The Circle: Women of Colour in Leadership is an online cohort coaching experience for racialized women in (or, interested in) leadership at any level.
Interested in running a cohort of The Circle with your group or organization? Book a free consultation with Valery!
A unique opportunity tailored to women of colour in leadership
Leadership journeys are different for women of colour.
We face unique barriers
Despite our excellence, there are not nearly enough of us in formal leadership positions.
And, not enough of us whose leadership styles are celebrated instead of judged as needing ‘fixing’ to match white-male norms.
When one of us does succeed in ‘climbing the ladder’ she often then needs to contend with the realities of being the ‘only one in the room.’
We also bring unique gifts
We come face-to-face with the need to find ‘power within’ from very early on in our journeys.
It is a testament to our characters that many of us continue to listen to our internal calls to leadership.
Whether that means securing our seat at the table, building our own tables, or leading from where we are as we embrace leadership as a way of being, and not a title.
We are unique, but, there are few unique leadership development offerings tailored to our needs
For years women of colour have been calling in a world where we have access to mentors who understand and look like us, and sponsors who champion us.
As emerging and established leaders, we want leadership development opportunities that consider our lived experiences and offer strategies for our biggest barriers.
The Circle: Women of Colour in Leadership is a unique, tailored leadership development opportunity that sees these gaps and fills them.
Designed and facilitated by career and leadership coach Valery Navarrete, The Circle offers you the foundations you need to thrive in your leadership life as a woman of colour.
The Circle offers you a space to gather with peers, tools to clarify who you are as a leader, and guidance to identify strategies unique to your lived experience as you take the next steps in your leadership journey.
Does your group or organization have three or more women of colour ready for a leadership development experience that centres their intersectional identities? Book a free consultation to explore bringing this cohort experience to your team!
What to expect
“The whole experience was fantastic and Valery herself is not only a skilled facilitator but a role model of impactful female leadership.” – Past Participant
Cohort members access:
Two individual online coaching sessions
- An individual, 45-minute one-on-one Kick-Off coaching session with Valery before the group sessions begin; and,
- An individual, 45-minute, one-on-one Momentum coaching session with Valery after group sessions are complete, both tailored to your unique needs.
Four online group sessions
- Four group sessions designed with a mix of coaching and workshop-style content where you’ll also build connection with other cohort members. You’ll gain information and inspiration to help you clarify who you are as a leader, identify strategies unique to your lived experience, and chart the next steps in your leadership journey.
Guided self-reflection activities and digital copies of all program content
- In the weeks between group sessions, guided self-reflection exercises will support you to go deeper on elements of The Leadership Life Circle that call to you the most, or to gain clarity around those that surface challenges.
- Digital copies of all materials used in our group and one-on-one sessions, as well as curated content to review between sessions, will be yours to keep for your continued personal growth.
A small cohort of peer women of colour with whom to grow in community
- The Circle is designed as a group coaching experience because research and Valery’s own lived experience demonstrates that women of colour need more access to ‘networks’ and ‘community’ to thrive.
The Circle: Women of Colour in Leadership is a nine-week-long cohort coaching experience grounded in the elements of Valery’s Leadership Life Circle. Through group sessions, individual coaching sessions, guided self-reflection exercises, and community connection you and your small group of up to eight cohort members will explore:
- Your Leadership Lineage: Who are you as a Black, Indigenous, or woman of colour leader? What is your leadership style and what are its origins?
- Your Strategies and Your Team: Guided by the alchemy of cohort members, we will explore your lived experiences and co-create strategies around topics such as visibility, invisibility, power, real self-care, goal-setting, mentorship, sponsorship, and advancement.
- Your Leadership Vision: What possibilities are you pursuing? What impact do you want to have, even as you recognize the barriers? How will you move your vision to reality?
Are you and two or more other women of colour ready to step into a unique leadership development offering tailored to your needs? Book a free consultation to explore bringing this cohort experience to your group or organization!
What past participants are saying
The Circle was an opportunity for me to increase awareness of my unique style and strengths as a leader. The group sessions were a space for meaningful conversations to learn from the experiences of other women of colour leaders as well as getting peer support for some relevant challenges. Valery’s group and one-on-one coaching provided relevant perspectives and connections to valuable resources to support my current professional goals. The whole experience was fantastic and Valery herself is not only a skilled facilitator but a role model of impactful female leadership.Marialejandra Reyes, Social Consultant
Valery created a thoughtful, inclusive intentional space! Thanks to her I was connected with a great cohort of women and also learned about other racialized women doing incredible things! Valery and the cohort were instrumental in helping me carve out intentional time and space to reflect, plan and think – all acts of resistance as a racialized woman!Rann Sharma, Director People and Culture, CMHA Toronto
*Before starting the Circle, 100% of past participant survey respondents strongly disagreed, disagreed, or were neutral about their feeling that they had the strategies and resources needed to thrive. After the cohort, 100% agreed or strongly agreed that they did.
Through The Circle I gained a deeper understanding of my own unique leadership style and strengths, knowledge on how to thrive as a racialized woman in leadership, and a community of amazing women to lean on for support and friendship. I would highly recommend The Circle to all women of colour!Jessica Ramlakhan, Senior Consultant, Boardwalk Group
It gave me the space to think about my leadership style (which I didn’t even know I had), helped me deeply think about my future goals related to leadership and my challenges. Participating in something like this with a group of women with similar shared experiences is incredibly uplifting, validating and powerful. It was something I didn’t know I needed until I participated. Valery’s . . . approach is supportive, validating, informative and powerful. I highly recommend this to any women of colour who are discovering their path to leadership or already there.Priyanka Patel, Executive Assistant, CAMH
By and for women of colour
The Circle: Women of Colour in Leadership is developed and facilitated by Valery Navarrete. Valery is a mixed-race Latinx woman of colour who has held leadership roles across the health and social sectors. She believes connection, community, and interdependence are key to helping us thrive.
Read Valery’s bio and learn about how she weaves anti-oppression into her work.
Listen to Valery talk about why she’s passionate about coaching women of colour with Passion Coach Shilbee Dhalla-Kim:
Group coaching sessions typically take place at the same time every two weeks.
Participants book their individual, one-on-one kick-off and momentum coaching sessions with Valery at a mutually convenient time during the first and last weeks of the cohort.
“Valery and the cohort were instrumental in helping me carve out intentional time and space to reflect, plan, and think – all acts of resistance as a racialized woman!” – Past Participant
Take the next step in your leadership journey as part of a cohort of women of colour ready to take on intersectional barriers and tap into your unique gifts, together.
As emerging and established leaders, women of colour deserve leadership development opportunities that consider their lived experiences and offer strategies for their biggest barriers. Book a free consultation and get your cohort of The Circle started today!
“It was something I didn’t know I needed until I participated.” – Past participant
Who is The Circle for?
The Circle is for women of colour in (or interested in) leadership at any level, and in any sector. Typically, each cohort contains three to eight participants from a single organization; however, cohorts that bring together participants with no group / organizational affiliation are possible. Participants are asked to share some brief background information a part of the kick-off process to help Valery tailor the cohort to their needs.
Trans women of colour are women and are welcome to participate. The Circle is inclusive of, but not tailored to, the experiences of trans women of colour. Non-binary individuals are welcome to register if they are called to participate. The Circle is inclusive of , but not tailored to, the experiences of non-binary individuals.
What if I want my employer to pay for a cohort at my workplace?
Valery strongly encourages employers / organizations to fund all / part of the cost of running a cohort of The Circle at your workplace.
Valery is open to working with groups of three or more women interested in having Valery facilitate a cohort of The Circle for them without employer / organizational involvement. Before moving forward, however, she is available to first help you pitch the value of employer / organizational funding if desired.
Is sliding scale pricing available?
Yes. As a BIWOC consultant, facilitator, speaker, and coach, Valery weaves anti-oppression into all of her service offerings and is open to understanding and doing what she can to meet your budgetary needs.
Will The Circle be right for participants not interested in more senior roles right now? Or, who might be thinking about taking their career in new directions?
Valery has made a number of transitions over her 20 year career. This has included stepping in and out of formal leadership roles as she navigated the right life / work balance for her. She has found that better understanding her experiences as a racialized woman leader have helped her to make better decisions about what’s next in her career, including her decision to start her own business. While she cannot guarantee the same will be true for all participants, she invites you to get curious about whether that might be the case. If you think it might be then she looks forward to welcoming you into The Circle!
What has informed the design of The Circle: Women of Colour in Leadership, and in what expertise do you ground your coaching practice?
The Circle: Women of Colour in Leadership leverages Valery’s 20 years of experience as a woman of colour in leadership. Check out this recent article she wrote about becoming an executive leader for the first time at the age of 30.
As a consultant, facilitator, speaker, and coach, Valery has extensive experience helping people and organizations dream into brighter futures grounded in new understandings of their present realities.
Valery is also an affiliated Innoweave social innovation coach which has given her expertise in the differences between coaching, training, and consulting while she helps community organizations pursue greater social impact.
The design of the Circle is also informed by survey feedback from participants in the spring 2023 cohort of The Circle.
Valery spent three years as a volunteer crisis counsellor with Distress Centres Toronto. What she learned about holding space and asking intentional questions in that time deeply informs her coaching practice.
Valery is on track to complete the next level of her ICF coaching certification in fall 2023.
In her early career, Valery benefited from the support of several mentors. She then herself became a mentor in the context of the institutional leadership roles she held up until 2020. When she started her own business in 2021, she made career and leadership coaching for Women of Colour one of her services as she knows women of colour do not have enough access to coaches and mentors with lived experience of being racialized.
Is individual one-on-one coaching available?
Yes, Valery offers individual one-on-one coaching.
If you are looking for a coaching experience designed to support you to reach a specific career or leadership goal, or, you, a mentor, or an employer have identified a need for coaching around a specific issue, then one-on-one coaching might be a better fit for you.
Do you have another question about The Circle: Women of Colour in Leadership? Please reach out to Valery using this contact form.