Nora Whalen – Vice President and Co-founder of W4C3

[quote style=”boxed”]At the end of your workday, make a list of all the good things that happened. Write down your new connections, new ideas, notes from a great conversations, money coming in, things that are working, etc. On the tougher days, it helps keep you positive and it will inspire you by seeing how far you have come personally and professionally.[/quote]

She makes having it all look so simple and so easy, that is how clients and peers describe Nora Whalen, Vice President and co-founder of Women For Change Coaching Community (W4C3). Managing her roles as speaker, author, co-host of the Career Coaches Special Interest Group at her alma mater, Coach U, is more than a full-time job but Nora is energized by her passion for helping women and serving as a leader in the industry.

With a mission to bring together a community of support, the non-profit organization known as Women For Change Coaching Community (W4C3) makes coaching accessible for all women who are seeking positive change in their lives.

W4C3 currently serves women who have an annual household adjusted gross income of $40,000 or less. W4C3’s core program is the one-on-one coaching partnership. The concept is simple. A client and a professional coach commit to a round of 12 coaching sessions over 3 months, which are delivered via phone or Skype, as determined by the coach and client to work on creating sustainable positive change in the client’s life. Clients receive coaching on a variety of topics ranging from business building, career advancement, goal setting, personal fulfillment, self care, etc.

The most exciting part of W4C3 coaching is that women, from all over the country, now have access to service that previously was unavailable to them. According to the International Coach Federation, “individuals who engage in a coaching relationship can expect to experience fresh perspectives on personal challenges and opportunities, enhanced thinking and decision making skills, enhanced interpersonal effectiveness, and increased confidence in carrying out their chosen work and life roles.”

In addition, W4C3 is also building future leaders in the coaching industry. This program provides those new to the industry a place to get support while building their own private practices, network, learn, and try new techniques, continue their education, and a place to refer clients who may not be their ideal client.

Nora is proud to be part of a win-win community dedicated to changing the world one woman at a time.

What are you working on right now?

The provision of quality customer service for our clients and coaches; the promotion of W4C3’s mission; and the expansion of our organization in order to enrich the lives of women through coaching.

Where did the idea for Women For Change Coaching Community come from?

The co-founders and I realized our common passion for coaching the coaches in our industry and to assist and empower women, seeking positive change in their lives. Our goal was to create a unique ‘one-of-a-kind’ model to allow financially challenged women access to a positive community of like-minded women.

What does your typical day look like?

Letting the dogs out, yoga, connecting with our community and seeking their thoughts on today’s W4C3 Facebook Gratitude Wall. I devote my time to connecting, communicating and coaching people and to reading and writing.

How do you bring ideas to life?

Surround yourself with a team who share the passion for ‘our mission” and who are inspired by sharing their life experience, empathy and time to create an environment in which people feel heard, valued, appreciated and which opens the door to the flow of creativity. People will implement their own ideas, things you may never have thought of, if they are in a supportive environment that enables growth of confidence and freedom of expression.

What’s one trend that really excites you?

The continued growth of the coaching industry really excites me. New skills and ideas from other industries are flowing over and the organic development of the coaching industry, which is still relatively new, is incredible to be part of.

What was the worst job you ever had and what did you learn from it?

The best and worst job was working on a $15 million dollar Workforce Innovation in Regional Economic Development (WIRED) grant from Department of Labor in East Mississippi & West Alabama. I realized my love of entrepreneurs, how to run a nonprofit organization, the importance of listening to people’s ideas and concerns. I made a ton of mistakes, learnt heaps, met a diversity of people and I grew a lot from that experience.

If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

I love my journey. I had a lot of lessons to learn and still do, but I can’t say I would do anything differently.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

At the end of your workday, make a list of all the good things that happened. Write down your new connections, new ideas, notes from a great conversations, money coming in, things that are working, etc. On the tougher days, it helps keep you positive and it will inspire you by seeing how far you have come personally and professionally.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

I do not consider anything a failure unless I did not learn from my mistakes. If you do not learn the lesson the first time, you repeat the mistakes and you have not developed and matured as a person, that is when mistakes may manifest as failure. Coaching is a great way to overcome challenges, because it is a safe place to have a sounding board, accountability, and get encouragement to achieve a pathway for personal and professional growth.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

Trust but verify! People don’t always do what they say they are going to do. Try to prevent embarrassing situations by following up.

If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be and how would you go about it?

Everyone would have the opportunity to experience support when embracing new ideas, making their dreams come to life, making life changes, and have access to a person that will hold them accountable and challenge the disempowering ideas we all hold. W4C3 is my way of changing the world one woman at a time.

Tell us a secret.

Nothing is as hard as you think it is.

What are your three favorite online tools or resources and what do you love about them? shopping + saving money + philanthropy They figure out the best time of day to have your content released on social media platforms for the biggest impact and it’s free.

HARO: Help a Report Out is great to find media opportunities for your own business, but it is also an amazing way to add value to your network.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

The Leader Who Had No Title by Robin Sharma because it is a thought-provoking book about how you are doing as a leader (everyone is) and inspires the reader to embrace positive change.

Three people we should follow on Twitter and why?

@BigDreamFuel for inspiration and encouragement

@DanielleLaPorte for The White Hot Truth

@MelissaGalt to learn how to Prosper by Design

When was the last time you laughed out loud? What caused it?

My dogs make me laugh out loud daily. They are my stress relievers.

Who is your hero?

My question to this community would be “how can you be the hero of your story?”

What did you mean HARO is an amazing way to add value to your network?

People love it when they know you care. If you see a HARO query that would be good for a colleague who does branding, for example, email them with that opportunity. It is a free relationship-building tool that has a long lasting impact.

What is your personal mantra?

“I will figure it out!” That is borrowed from the brilliant Danielle LaPorte and it works every time I slip into the “I don’t know what to do” mindset.


Nora Whalen on Twitter: @norawhalen
W4C3 on Twitter: @Women4ChangeCC
W4C3 on Facebook:
W4C3’s website: