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  • Writer's pictureAlexis Goggans, PCC

Meet our Winter 2024 Fellow - Meena Malik

We are happy to introduce you to Meena Malik; a musician, arts consultant, conflict mediator, and coach who was a student from our Spring 2023 Cohort and now returns as our Winter 2024 Fellow. We are so appreciative of the initiative, grounding, excitement, creativity, and care that Meena brings to her coaching work and business, Magpie Cultural Strategies. During her time studying with the IFCE, Meena demonstrated leadership inside and outside of the classroom; not only did she receive the highest score in her Capstone, she worked incredibly hard to take her business to the next level while advocating for arts and youth minded organizations.

Check out our latest blog to learn more about Meena’s coaching work and what she has been up to since graduating. And be sure to subscribe to her quarterly newsletter and follow her on LinkedIn to follow her inspiring work.

Can you tell us about yourself? I am a musician, arts consultant, conflict mediator and coach, who is known as a mover and shaker re-defining what conversations around equity in the arts look like. I am an immigrant from Japan, born to an Indian father and Japanese mother, and mother to a wonderful 9 year old. As the founder of Magpie Cultural Strategies, I am actively engaged in a national community of practice for anti-oppression work in the arts. I am also an alumna of the artEquity Facilitator Training, a member of the Emergent Strategy Ideation Institute Facilitation Cohort and a Senior Associate of The Aspire Group.

I have worked in the performing arts community as facilitator, grant panelist, educator, speaker, mediator, coach and consultant with organizations such as Network of Ensemble Theaters (NET), MAP Fund, The Boston Foundation, City of Boston Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture, Levitt Pavilion Los Angeles, Community Partners and many others. I’ve also performed with the Boston Opera Collaborative, the New England Orchestra and was previously in an international band that infused folk and classical music. I toured with them for 14 years and had the opportunity to perform across the east coast of the USA, the Midwest, Canada and even in Japan and South Korea. You can check out some of my music and cultural projects here.

What motivated you to become a coach?

As a full time consultant, I am working on building and strengthening different skill sets so that I can adjust flexibly to the needs that arise in the rooms that I am in. I always thought that coaching could be an extremely helpful tool in supporting leadership and executive teams through change, so that my work can be more effective and impactful for my clients. I was motivated to become a coach, because it allows me to support folks in embracing their own brilliance and strengths!

I am a coach, because I believe the wisdom that already exists within you. I want to partner with clients to bring these out to support them in achieving their goals, however small or big. I am passionate about creating a space where the people I work with can show up authentically and be fully present with me. I am my client’s biggest cheerleader, accountability buddy, and a mirror for deep reflection. 

What services do you offer?

Magpie Cultural Strategies is a social impact firm on a mission to realize a collective liberated future for the arts field and beyond. Through trauma-informed consulting, coaching, facilitation and mediation, I support individuals and organizations develop the mindset, systems and practices needed to shift towards healing and creating just cultures.

I utilize deep listening, skilled facilitation, and effective communication to support my clients and organizations as a partner to bring them closer to the goals they have set out for themselves. This can take the form of one off, pay-as-you-go sessions and 6 or 12 session coaching packages for individuals and organizations. I also offer a sliding scale payment system, so that budgetary restrictions do not become a barrier to participating in coaching.

What are your core values and how do you approach coaching? My core values are presence, empathy, collaboration, discovery, and moving at the Speed of Trust. As a partner, I help my clients ground themselves, encourage them to connect with their body, ask powerful questions, notice and voice trends that I am seeing, support those I work with to follow through on action steps they’ve identified, cheer them on, hold space for them and most importantly- affirm them and listen deeply to understand their innermost desires.

Some practices I use in my coaching include; meditation, visualization, journaling, animal oracle card or tarot reading, vocalization, toning, chanting, somatics, movement, and yoga. My certifications in Social Emotional Learning, Wellness, Mindfulness, and Mindful Movement through Breathe for Change have prepared me to use these frameworks with my coaching clients and in my consulting work.

What was it like being an IFCE student?

I did extensive research of different coaching certification programs before signing on to participate in the IFCE to find a program that seemed values-aligned. My friend Deidra who was enrolled in IFCE at that time recommended the program to me. After I had an orientation call with Christian, I knew this was the program for me! 

I really enjoyed IFCE, because it taught me valuable coaching skills, but also supported me in advancing my business. It was wonderful to get to know the other aspiring coaches in the cohort through the weekly classes and peer coaching. After the 6-months of training, I felt completely ready to start my coaching career, thanks to IFCE.

What have you been up to since graduation?

Currently, alongside my consultant and mediation clients, I have two individual coaching clients and two contracts with arts organizations to offer coaching to their staff and their grantee artists. I hope to acquire the Associate Certified Coach (ACC) credential through the International Coaching Federation (ICF) this year. Musically, I am in the midst of a series of development residencies to complete my next project called “Remembering,” which will premiere in October of this year. I am super excited about the performance!

What advice would you give to individuals thinking about becoming a coach?

If you are curious about becoming a coach, I recommend that you experience a coaching session yourself so that you can feel the empowerment firsthand. I highly recommend coaching with Alexis or Christian 🙂

Any final words to share?

Just these words: You are doing your best. You are enough. You are already whole. We are grateful that you exist in this world 💜

Interested in working with Meena?

To schedule a free introductory consultation with Meena, find a time to meet using her Calendly. You can also visit her website to see all the amazing events she is hosting and participating in. 

Meena is a dynamic and powerful coach. 100% of her peers enthusiastically recommended her coaching services. We are inspired by the way Meena continues to invest in developing her leadership and space-holding skills and we can’t wait to see what comes next in her journey. Please join us in following along to see what comes next!

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