A little bit about me…

Dr Ira Laketic- Ljubojevic BSc (hons) MSc DPhil M Prac NLP

I am a life & business coach, development consultant, public speaker and facilitator with fifteen years experience in senior roles – including a chief executive position – in the fields of management and people development. My expertise over the last twenty years spans public and charitable sectors – I have worked in health, social care & support, housing, informatics and academia. I have clinical, scientific, management and people development education and training.

I bring together an understanding of leadership capability; management & organisational development; and, individual capability & behaviour to help empower people so they can improve their experience and get the best possible outcome for themselves, their families and their organisations.

Being at the forefront and driving positive and lasting change that promotes improved outcomes, performance and wellbeing is what matters to me in my professional life. My personal values and unusual life experiences are what motivate me to engage with and support people to improve their quality of life and to facilitate equality of opportunity for them.

I care about people. That is the driving force behind my passion for quality, improvements and wellbeing in this field of work.

My journey and the power of self-belief

I’m passionate about empowering people so they improve their experience and get the best possible outcome for themselves, and their organisations.

Why does that matter to me?

Imagine living a nice, comfortable life. Your path is laid in front of you –you know where it leads and you don’t need to put much effort into things.
Next, imagine an event that throws your life out of balance. Imagine suddenly finding yourself in the middle of a civil war, unable to comprehend how that happened and what may come next. That’s what happened to me, my family and my friends.

In this state of utter shock and disbelief, I realised that there were two ways of dealing with this reality and its nastiness: I can stay in my “normal” role – a delicate, privileged young woman – a “damsel in distress” waiting to be rescued.

Or, I could choose to dig deeper into myself, find the resources I need and take action, despite the risks. I could choose to survive. I decided to change my life by changing my attitude to it and by changing my behaviours.

Despite the odds being against me, I succeeded! I took help when it was offered, I helped others whenever I could, I pulled resources with others when it was possible, I took calculated risks when I had to, I listened carefully and I used the information I could get hold of to adapt my decisions. I managed to survive, but then I started to live and thrive.

I learnt so much during that time – about myself and about the world. I learnt to ask simple questions – of myself and others – like: what, how, where, who and why – to help make better decisions and progress in the right direction. I found out that what makes life worth living and makes us grow and develop does not always come from the happy, comfortable side – it also comes from everything that makes us suffer. I discovered the resilience, the resourcefulness, the commitment, the strength I had within. I realised others have that too.

I use that knowledge and experience to coach others see issues in a different light and find ways to improve their lives and realise their goals. Sometimes, exactly because of the adversity and the enormity of the challenge in front of us, we become motivated to attain our goals.

Empowerment is the key. I help people, I am there for them to give them every support, every insight and every tool I possess, but each person must have the drive and the will to change – I cannot give that. The responsibility for the change and the results is on the individual themselves, as it is between sessions that the majority of work and resulting outcomes happens. In sessions, I facilitate this process by helping people change the way they perceive themselves and the rest of the world. It is, essentially, the transformation of how the person thinks, combined with the desire to change and challenge themselves, that will ultimately allow and enable that person to realise their goals.

In my experience, if you truly listen to people – you’ll discover what they need. And if you are genuinely there for them to help them find the way, realise that opportunity and improve those outcomes – people sense it, they respond to it by discovering new ways of thinking, behaving and doing things. They get motivated to succeed and as their confidence grows, they get empowered to make a notable difference to what matters to them.

That is the work I do and that is the way I do it. I feel privileged to coach people and advise businesses to develop and thrive.

Changes are almost always painful, but the progress through re-discovering and building on own self-belief is exciting and the transformation that results is powerful and long-lasting. Coaching truly takes you beyond your expectations.