No sales pitches and no fluff. Just a thought-provoking dialog with Karla that will help you solve a challenge you're having right now.

If you haven't watched Karla's introductory video, explaining her philosophy and techniques, you may watch it here:

Who is Karla Robertson?

Down through the centuries, humans have come to understand their world, themselves and each other through the telling of stories. It's how our brains are actually wired to grasp concepts and meaning. So here's my story... or at least a brief version.

A dyed-in-the-wool New Jersey girl, I was born and raised here in the Garden State. My sister and I were fortunate enough to be raised by parents who gave us enough space to grow and fail forward, making sure we understood the lessons learned. They set certain boundaries but most of all were a great blend of creativity and groundedness which encouraged me to challenge my mind, body and spirit. And I did.

Growing up in our home was like living in the United Nations building: We must have had just about every nationality, race, and religion represented by the fascinating people who walked through our door and ate at our table. Sharing our stories with each other and laughing made a lasting impression. (Humor is in my DNA from both parents.) We were not rich people but I always felt wealthy because of these experiences. It was fabulous. I speak french and spanish and know a handful of words in about 7 other languages. Though fluency in any of those languages eludes me, I take comfort in knowing that I could be dropped into most of the world and would not starve.

I'm a resourceful and somewhat risk-taking type. Every job I went for and landed had an element of stretch in it. Translation: I wasn't exactly qualified or I was short on actual experience. Still, that didn't stop me from excelling at every company at which I worked. In 1999, I opened my own business, The Karla Factor, LLC t/a Shifting Gears®. I love to laugh, travel, find cool places to eat, experience new things, learn, and be with people smarter than I am. Mostly, I am dedicated to being in service to others. Another gift from my parents who taught by example that this was the central quality of a life well-lived.

Over the years, I've developed an ability to connect disparate pieces of information into new ways of seeing a situation, product or relationship. I'm a synthesizer. I notice subtext and context. I read people well. And I have no end of ideas. So, when I was considering leaving the world of being an employee and moving toward owning my own business, there was this golden thread that stood out illuminating the central theme and it was this: I'm highly adept at igniting insight, personal growth and action by challenging the way people think.

This is how I came to be an executive coach. This is not what I do. This is a big part of who I am.

Being fiercely committed to seeing my clients achieve their goals is blended with my relentless candor and humor. I will stand toe-to-toe with my clients and always give them the straight shot. I am direct and compassionate in my delivery and empathetic and collaborative in my interactions always with a line of sight to what my client's vision of success is.

If you are looking for my credentials and accomplishment-oriented information about me, here you go:

Before becoming an executive coach, I spent 12 years in sales where I was ranked #1 in the country for six consecutive years at one of America's largest mortgage companies. At this company, I also breathed new life into existing programs through innovation and expert implementation. I then shifted industries and achieved similar results as a sales executive with a leading pharmacy benefit management company. I initiated a task force and led a team to recraft and implement a new sales message and process. This new approach was the driving force that boosted sales and played a major role in reclaiming this company's place as a dominant player in their industry.

Working as the executive's neurocoach over 17 years. I have been alongside executive leaders challenging how they think about driving change, improving their leadership presence, building better thinkers in their teams and achieving the results they seek.

Speaking to people in small or large groups is a passion of mine and I am known to be a thought-provoking and motivational force as an executive coach, speaker and meeting facilitator.  I am an active volunteer wish-grantor for The Make-A-Wish Foundation of NJ and have co-chaired several successful fundraising events for this charity. I am also past board member of the New Jersey Professional Coaches Association and a past board member of Choral Chameleon, an extraordinary, rising, innovative choral ensemble based in NYC. Bringing out a bit of  the "Oprah" in me, I was host of my own internet-based talk show. That was a blast! (and I learned a lot.)

 In 2015, I published my first book, The Agile-Minded Executive: Drive Better Results By Shifting How You Think. It was quite a journey and thrilling to hear how people have found one or two nuggets that have made a huge difference for them in their lives personally and professionally. It has become the platform for me to be engaged by organizations as a keynote speaker in front of senior executives to challenge them to rise above and lead beyond circumstances making better decisions that lead to the best possible results. I talk about how to weather the storms of life and how to actually use the power of them to not only survive but thrive.

What replenishes my energy tanks is staying fit and working out and what really does it for me is traveling to interesting and beautiful locales to meet and mingle with the people while learning about their culture and taking in the food and the sights. One of my favorite places is Sedona, AZ where I love to hike every day among the red rocks with all the energy, peacefulness and simple beauty it offers.

The best is yet to come!