At A-LIGN, CLIMBERS take many different paths to reach their summit. Being accountable for your work is a value celebrated through our annual value awards at CLIMB, A-LIGN’s annual training and team-building event.Angelia Brown, this year’s “Do the Right Thing, Always” award recipient, shares how her journey in leadership coaching began and how she’s developing A-LIGN’s future leaders.
Where are you from? How did you start your journey at A-LIGN?
After graduating from Oklahoma State, I married an Army service member and we traveled everywhere – Italy, North Carolina, Monterrey and more. When we returned to his home in Tampa, I was hired at the new Florida Aquarium and spent 25 years in Humans Resources. There I discovered my passion for leadership development and facilitating DiSC as a self-awareness and communication tool.
After some time, I decided that I wanted to try something new. I enrolled at the University of Miami to receive my coaching certificate to offer leadership development as a consultant. A-LIGN reached out not long after saying they were looking for a leadership coach and now I’ve been here just over a year. I love the work I do with our CLIMBERS, coaching our people and facilitating DiSC.
What has changed in your tenure?
We’ve changed how we share objectives and key results (OKRs) with CLIMBERS. When I was hired, we did OKRs for people managers and above only. Starting this year, we’ve enabled all CLIMBERS to contribute to A-LIGN’s OKRs and the strategic direction of the company. Something magical happens when everyone can see them and feel like their personal goals align with the company’s – everyone feels like the work they do matters and contributes to our direction and success.
Tell me about your role as A-LIGN’s Leadership Coach and Learning Facilitator.
At A-LIGN, I coach our current and future leaders, facilitate DiSC and develop leadership courses. When CLIMBERS are promoted to people managers, they begin 1:1 leadership coaching with me to elevate their leadership skills and help them reach their full potential. I also coordinate webinars as part of our Leadership Summit for people managers covering a variety of topics.
How do you leverage leadership coaching to help CLIMBERS grow?
A-LIGN’s leadership courses cover several topics. New leaders are taught how to lead themselves through things like team management and what motivates them, whereas experienced leaders learn about the inner workings of a team like trust, truth and communicating your vision. My goal is for CLIMBERS to say, “I learned what I know from A-LIGN.” That helps our brand, leadership programs and recruiting. They can use the skills they learn throughout their journey.
What attracted you to A-LIGN?
What stood out was how supportive the senior leadership team was. I knew that if I came to A-LIGN, it had to be with the backing of our leaders – otherwise leadership coaching does not work. Coming to a place that appreciates and values leadership was important for me, and every executive I interviewed with had a vision for how our leaders could reach the summit of their full potential.
What was it like to win the “Do the Right Thing, Always” value award at CLIMB?
What really got me was that I hadn’t even been here a year when I received the award! When Scott announced I won the “Do the Right Thing, Always” award I was surprised, because while I like to think what I do matters, I always feel like I’m behind the scenes helping others. I have a personal motto when it comes to work that has to do with making an impact in any role I have. I felt like I’d accomplished that when I won the award, even in the short amount of time I’ve been with A-LIGN.
What is your personal motto?
Make an impact wherever you go, and leave a legacy of great leaders.
It’s simple, but it really has to do with having a purpose. As a coach, my role is not to tell people what to do – it’s to help them find their own answers and make them a better leader.
How do you incorporate “Do the Right Thing, Always” into your coaching?
When I’m coaching, I help CLIMBERS identify how to do the right thing – finding their own truth, and how to lead in a way that’s honoring themselves and the people that report to them. I’ve had several CLIMBERS come back and say, “What you’ve taught me through leadership coaching has not only affected the way I lead, but it has changed my relationship with my family.” I can’t think of a better way to impact our leaders’ lives, knowing it affects them in more ways than one.
For me, that is “Do the Right Thing, Always,” helping CLIMBERS build their leadership legacy.
If you could describe A-LIGN in one word, what would it be?
We are a company that has a great vision not only for now but for the future. A-LIGN is a security and compliance partner based in Tampa that has achieved international reach in a very short period of time and continues to try new, innovative things – that’s why I would say dynamic.
What’s the best leadership advice you would give an aspiring leader?
Know what you’re passionate about doing, because it’s important to have a career that excites you. Additionally, ask questions and listen. Focus on what kind of culture you want to work in and ask the questions that are important to you. Leaders, good leaders, are always learning. Give up the need to know everything and let your peers help you. Ask questions like, “How do I get them involved? Who can help improve an idea?” That’s what innovation is all about.