“In the mid-90s, on a pilgrimage in India I had an experience of inner stillness that moved me into the fullness that’s underneath my chattering mind. An important event, then and in the years that followed, in opening to what I did not already know. In those moments of slowing down I feel most connected to others, the world and myself. When I stand in front of a canvas, or spend time in another culture, it’s the unexpected that brightens the day. When with a client or group, remembering to listen to what I don’t know yet, brings the sense of connection, insight and creation that leads the way.”
Originally an architect, and graduate of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Richard left that arena in 1972 and became a founding member, trustee, teacher and fundraiser at Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health, Lenox, Massachusetts. Richard began coaching as an extension of his Exploring Your Life Mission workshops in 1997 and this immediately grew beyond ELM to a broad range of clients.
Today, Richard is an executive coach and life coach. He is a co-founder, partner, and the director of the Leadership that Works Coaching for Transformation Program, designing and delivering programs that range from an introductory to an advanced level. Coaching for Transformation began in 2005 in New York City and now is offered in India, Europe, California, and through Distance Learning. Richard has brought Leadership that Works’ coaching programs to Canada and Mexico.
Richard uses his techniques with a wide range of clients including executives and small business owners, therapists, coaches and other helping professionals. The common thread in his coaching is in-depth transformation through increasing self-awareness, self-confidence, creativity, communication skills and effective action.
As a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF), Richard has served in leadership roles in the Western New York State and Eastern Massachusetts chapter of the ICF. He has been on the Board of Directors and chair of fund raising of the Center for Collaborative Communication (CCC), formerly Brooklyn NVC. He also co-authored, Coaching for Transformation: Pathways to Ignite Personal and Social Change and authored Moments on Canvas: Paintings by Richard Michaels.
Outside of coaching and working with groups, Richard is a passionate oil painter. “Painting has been a source of inspiration, learning and satisfaction. It has altered and deepened my way of seeing and experiencing life.” Richard also enjoys seeing the world with his wife Tracy. A favorite spot of theirs is Oaxaca, Mexico where they relish the change of pace and a culture that is rejuvenating and enlightening.