Business Inspiration Nonprofit

Kristen Hertzog Interviewed With the Speak Q Network

Business Inspiration Nonprofit PROJECTS & MISSIONS

Flexibility in the Midst of Abrupt, Unplanned Flux

I learned a lot about myself, being flexible in the midst of unexpected stress and the beautiful teamwork spirit in others last week. This confirmed my continued passion to mentor and coach people of all walks of life.

My coaching colleague, Alice Bonhomme-Biais (formerly Team Lead of Google NY) and I had planned a much anticipated coaching trip to Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Large companies, non profits, family legacy businesses were all on our much anticipated calendar. Then suddenly, due to nationwide violent political unrest, and a Travel Advisory Level 4 issued by the US Embassy, we decided to change our trip plans within 24 hours and head to Miami, Florida instead. We felt so bad for our colleagues in country, many having to close business activities for over a week due to rioting. And truthfully, we felt bad for us too. The countless hours of pre-coaching, planning and preparation, not to mention complicated trip logistics and customized seminars designed for the Haitian marketplace now needed to be put on hold – for the time being.

But, our collective professional relationships built on trust over a period of years really paid off. Our Haitian business and tech colleagues quickly connected us virtually with their trusted colleagues in the Miami area letting them know that we were on our way. This resulted in a featured Tech Teamwork seminar at prestigious Venture Cafe Miami, a coaching session with Empower Tomorrow and brainstorming session with Caroline from Caribbean Media Group and Haitian American Chamber of Commerce. We also had great introductory conversations with Dell Technologies Inc., who share our passion for positive empowerment and coaching of people. We even landed an interview with a two time Emmy award-winning producer from Speakqnetwork, the talented Reizel Larrea-Alvarez.

My Takeaway: I have to be flexible and not give in to stress when my agenda gets thrown off. I must always be prepared for opportunities to share my work and hang on for an adventurous ride! Our client base continues to grow in a brand new location we did not expect and gave us the opportunity to share our passion for business and technical coaching with others. The saying: ‘God is doing 10,000 things in your life right now and you may be aware of about 3 of them.’ really rang true for me personally and gave me renewed energy for wherever the road takes me next.

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8 Who Care: Kristen Hertzog

Tonight NBC – WGAL featured my work in Haiti in the 2018 “8 Who Care Awards”. I am one of eight winners in the region recognized for outstanding community and global service. So blessed!

Business Nonprofit

Influential Women Collaborate to Bring Power Packed Soft Skills and Software Engineering Training to Haiti and Beyond

From the moment that Alice Bonhomme-Biais and Kristen Hertzog sat down for breakfast
together at the Haiti Tech Summit in Montrouis, Haiti, they knew they were on to something
innovative. Haiti Tech Summit attracts hundreds of international leaders, entrepreneurs,
marketers and creatives interested in transforming countries like Haiti through challenges in
innovation and sustainability.

Alice, a Software Engineering Coach with 12 years of software engineering as a team leader at
Google New York and a Ph.D. in Computer Science (France), Alice has also been involved in
the Haitian Tech community for over 10 years.

“I know how to help develop and build tech teams with a culture based on software
engineering best practices, collaboration, and innovation. But companies are also asking for
high level, soft skills training or empowerment seminars to complement the tech education and
create a more holistic approach. This is not my focus area.” explains Alice.

Enter: Kristen Hertzog, a dynamic business leader and award-winning speaker with a
Leadership Coaching Strategies certificate from Harvard University and 25 years of business
experience including 10 years in Haitian development partnerships, Kristen specializes in
customized soft skills workshops and one-on-one remote executive coaching.

“Soft skills are important attributes that enable someone to effectively work with other
people. My passion is to bring a greater sense of empowerment, problem-solving, with a goal
towards healthier work environments and more effective leadership. This brings sustainable
growth within the company.” says Kristen.

Together, these influential women are joining forces to combine great technical leadership as
well as soft skills training and executive leadership. They will travel to Haiti together in
January 2019 and are currently accepting inquiries for hourly, daily and weekly seminars and
workshops, based on location, company needs, and budget.

“Although our areas of expertise are very different, what we have in common is our desire to
support Haitian entrepreneurs to build sustainable businesses. Our skills sets are so different,
yet so complimentary. Together, we can offer more to those interested in going to the next
level in their organizations.” explains Kristen.

For more information, please contact

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Thriving Within Chaos

For those of you who’ve been following me for a while know that I’m a girl who likes to wear a lot of hats: I am a coach, I’m a speaker; and I’m also an entrepreneur of a business called the Hertzog Homestead.  We have an award-winning bed-and-breakfast, a spa cottage, and an event venue. Obviously juggling all the various components of the business, sometimes things happen I can’t control. Sometimes multiple things in the same period of time happen. So we are going to talk about what to do when things are completely out of your control and how your responses affect not only you but your colleagues, your customers, your family, and your friends.

Psychotherapist Aimee Moran came up with five ways that you can help yourself when you are feeling completely out of control of a situation.

  1. Determine what you can control.
    Last week I had multiple things happen, one after the other that cost me money, time, and aggravation. I had a leak in my bed-and-breakfast that caused not only my kitchen walls to be damaged, but also my bed-and-breakfast suite and the closet. This resulted in a lot of painting and patching. I could control the painting and patching, but I couldn’t control the leak
  2. Identify your fears.
    Often times when we are feeling insecure it brings up a lot of old things that we believe about ourselves, things that are incorrect that come from an unhealthy perspective. Sometimes we as adults spend years and years refocusing our fears into something more healthy. Identify what that thing is that you are afraid of and deal with the head trash before it takes over.
  3. Concentrate on your influence.
    Concentrate on the things that you can change about the situation.
  4. Look for unhealthy coping skills in your own life.
    When someone is feeling stressed out, one person might run to the fridge, another person might open up that bottle of wine on a Thursday night, for somebody else it might be binge-watching Netflix on a Saturday. Whatever it is for you, determine what that thing is. If it is an unhealthy coping skill, even if it’s not killing, you determine if it’s really healthy or not. If you’re not sure, talk to someone in your life who loves and cares about you and is going to be honest.
  5. Develop healthy affirmations.
    Be kind to yourself. Sometimes stuff just happens; don’t beat yourself up about it, especially if you can’t fix it or it isn’t your problem in the first place. For example, last week when the kitchen wall was a disaster, I had to use this methodology myself by looking at that wall and saying I just painted that wall; it looks way better than it did a week ago when there was no leak.
    Find that positive. This is a healthy affirmation that I’m offering myself and there’s nothing wrong with that.

The next time you feel out of control, the next time something comes your way that smacks you upside the head and leaves you wondering what you are going to do with the situation, remember these five tips and try to apply them.

How do you handle times when you feel out of control? How do you deal with the lack of control in your own life?

If you are struggling with this issue, I would love to help you. You can reach me on my website at I specialize in helping people to deal with getting more out of life in business. Determining what you can control is one of many challenges that we in the workplace have to deal with so you’re not alone; there is help out there through coaching and through talking with other people.

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Teambuilding Strategies – Performance Coach Kristen Hertzog

Welcome to our show more out of life and business with Kristen Hertzog. I’m a performance coach, speaker and I’m also an entrepreneur. Today we’re going to be talking about team building. As a coach I often find
myself talking with business leaders who are asking how they can get their team to be more connected, to be more passionate, to be more empowered so that they can fulfill their mission and goals as a company. This
stuff does not come on its own. Team building bringing together people of different experiences, backgrounds, and personalities; it’s all critical and it is all strategic, so today I’m gonna give you five team-building tips for you to think about.
The very first foremost thing that you want to know is that you have to accomplish an objective; no
matter what you choose to do with teambuilding, make sure there’s an end zone. So tip number one: volunteer together; do something great that makes everyone feel good. Volunteer at a homeless shelter; take a humanitarian trip, help out at a library or a school.  Depending on your business, you can incorporate something
related to what you do to that volunteer project, but whatever it is, make sure that your people are connected to it and understand its value and understand why it’s important to do it as a team.
Number two, get active. So many of us spend time behind the desk, on the phone, or working virtually at home. Get everybody outside and get them active; have a kickball game, a softball game. You might get a few eye
rolls and you know what? That’s okay. It has been proven that to get people active actually helps people to feel
better, not only mentally, but also physically; so create new teams, fun teams. Maybe your HR department is one team and your financial team is the opposing team; whatever works for you. Get creative and get them out there active together.
Number three: play mind games. Now I don’t mean evil mind games, but I mean get everyone together into a scavenger hunt or something fun and unique that’s related to your business; maybe you just rolled out a new project or a new product. You can actually use the scavenger hunt mentality to see who can get to that end result. Maybe it has something to do with how well they were listening in their last company meeting.
Number four: let them show their creative side. Have them cook something together, build something together have a competition where there’s voting and an actual prize at the end; make it fun, make it unique, but allow people who are a little bit more creative in ways they’re not using in the workplace to shine. You might be surprised who you have in your company that has that creative or artistic edge you didn’t know about.
Number five: take your team on a field trip get them out of the norm get them off the property and let them experience something new and different. Research has shown that when people get out of their normal environment, they’re open to talking about new ideas and seeing things in a different way. One of the unique things about my coaching is that I also own a business called Hertzog Homestead. It’s an award-winning
Bed and Breakfast, event venue, and spa cottage. I want to invite you that if  you’re looking for a unique location
combined with training from an experienced coach, I have the best of both worlds all in one place. You can
check it out at the Hertzog Homestead.
How do you help your team with team-building exercises? Send me a picture or a video of what you’ve done
recently to bring your team together and I’ll share it on an episode in the future.
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Being Misunderstood – Performance Coach Kristen Hertzog

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The Importance of Mental Flexibility

Have you ever been in that moment when you are planned and prepared, and suddenly you’ve got to shift gears because whatever you were thinking wasn’t the direction that you needed to go in?

Several years ago, I was asked to present at a school in Baltimore. I was asked to share interesting things about popular culture with lots of references to keep the kids engaged. I was excited and got online to research on musicians, sports, books; things I thought the urban youth would be interesting in learning about.

It was the first time I had been to that school and as I got closer and closer to my destination, I got farther and farther out in the country and I realized I wasn’t going to a Baltimore City school, I was going to a Baltimore County school. The demographic of student is significantly different in this rural school district versus the city school I was expecting.

As I pulled up to this school, I saw tractors lined up in the front and sign that said, “Drive your tractor to school day.” The presentation, as great as I prepared it, was not going to fly at this school.

Admit When You Have to Shift Gears

One of the things I had to do with myself, is admit this is not going to work. I had to shelf that awesome presentation for another time.

Access How You Should Do It Differently

The second thing I had to do in that moment, was to access the audience – look at my audience and talk to them first before delivering that presentation. I had to figure out what they cared about… What was interesting to them… What types of popular culture I should be referencing in the presentation that followed.

Wing It With Confidence

The third thing I had to do was exude confidence. Those kids did not have to know the mental gymnastics I had gone through just a few minutes before walking in the door of that school.

I want to encourage you in your mental flexibility:

  • Admit when you have to shift gears
  • Access how you should do it differently
  • Wing it with confidence with poise and grace

And don’t forget to congratulate yourself – this isnt easy to do! How do you use mental flexiblity in the workplace? I would love to hear from you in the comments below!

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The Power of Not Giving Up

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What Story Are You Telling About Your Business? The Art of Professional Storytelling.

In this video, Kristen interviews Author and StyleOgrapher Toussant about sharing your business story. To find out more about Toussant and his work, please visit: