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Sonia Mcdonald, CEO and Founder Leadership HQ

Founder Friday with Sonia McDonald: Leadership HQ CEO shares secrets to strong alliances

Knowing the importance of brand and messaging and staying true to it. Not letting the no’s and rejections stop me as they are one step closer to that yes

Sonia McDonald

Sonia McDonald is on a mission to revolutionise the leadership landscape.

Fuelled by a life-changing event in 2006, she discovered her passion: empowering individuals to achieve continuous growth. This ignited her journey, starting with the LeadershipHQ blog in 2007, which quickly became a trusted resource for leaders seeking a more empathetic and human-centred approach.

Dynamic Business sat down with LeadershipHQ CEO Sonia McDonald to discuss her secret to building strong partnerships.

Sonia’s dedication to creating a significant impact led her to establish LeadershipHQ consulting in 2008, followed by McDonald Inc. in 2019. Through her diverse offerings, including insightful advisory services, captivating keynotes, personalized coaching, and engaging workshops, she has positively impacted countless leaders worldwide. Her goal: to unlock their full potential and guide them towards becoming courageous, kind, and impactful leaders.

Leading with Purpose

Sonia’s journey into leadership coaching started unexpectedly but bravely. As a single mom facing financial struggles after leaving her HR career, she stumbled into coaching by chance.. “After a number of rejections, finding a senior role as being a single mum was a challenge for many organisations. I met someone who worked in the leadership space who needed a leadership coach to develop and grow leaders on construction sites. I got the gig after faking it a little that I knew a lot about leadership and LOVED the work I was doing. I started a blog called LeadershipHQ and turned the blog into a company sixteen years ago. I had to call into my courage and I knew I could start and grow something myself. I wanted to be a role model for my daughter too.”

Looking back, she sees her path as a perfect fit, aligning with her passion, skills, and the need for more leaders in the world. “What inspires me – the impact, legacy and significance I can make to create more great leaders and to help as many people as I can see their inner leadership and greatness. To serve others where kindness and courage are paramount. Finally to see success and transformation in the organisations, teams and leaders I work with.”

Sonia emphasized the importance of believing in herself and staying true to her purpose.  “Believing in myself and staying focused on my ikigai. Surrounding myself with an incredible tribe and team as well as having a coach and mentors,” she said.

“Knowing the importance of brand and messaging and staying true to it. Not letting the no’s and rejections stop me as they are one step closer to that yes! Doing what I love such as writing and speaking  – my books and being on stage speaking to 1000’s of people over 16 years  – having a voice – have been fundamental in my growth. Knowing who my client is and their challenges and finding ways and solutions to help them. Also being very active on Linkedin and sharing wisdom to as many people as we can has been a game changer. Finally staying true to our values and staying focused on our mission and vision.”

Sonia said that her frim stands out for its genuine commitment to authentic partnership and innovative solutions.” Our approach is ego-free, and we are dedicated to going above and beyond to make a real impact on leadership and organizational culture. Clients often praise us for our caring, passionate, and authentic demeanor, which we take great pride in. Innovation is at the core of everything we do, as we constantly strive to stay abreast of the latest trends and developments in leadership and development. By actively listening to our clients and industry feedback, we identify pain points and develop tailored programs and platforms to address them.

“This year, we’re launching new initiatives, including targeted keynote presentations that address current challenges and showcase our thought leadership. Our Global Leadership Awards, a pioneering endeavor, celebrates courageous, kind, and inclusive leaders and organizations, setting us apart in the market. As an avid reader and researcher, I’m always seeking new insights and ideas to help our clients and audiences stay ahead of the curve. Our commitment to continuous learning and innovation ensures that we remain at the forefront of our field, delivering exceptional value to those we serve.”

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Yajush Gupta

Yajush Gupta

Yajush is a journalist at Dynamic Business. He previously worked with Reuters as a business correspondent and holds a postgrad degree in print journalism.

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