Leading in real time with Michelle Ray

Aug 21, 2021
Headshot of Michelle Ray, leadership coach

In our world of constant technological and generational change, successful leadership requires transparency, parity, collaboration, and genuine connection with employees and customers. How can you shift your thinking around leadership to become effective in real time, and be ready for the inevitable disruptions to come? Enter Michelle Ray.

An international leadership keynote speaker, entrepreneur, author, and educator, Michelle is passionate about helping leaders build forward-thinking organizations and navigate change with confidence. One of fewer than 1,500 worldwide to have earned the Certified Speaking Professional designation, Michelle has helped global brands such as Whirlpool, Lush Cosmetics, Flight Centre, and PayPal (among others) take on the challenges of engaging teams and retaining talent in a world of constant change.

We are thrilled to be working with Michelle on her September 2021 release, Leading in Real Time, which shares her valuable insights about how to become a more effective, ever-evolving leader.

Which three words best describe you?
Hardworking, resilient, passionate.

What is your book about?  
My goal with Leading in Real Time is to help leaders remain responsive, ready, and relevant in a radically changing world. By practicing greater self-awareness and open-mindedness, they will be ideally positioned to make authentic connections with their teams, embrace change, and confidently lead their organizations in real time.

What is the last book you read?
Michelle Cederberg’s The Success-Energy Equation. I loved her practical strategies to manage my energy, work more efficiently, and enjoy a balanced, imperfect life.

Who is your favorite author?
Nick Hornby. I love his humor and the clever depiction of his characters. I find his books thoroughly enjoyable escapes, and I appreciate his easy-to-read style. As of late, I’ve become a fan of Louise Penny. She is a phenomenal storyteller!

What was your first job, and what did it teach you?
When I was a teenager, I worked in my parents’ retail clothing stores—never a dull moment. They were extraordinary entrepreneurs and role models who remain forever in my heart. They passed on life and business lessons that have stuck with me to this day. These include respect yourself, respect others, and create your own destiny.

Was your last trip for business or pleasure?
Pleasure. I finally “escaped” to California after 18 months of not going anywhere. My husband and I drove and it took three days. We survived the drive…and each other. It was great to reconnect with his family.

What is your personal motto?
Lead yourself first because no one else will.

Where do you find inspiration?
Children. I adore them, especially when they are little. I can’t get enough. Their imagination and zest for life is inspiring, and they remind me to live in the moment…in real time.