When I first met Esther, I was struck by an unusual combination of openness and sharp, grounded intelligence – and as I’ve grown to know and work with her more over the years, these two contrasting aspects have revealed a whole range of associated gifts, which make her a delight to work with.
Esther’s ‘openness’ takes many forms. She has a natural sensitivity and humility – which make her inquiry skills second to none. Clients are often surprised at how they find themselves needing to consider previously unconsidered aspects of their situation, as Esther asks her gently probing questions and shares her own insights into the behaviours and organisational dynamics that she’s noticing.
I find Esther incredibly respectful of her others’ views and experiences, which she is always seeking to include and integrate in the way she formulates her analyses and makes suggestions about next steps. In this, her style represents a refreshing contrast to the more familiar ‘heroic’ consultancy styles one encounters in the change space.
Other aspects of Esther’s ‘openness’ are more straightforwardly enjoyable. Put simply, she is wonderfully creative, inspiring and a joy to work with. Much of life is embraced with a lack of judgement – and it’s little wonder that clients often commend Esther for the humour in her facilitation and coaching. This seems to enable them – and me too! – to relax, and open up more of ourselves to fulfil new potentials...
Yet, as Integral Change clients also often remark, Esther will not shy from ‘telling it how it is’. She knows her stuff, and can suddenly surprise you with her challenging authority – naming something that you do know needs to be addressed, despite your avoiding it for a while. Relatedly, she has an unusual gift for being able to bring just the right frame-work, or model, or piece of theory to the situation at any one time and offer it in just the right sort of way.
And I’ve learnt that within this other, very focussed and grounded side of Esther, lies great ‘staying power’ and resourcefulness. In partnering clients – or colleagues – she retains an approachability and steadfastness which often feels hugely valuable in difficult times.
She is also a wonderful pianist and I believe you can ‘hear’ all these different strands of her character most beautifully and directly in her compositions – some of which I’m delighted that we’re including on this site. (See What happens when engagement is missing)...
Click to download Esther's biography.