Jill Douka is a Life Coach, Workshop Leader and Author. Jill is a member of International Coach Federation and International Coach Academy ambassador. She is considered by the press one of Greece’s most acclaimed coaches. She is part of the European Business Mentors program.
She is Greek Canadian, has been working in the Human Resources field since 2003 and has recruited, trained, and coached more than 1.000 individuals in Greece, Italy and USA.
Uniqueness Development Group offers coaching, personal development workshops and the online positivity trainings.
MO: What attracted you to the profession of coaching?
Jill: Well it was 10 years ago, when I was considered to have everything I wanted: a good relationship, interesting and well paid job, a great family and friends. Nevertheless, I was not feeling fulfilled. So I decided to start working with a coach. Within months, my life really transformed. I opened up my options and set higher goals. I was feeling great when those goals started to become reality. After a while, I was certain that this gift should be transferred to others as well. I love working with people, was already in the field, so I decided to study at one of the best coaching schools, International Coaching Academy for which I am an ambassador up until now.
MO: Can you talk about how you developed The Uniqueness Concept? Where did your inspiration come from, what resources contributed to its development?
Jill: I was doing classical ballet and contemporary dance since I was 3 until 25 years old. Dance focuses on what is wrong and you strive to correct it. Thing is that, by doing this you miss the positive attributes you have and you focus on what is wrong with you.
When I was working in the Turin Winter Olympic Games I had to find a way to keep 600 people motivated in temperatures below 0 for over 15 days. By reading various inspirational books and through coaching, I understood that in order to excel we need to focus on the positive attributes that differentiate us and not on our negative aspects. This is what successful people do!
I started doing tons of research (for over 3 years) with tools like positive psychology, NLP and coaching and developed a 360 degrees self evaluation which is played as the online Uniqueness Game. Through this evaluation you find out what are your Unique characteristics and you compile you 3 line personal Uniqueness phrase.
MO: Who is your target audience? What can a client expect when they start the coaching process with you?
Jill: Our clients are managers and entrepreneurs (recently we started working with celebrities) who are successful and want to take their lives to the next level. When we start coaching we set the goal. 8,9/10 of our clients reach their goal almost half way through our sessions. They usually start by saying; I don’t think that I can change …. (and they state the problem) but I want to try it with you. Within weeks, their perception has changed and they take their lives in their hands 100%. I must tell you that every time this happens the feelings are just transformational. I feel so blessed to be able to support such amazing people make their dreams a reality.
MO: What is the difference between the industrial age and the age of knowledge? How will this shift in values affect the business world?
Jill: In the industrial age people were paid to do work with their hands. They had to be at the factory a specific time, on their shift because the assembly would start. That was the reason they were paid with fixed wages. You work this number of hours and you get paid this amount of money.
Today, most of the people “sell” their knowledge. The “value” of our knowledge depends on who wants to buy our expertise and how much they are willing to pay for it. Gone are the days when people were working for one employer for all their lives. Today we deliver knowledge via multi streams of ways. Whoever realizes this vast difference and develops expertise, will shine in the next years.
MO: How are you turning around the negativity that exists in Greece and viewing the crisis as a chance for development?
Jill: It’s not an easy one, especially when everybody turns to you in order to feel uplifted. My nickname is Miss Positivity after all! I do not watch TV, I stay focused on my goals, work extremely hard, constantly get feedback from my clients and colleagues and have an excellent mastermind group for support. Another practice I do every day is to share positivity by either sharing good news, or giving a sincere compliment or by helping raising money for The smile of the child the nonprofit organization Uniqueness Development Group supports. If I had to summarize I would say that I focus, work and give!
MO: If I could grant you one business related wish right now, what would you ask for?
Jill: I want to open up my channels of communication so that millions of people in Greece and in Europe start taking 100% responsibility of their lives and unlock their strengths, energy and goals. I love the events where there are 150 people and have reached the phase where I welcome bigger channels. Looking forward to living to a better place and I am sure we can do it!
Great questions thank you! Be Unique!
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