Issue 43

UTD Coaching News

Journey to the Right Side

    By Tijen Genco

My education allowed me to utilize the left side of my brain to its maximum. I am an engineer by trade. I have been working in the corporate world for Fortune 100 companies over 20 years. I am also an expert in process improvement.  Therefore, when I look at things, I analyze, see what is wrong, I categorize, and I fix them. This was all good until I decided to take part in Executive and Professional Coaching program at The University of Texas Dallas. Although for the last couple of years I was feeling that my left brain was burned out and my creativity wanting to come out, this program felt like an ice cold shower after taking a steam bath first! Let me tell you why…

Initially I was trying to get all my meetings scheduled with my cohort for peer coaching sessions. I wanted to be organized and put the meetings in my calendar as I am so used to working in this manner in the corporate world. I was having no luck with this approach, as my colleagues were more relaxed and laid back. Things had their own time and I was to learn and adjust to this style of engagement. Also my process improvement training taught me to study the problem, become one with the problem so you can understand it and resolve it. During our first class, Dr. Hicks said, you don’t have to have a detailed understanding of the problem to solve it. Wow!!! What a shift…we are not to spend so much time talking about the problem.  Ok, I lost my structure of being organized now I cannot look at problems. What is next??? The next thing was that we were to look at clients as the expert in their own lives and believe that every client is creative, resourceful and whole. Goodness gracious, if I am not the “problem solver, rescuer” what am I then? I didn’t know that by enrolling in this program the ground underneath of me would shift completely and I would be renewed and free all my assumptions. I guess, this is why Teresa Pool said during her first class on Strategic Inquiry: “If you don’t want to grow, don’t coach!” I was thinking at that time, why such a statement? Of course we all want to improve ourselves, otherwise why are we here? Soon after, I noticed that my willingness to change myself was a lot less than my willingness to change others and make them perfect. Thank God for our Peer Coaching Sessions and our sessions with mentor coaches that desire has shifted already J I am only in my second semester yet I feel that a butterfly is coming out of the cocoon. It is beautiful, resourceful and whole and sees others the same way, and helps them to see themselves in that way. What a gift!!!

As challenging as it has been, my journey to the right side has been joyful and freeing. I just hope from the bottom of my heart, that your journeys to whatever side you are on, will be as enlightening as mine has been. My deepest gratitude to all the professors of the program, all the authors of the books, and to all of you for taking this path of helping each other feeling “resourceful, creative and whole."


Tijen Genco


Tijen Genco spent her career in US working at fortune 100 companies such as Shell, Morgan Stanley Investment Management and Merck & Co. Tijen worked in various fields within IT as Business Analysis and Architecture, Project and Program Management, and IT Management. Tijen has an Electronics Engineering degree. She spent first ten years of working experience as Research and Development and IT Management fields in Turkey. With her desire to improve the performance of the service and processes she has obtained her Master Black Belt status in Lean Six Sigma efficiency methodology and became a coach in this field to the individuals and project teams. In her current position as Master Black Belt/Program Manager, Tijen continues to coach IT Portfolio Management Teams. Although Tijen’s background is in IT, working with various project teams across corporations provided her experience of various business processes. Tijen is also trained in Facilitative Leadership, High Performance Learning with Michael Gelb and Strategy Execution and Change Management Techniques with Conner Partners. Tijen is dedicated to the concept that Coaching is both a Business tool and a Life tool.  Therefore she also obtained education and certification in various yoga, Pilates and meditation techniques. She provides coaching and workshops to private audiences in self development and healing with mind-body modalities.


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