A Message from Michelle
Welcome. If you are drawn to this website, you are most likely an ambitious woman seeking professional success and satisfaction that fits well into your life. I get that – because those are my priorities too.
When I reflect on my own career path over the last 20 years, with its many twists and turns, off-ramps and re-launches, I realize that I have truly come full circle and am doing the work I was meant to do. My three long-time passions of psychology, business and women’s issues have converged into a dream profession for me, and my work truly doesn’t feel like work. But it took some effort to get here…
When I started my career in corporate banking back in 1990, I loved the feeling of building a career of my own. I really did buy into the notion of the day: “we can have it all” and at the same time. I also began to notice that there were very few women at the top. It seemed that for women to succeed back then, we were expected to conform to a male business model – to be “men in skirts” (remember those shoulder pads and bow ties??). Even at this young age, I become very interested in women’s issues in the workplace.
I spent the next 12 years in financial services and software marketing, and began the gradual transformation from childless worker to mom of three. After several wonderful and flexible work arrangements, I had my youngest son and made the hard but satisfying choice to off-ramp and be home with my kids for a few years. Relinquishing that business card and my professional identity was not easy! I know many women who have struggled with this and many others who have grappled with the choice to stay.
When it was time for me to return to paid work, I was pulled towards coaching, particularly serving women similar to me. I love understanding what makes a client tick, what her interests and passions are, and helping her to clarify and achieve her own definition of success.
For me, this is what it feels like to be “on purpose” and doing work that is meaningful and aligned with what I care about. I know that I am very fortunate to feel this way about my career choices and I am committed to helping other women experience this fulfillment in their own lives.
About Michelle’s Work
Michelle Friedman, CPCC is a professional development coach, organizational consultant, trainer and speaker serving ambitious women at mid-career and the companies that employ them. She is the Founder of Advancing Women’s Careers, LLC, a coaching and consulting firm based outside of NYC.
Her passion is empowering women to shine in their professional lives while leading a balanced life outside of the office. She also guides professional women back into the workforce after pauses in their career path. Additionally, Michelle consults to progressive employers committed to attracting, retaining and advancing their female talent. Her clients are located in the U.S., Canada and Asia.
Michelle’s special areas of focus include leadership development, effective time management, goal setting and execution, relationship-building skills and personal career development. Michelle has experience in both corporate and not-for-profit settings. She has coached clients employed by Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Private Wealth Management, Liberty Mutual, GE Commercial Finance, Citigroup, various private equity firms and hedge funds, the National Center for the Arts (Canada) and the Department of Justice (Canada), as well as self-employed business owners and entrepreneurs. In addition to individual coaching, Michelle teaches workshops and facilitates ongoing coaching groups for professional women.
Previously, Michelle spent 12 years in the commercial banking and financial software industries in key relationship management and marketing roles. Her corporate experience allows her to relate to the challenges her clients face in high-power, demanding work environments.
Credentials & Education
Michelle is certified by the Coaches Training Institute, the largest in-person coach-training institute in the world. She is a member of the International Coach Federation, and holds their Associate Certified Coach designation. She is also a certified practitioner of the Meyers-Briggs® Type Indicator (MBTI) and the Strong Interest Inventory®.
Michelle graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a B.S. in Marketing and concentration in Psychology. Michelle is currently part of a select cohort of 18 change management professionals from around the globe who are engaging in a year-long, intensive Executive Masters Program in Change Leadership at Columbia University in New York City. The program is designed to deepen individuals’ and organizations’ capacity for initiating, managing and sustaining workplace change efforts in increasingly complex and global environments.
In addition to her professional work, Michelle is an active community volunteer. She dedicates time to her local school district, her synagogue’s women’s initiatives, the Scarsdale Adult School, and serves as Vice Chair of the Board for the Greyston Foundation, focusing on its Pathmaking and New Business Development activities.
On a Personal Note
Michelle lives in Westchester County, NY with her husband, three school-aged boys and dog Lola. She loves being outside in all weather, and enjoys hiking, snowshoeing, and most recently, running. She has also practiced yoga for more than 20 years.