My Favorite Mistake — 229: From the White House to Executive Coaching: Asking the Hard Questions with Attorney Laura Terrell

Episode page with transcript, video, and more
My guest for Episode #229 of the My Favorite Mistake podcast is Laura Terrell, an executive coach with over 25 years of professional experience as a legal and business leader. In coaching, she focuses on the issues that are most important to professionals working to address issues in their careers and work lives.
Prior to launching her coaching practice, Laura was a Special Assistant to the President at the White House (George W. Bush admin), a senior level appointee at the US Department of Justice, an equity partner in two large global law firms, and in-house counsel at a major global consulting and business advisory firm.
Laura has led and managed teams of hundreds of people across multiple countries, and has been a top advisor for many Fortune 500 and FTSE 100 companies. Her clients come from a wide variety of industries, including law, education, financial services, pharmaceutical, oil & gas, non-profit, health care, and technology. Some of them are senior corporate executives like CEOs and general counsels; others are lawyers and consultants, entrepreneurs and small business owners, as well as professionals who may be returning to the workforce, making a pivot to a new career, or switching roles mid-career.
In this episode, Laura shares her favorite mistake story about not questioning the compensation that was offered to her when she was excited to take a White House role. How did she learn about the gap between her pay and the salaries received by others? How did Laura almost make, but manage to avoid repeating, the same mistake in her second government job? What can we learn from her about the importance of asking questions and advocating for ourselves?
Questions and Topics:

How did you learn about that pay gap?
People are generally afraid to ask questions (which can lead to mistakes)  
Afraid of being pushy, afraid of a bad answer?
How to get better at delivering bad information?
Making assumptions about how bad things would be?
Having to give bad news to a legal client? Key still for an attorney?
How and why do very successful executives still need coaching?
How would you describe ideal client?

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