to the creative scene), I am very good at empathizing with my coachees and listening empathically. Also, my coachees can look forward to not only an open ear, but also to my Austrian sense of humor. 😉  

CoachHub: What is your personal coaching approach?

I aim to inspire and motivate people with energy and appreciation. In doing so, I see it as my mission to help create a supportive work environment that enables both a fulfilling professional and personal life. My greatest strengths lie in empathic listening as well as solution-oriented and networked thinking. I recognize structures and manage to inspire people to lead a fulfilling life professionally and privately. As a passionate networker, it helps me to build and deepen contacts and trust. 

CoachHub: What is a good exercise from your coaching that you also use frequently in your everyday life? 

It’s important to pause and celebrate successes everyday. It’s not just about the big, obvious things, but also about small successes. The best way to do this is to thank yourself in a warm and appreciative manner for your success. By consciously pausing and giving thanks, we can leave the hamster wheel and become more mindful and allow ourselves to take a breath. Thus, the things we take for granted become something special and we can regain more energy. This is a very important exercise, especially in today’s very fast-paced life.

CoachHub: What do you think makes a good coach?

I don’t know if there’s such a thing as a good coach, but there is a suitable one. Of course, it is important that the right coach also knows the ups and downs of the coachee and works continuously on his or her development. Coaches should have core competencies that include open communication, empathy, curiosity, creativity and systemic thinking. By mastering these skills, the coach has a professional attitude and can support the coachee to go his or her own way.

CoachHub: What do you think are the essential skills for being a good leader today? 

Managers usually want self-organized and motivated employees. To achieve this, the environment should be based on trust. Leaders need to learn to let go and hand over responsibilities so their employees can try new things and take responsibility. 

In order to create a trusting relationship, a conducive attitude is required on the part of both the employee and the manager. Competencies such as active listening, clear and complete communication (such as the meaningfulness of the activity) are particularly important, as is the promotion of collaboration and of course, the willingness for self-reflection and further development. The latter applies both to oneself and to team members. In my opinion, a good manager acts as a mentor at eye level and ideally will involve their team in the decision-making processes. 

CoachHub: How can coaching help overcome blockages?

In coaching, experiences and the resulting patterns of thought and action are examined more closely and above all, made visible. Subsequently, alternative ways of thinking and convictions are worked out in order to be able to try out new actions. The new action is mostly small and should slowly move them out of their comfort zone. Since these new patterns of thinking and acting come from the coachee themselves, it is easier to try out new things than if someone in a classic counseling session tells you what to do.

CoachHub: Based on your experience, how do you recognize that a coaching session is successful? 

When we see new paths open up, as well as achieving the goals we set at the beginning of the coaching sessions. Most importantly, when the coachee leaves the appointment with a better feeling.

CoachHub: Why did you decide to work with CoachHub? 

Even before Covid-19, I was already coaching online. On the one hand, because it is flexible and on the other hand, because I am convinced that a personal, trusting framework is also possible remotely. CoachHub is a very professional platform and gives me the opportunity to work in a larger radius and in a wide variety of industries and companies. The acquisition process for me as a coach is completely eliminated, so I can focus entirely on my work. I also find the exercises for coachees offered by CoachHub to be very helpful and that coachees are retaining and applying the information they learned from each session. Overall, I find the collaboration with CoachHub as a coach very professional and appreciative.

CoachHub: What trends do you currently see in the coaching sector? 

Coaching is becoming more and more important due to fast-paced environments, home office and increased demands from employers, so people need the opportunity to reflect. They need time to see what their needs are and take them into account,, as well as to work on soft skills such as resilience ( i.e. better processing and dealing with stress and crises). Also important to employers, is the inclusion of everyone’s personal needs as it’s becoming increasingly important. People are increasingly focusing on the meaning of their professional activities. For employee retention, it’s important to be able to offer further development, especially to the younger generations. 

 CoachHub: Do you have anything else you would like to add to conclude the interview? 

We live in a world that is changing rapidly and because of these circumstances, everyone should reflect and ask themselves, “To what extent am I willing to go along with changes?” Employees should learn to take responsibility for themselves, while management should focus on involving people with small and large change processes. This ensures economic success and creates a healthy, motivated, and knowledgeable staff that stays with the company for the long term.