"Here's what's great about all of us.

We're all fucked up in our own way."

It all started at 15 ...

Talking about fears is always very personal.

That's why I'm gonna tell you a lot about me here.

When I was 9 years old my parents started a martial arts school. It was a typical family business. My main task was serving drinks behind the bar.

No.

Not what you might think. Just non-alcoholic stuff. But sometimes, my dad served to his special friends a glass of homemade liquor named Sljivovica.

To be honest, in the beginning, I hated the job. I couldn’t wait to get out and go home. I had better things to do. For example, watching my favorite cartoon He-Man.

 

But then, somewhere around the age of 15, an interesting change started to happen.

During my shifts, clients started telling me about their life stories. It was exciting because it was like looking through an open window into other peoples’ lives.

It gave me a choice.
I could either look at my digital Casio-wrist-watch every minute and stare out of the window, or listen to other peoples’ life stories.

The choice was easy.

 

Here is an example why.

It was a typical Friday evening. After most of the people from the karate course had left, my dad finally started his last course of the day. Arnis, Philippine stick fighting.

One karate student was still sitting in his black kimono at the bar. He was around 23. His head was hanging down, staring and twisting his half-full glass of Coke.

Not knowing what I would hear in a moment, I asked him with a big smile if everything was ok.

He lifted his head and I earned a short: “No.”

"Baaamm! A straight punch into my face I didn't see coming."

After a moment of silence and mental head shaking, I asked him: “What’s wrong?”

He started revealing the problems he had with his girlfriend.

 

Yeah. I know what you might think. And you’re right. I had no clue about relationship problems at the age of 15. I did my best and I wanted to help him anyway.

 

He told me that he wasn't satisfied with the relationship and that he couldn’t be himself.

After 30 minutes of chatting, I asked him.

“Does your girlfriend know how you feel?”
He said. “No. But now I know she should. Thanks.”

And then he left.

 

When I saw him again the next week, he immediately came over to me with a huge smile and thumbs-up: “I’ve talked to my girlfriend.”

I couldn't believe how good it felt. I was proud as hell, because in my imagination I had helped an adult.

 

What I’d never realized back then when I was serving drinks, was that coaching would become my calling.

Since then I've honed my coaching skills a lot.
I did an immense amount of self-education in human psychology. I attended a top European Coaching School. And even though I first started a career in business, I was coaching leaders and co-workers there.

But here is what I finally realized about the coaching profession:
Beside many other skills, the most important one I developed at the age of 15 was  – listening.

"Don't give advice. Listen, and ask better questions.
- Author unknown

Is that all?

Well, not if you read on.
Here are a couple of questions people often ask me.

Why do I coach people?

In one sentence. It's great to see how my clients progress in their life.

What are you doing currently?

I have two professions. I'm an expert for cooperation and innovation management and a systemic coach. I use my coaching skills every day, later I will tell you more.

As a systemic coach, I see the world and humans a bit different. It can give you a new perspective as well.

Why is it so essential?

My clients contact me when they are stuck in their thought loops or when they want to explore a fresh perspective. To be "on top" of your own life, you have to look at life differently. 

I ask you a series of specific questions to sort out the mess (this is how my clients often describe it). Or we use other proven techniques to get you where you want to be.

At the end of your life everybody should say:

“I had an amazing life and I did the best I could do.”

Where do you coach?

It depends on my clients’ needs. It can be a face-to-face meeting in their office, or via Skype. Sometimes we have a phone call and in other cases, we chat on e-mail.

Who do you work with?

I mostly work with leaders in the business world. Throughout the years, I gained many experiences in different-sized businesses. From small businesses and start-ups up to big corporations (the heavy hitters).

What difference does it make to your clients?

Because of my broad and deep understanding of business topics, my clients feel understood. They often tell me they quickly relax because they don't have to explain much to be understood. Sometimes it’s also good to have no experience at all in a topic. 

 

"I make it work" is one of my business guidelines.

My life before coaching ...

What did you do before coaching?

I studied mechanical engineering and tested luxury cars all around the world. It was fun and still became boring after a while.
I then got my first coaching training and coached business leaders. I quickly realized that I wanted to learn more. Although I'm not a psychologist, I read tons of books about psychology, the human brain, communication, therapy, coaching, learning, and a bunch of other business topics.
In addition, I passed a two-year training in one of the best coaching schools in Germany.

I have a degree as a Systemic Coach, Agile Coach and Change Consultant (sorry for the buzz-word-bingo).

Then I got the opportunity to use my new skills at work.

I switched positions and jumped into Cooperation & Innovation Management. In the beginning, the water was very cold. I like that. My background covers topics like corporate investing, evaluating start-up teams (my focus area is Israel), being a Board Observer in start-ups, own incubation projects, and a lot more. 

Last words: I didn't talk the walk. I walked the walk myself.

Throughout the years, I learned what is needed to ignite people over the long run. What is needed to stay focused. What is needed to create as much impact at work as you can. I often heard things like: “That can't be done.” I did it and learned a lot along the way.

My education background showed me that it's all in our minds. Hence, be careful of what you feed your brain with. It affects the outcome hugely. 

People don´t know you, but than ...

What do you often hear before people hire you?

“Can he really help me? He looks so young.” That’s what people often thought before we started working together. That vanishes during the first session. People often think that coaching is fluff. And to be honest there is a lot of fluff out there. Did you know that you can call yourself coach after a weekend course? I think it takes way more than that. Therefore, I can provide a sound coaching education and lots of concrete background in other areas.

Before I start working with a client, we chat.

When I think I'm not the right guy, I will refer them to someone who is a better fit. That’s the best for both sides. I've never had that happen, but who knows. If you are not satisfied, you will get your money back without any hassle. It's as simple as that.

And to answer the question of how old I am.

My birthday is on the 1st February 1978. I'm looking forward to your greetings :-)

Family, friends and free time ...

Michael Napsi  - Michael-en

Can you tell us something interesting about your parents?

My parents are humble and hard-working immigrants with huge emotional intelligence. They always supported my three sisters and me and told us: “Learn as much as you can.” When my dad was 55, he learned a new martial arts style. He is one of my role models.

What are your hobbies?

Because of the family business we owned, fitness is one of my favorite hobbies.
Usually, I do it four times a week and it's necessary, otherwise; I get grumpy - ask my girlfriend. Lifting weights helps me to filter out the clutter of the day. In addition, the positive side effect is — you stay healthy. There is a bright guy in our gym with just 65 years on his clock. He looks and acts like a young man. That’s how I want to be when I'm at that age.

What bugs you about the hobby?

Well, that’s maybe paradoxical. It doesn´t matter how often you work out, it’s always heavy! I sometimes think “Men, why do you do that? The sofa is soo much better.” I once read a quote that was like this. “It's always hard, you just get stronger.” That’s so true in many parts of life.

How do you spend your free time?

Besides weight lifting, reading and writing I spend time with friends and family. And when we visit my wife's mom, I'm hanging out with this little guy. His name is Moritz and he is great.

Moritz 2 - Michael-en

Tell me even more ...

What are your qualities?

I'm straightforward and honest. I'm picky — which means I regularly scrutinize everything I do. Be it about me, business and friendships. The good thing about it is that people always approach me because they know I will tell them what I think. Not what they probably want to hear. That’s what people like about me. There are people who don't like that but often come back. Honest and sound feedback takes you further in life, not the candy icing.

My clients often say: “You´re the nice guy who kicks my ass in a gentle way. Always respectful and with a smile, or a joke on his lips.”

Do you have any awards?

No. I'm far away from being famous. But I had a great achievement when I was 6 or 7 years old. I bought an almost new bike from a friend for just 50 bucks. We both thought it was a fair deal. Well, I had to return it back the very next day because his dad saw it differently.

The weird stuff ...

What makes you unique?
My laugh and it is loud. You will sooner or later hear it when we work together. There must be fun, isn't it?!

What makes your office unique?
I have a picture above my desk that says: “Life is beautiful.” I think it's true. 

Anything else?

Jap. It's hard for me to keep my desk organized. Somehow, it always gets chaotic without me being involved. Most of the time when writing articles. But hey, it's my chaos and up to now, I've found everything I was searching for.

 

Talk to you soon.

Have a great day,

Michael

 

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