We had the good fortune of connecting with Madeline Schmidt and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Madeline, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Starting my own business was an ongoing conversation I had with myself for many years. I was comfortable in the corporate world, producing great results, advanced my career, and had the security of a steady paycheck. People continued to ask me, after almost 20 years of doing what you do, have you considered consulting for companies? It was a worthy question. There were too many unknowns and fears about the idea of starting my own business, and honestly not much of a drive to conquer those fears because I was happy in the corporate world. Reflecting back, it’s clear, my gut knew while I was capable, it wasn’t the right time. Fast forward several years, it seemed so many factors converged that turned what initially were fears into excitement, energy, personal growth opportunities, and positive change. Before making the leap, I spent hours talking with others in the same industry, who knew me. I wanted to understand what it was really like to be on your own, and was I the right person to do this. Through those conversations that little voice that told me all these years “this isn’t for you” turned into “this may be the most authentic and natural next step for you.” My entire career has been dedicated to helping others grow and develop. Yet, here I was, feeling like I was no longer growing or expanding my impact. It was time for a change. The voice inside me was getting very, very loud. And I was pleasantly surprised and delighted that the fears that initially held me back now felt like exciting challenges to ignite my own growth and development and expand my impact. I was modeling what I preach to those who I coach and participate in my training sessions…the magic happens when you get out of your comfort zone. Now, I feel incredibly grateful to have the opportunity to support many companies and their employees and truly impact their lives in a positive way.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Before I went on my own, for about 20 years I led the Talent & Leadership Development function for various companies in the San Diego area. In many cases, I’ve joined or supported companies when they are at that phase where they are no longer a “start up” and realizing they need to tap into the potential of their people to accelerate and grow their business and achieve their strategic and cultural objectives. Since jumping out on my own a few years ago, I’ve been very grateful that, so far, 100% of my clients have come from either personal experience with me or through referrals from others. I have trained, developed and coached thousands of individuals, high potentials, emerging leaders, and executives in leveraging their current strengths, developing new strengths, shifting mindsets and approaches to achieve personal and professional goals, and uncovering blind spots that get in the way of growth and success. I have worked with companies to help them identify and truly make their espoused values come to life. I love to help people understand how their mindsets drive their actions, and how to use the deeper understanding of human motivation to inspire people to find the best version of themselves and bring that to life and work everyday. I am proud that I’ve set myself apart from many in my field. Through my style which has been described as professional, engaging, energetic, authentic, participative, and humorous but also through my focus of making things very practical so people can see immediate results. During this challenging time dealing with the Pandemic, it seems that companies need this practical inspiration now more than ever. I’ve had participants in my training programs come back to me later and tell me that being in that session with me literally changed their life. That is the best compliment anyone could ever give me. It’s why I do what I do!

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
We live in the best city in this country. So much so that I created a San Diego travel blog of our favorite spots, that locals can enjoy too! If I had visitors in San Diego, the focus would be outdoor experiences. From the beaches to the mountains and anywhere in between, this is what San Diego truly has to offer! Coastal hikes (Cabrillo, Torrey Pines, Sunset Cliffs, La Jolla Cove), Day trips to Julian, Warner Springs (Eagle Rock) and Anza-Borrego for some adventure hiking and exploring, coastal recreation whether that’s biking along the boardwalk, renting a Stand Up Paddle-Board. Mix in some craft brew from the many local breweries and you can’t go wrong. We have so many hidden gems around the county that truly make San Diego unique!

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Dedicated to all my clients! Without their confidence in me, I wouldn’t get to do what I do! I truly have the best clients and their committment to engaging and growing their employees is what inspires me.

Website: www.monarch-consulting.com
Instagram: @sdfamilytravelers (the travel blog I mentioned)
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/madelinejschmidt/