Digitalizing Intercultural Coaching – Hype or Hip?


In 2018 I wrote an article called “Digitizing Your Intercultural Coaching Practice – Ten Steps to a Digital, Global Coaching Practice” which was published in in the SIETAR Europa Journal. Since the publication, I have made further progress and hope to be able to answer your questions on how to deliver digital, intercultural coaching and what it actually means for your business model as a coach, trainer or consultant. Many of the lessons learned work for consulting as well. You probably don’t know this but I spend a large junk of my week working as a Global Mobility Project Manager inside companies. Due to the Pandemic I currently work from home and only go to the client when it is absolutely necessary. Our living room has been converted into a spaceship that could easily compete with the Millenium Falcon. We divided the space in three sections: Eat, Work, Play. Who would have thought that I could convert my “practice” into a fully digital operation in just two years. The only issue I am still struggling with today is that I am using the printer too much. 

Most executive and business coaches I know prefer to work face-to-face with their clients. This is usually possible because classical coaching happens within the same city and like with a therapist a client builds a relationship with a coach over a relatively short period of time to follow certain goals. However, a lot of coaches are passed on between clients based on good old word of mouth. It’s not really a topic you openly write a review about on LinkedIn. Hence, I find it hard to ask my clients to write an honest review. I feel it breaches our confidentiality agreement. 

Digital Intercultural Coaching still is new in the Swiss market. I’ve been running a coaching practice since 2012. My clients are all international and they are all busy global people.

In the early days of my business, I used to travel to a client in Basel for two hours for a 1.5-hour coaching session. I sometimes coached up to 15 clients in one week. That was the maximum I could manage with a good distribution of hours, without exhausting myself completely and with a good quality for the clients. Despite having a 60-hour workweek my income had dropped to one-third of what I had made as a Global Mobility Leader earlier. I know that you have to accept a loss of income in your first two years as a founder but I was not making enough money to survive. I am the breadwinner in the family and Zurich is one of the most expensive cities in the world. The cost of running a physical practice was eating up a lot of the earnings so in 2018 together with my wise accountant we decided to digitalize as much as possible.

In addition to corporate seminars, I offer a job search support group through HireMeExpress and the one-week RockMeRetreat. (Before Corona this was all possible offline, now we needed to reconsider and we offer many programs online via Zoom as well.)

If you want to build a coaching model with potential to scale you need to adopt digital practices in order to serve more clients in a shorter time frame. I had experimented with Skype coaching and other online methods already and I figured out that a lot of my methods would work online too.

The 10-Step Plan to a sustainable Digital, Global Coaching Practice

Step 1: Understand Your Ideal Client

You are not in business for yourself. If you don’t work with a client as in a person who is willing to pay for your services you probably have a hobby. Before you think about your positioning in the market, you should know what your ideal client looks like and how she or he lives and works. It’s a good idea to write a story about your ideal client.

Step 2: Have a Profile on LinkedIn

You need to have an authentic online presence. Even if you work as a freelancer you need to be able to show your qualification and approach online, you need to be able to connect with clients and potential colleagues online. At a minimum you should have a good and solid LinkedIn profile. We have several articles on how to improve this and LinkedIn has courses on it as well. 

Step 3: Own a Mobile-Friendly Website

If your website dates back to 1990 and is not mobile-friendly you should invest in making it mobile friendly. You could easily have a WordPress or google site without investing a lot of money.

Step 4: Work from Home

One advantage of a digital coaching practice is that your practice becomes location-independent. If you now think that you can work from coffee shops and the beach I would say that yes, in principle that is possible. You will still want to take calls from clients but you might be able to have those during specific hours of the day when you are in a disturbance-free area.

If you can work from home without feeling distracted this is your chance to move to the mountain hut you had dreamed about. However, in my experience, you can get lonely quite easily. I prefer to work in the city of Zurich so I can engage in offline networking and still offer physical meetings with my clients when they are close to my office.

You will need a reliable Internet connection in order to hold Skype or Zoom calls. It’s worthwhile to invest in good headsets and a comfortable office chair.

Step 5: Work with an Email Marketing Provider

It took me a long time to figure out the best tools and media for sharing my messages with my clients and readers. I read a lot of blogs and reports and I curate content and events for my readers. They spend time reading interesting posts or watching relevant videos instead of digging through the social media circus. I always enjoyed sharing interesting content and now I use this skill professionally. 

It’s important to understand that despite social media marketing you still need to build an email list with your own clients and prospects. I recommend a two-list approach. One list is for everyone who is vaguely interested in what you do. This is the where you let people join when they sign up on your website for free. In my view, it is mandatory that you have such a sign-up option. In WordPress, you could start with Magic Action Box for example.

You should also have a list of paying clients. This list is important for your targeted marketing campaigns. It’s also possible to “segment” lists if you have several programs to advertise.

Step 6: Invest in tech and your user platform

We developed our own web application called RockMeApp so we could run sessions without the use of paper and in parallel to an online session. Clients can enter their coaching targets and I can follow their weekly progress. There are platforms out there offering similar options but you can obviously not influence their layout and design. If you are just starting you might want to work as a sub-provider first and invest in your own technology later, when you have a better understanding what is out there.

Step 7: Focus on Selected Social Media Channels

I could spend all day on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Youtube. So, I have hired a DIGITAL MEDIA MANAGER to help me. The main reason is that I want to focus on writing content and creating rather than sharing and discussing. With good organization I believe you can spend less than two hours a day on social media.

My advice is that you focus on the channel that speaks to your ideal client the most. I assume that most of my clients hang out on LinkedIn and this platform also serves for connecting clients and contacts with each other. Also, I often find inspiring articles there by following the hashtags I work with. 

Step 8: Organize with a Shared Cloud Drive and Master Sheets

One of the challenges of today is that we all share everything. It is more difficult to find what you need especially if the documents are not tagged correctly. I use a system where I try to sort all my work according to event date because I have a lot of events. I also use names and tags on my documents.

As a shared drive, I work with Google Drive because it allows me to share work with my global, virtual team without having to send emails back and forth. It also works with corporate clients if they use Google Drive. In order to keep overviews of projects and tasks, I developed very simple master sheets in Google Sheets. I like to use sheets as I can post a link (URL) to the relevant document or website there.

We are also using SLACK for our team to message each other and keep track of progress. However, for me (probably because I am Gen X) a simple spreadsheet is a lot easier to work with.

Step 9: Clarify your Purpose and Pivot

One of my main enjoyments in having my own company next to working with incredible Expats, Expat Spouses and Global Mobility Managers is the fact that I have the time and capacity to write and edit. I have been pretty good at maintaining a weekly blog called the “Global People Club Sandwich”. I regularly get requests for guest posts and together with collaborators my company has published two workbooks in different formats and editions. A third workbook “The Global Rockstar Workbook” is in the making.

I am considering a pivot for Global People Transitions into a publishing company, which will develop digital tools for global people in intercultural transitions. However, at the moment I still have a lot to do to fulfil my mission to “bring the Human Touch back into Global Mobility”. Hence, the publishing company probably has to remain a side business in 2021 as well.

Step 10: Use Paper as a Strategy

As mentioned my final step to full digitalisation will be to reduce all the paper in the office. In order to do that, I do not allow myself a large quantity of printing paper in the office. I try to have flyers and seminar presentations and folders printed by professional printing companies in order to be more environmentally conscious.

One of the issues is that I seem to need paper to remember information better. So now I use paper as a strategy, for example, to write “morning pages” or “have-done-lists”. I use paper to write my coaching notes.

To avoid printing, I use “print to .pdf” as a default on my printer and I work on a big screen in my home office so I can reduce the necessity to print.

I have noticed that if I cannot read a document online it might be because they were formatted for print. In that case, it helps to go back to the original source and check if the same article has an online version.

Kind regards

Angie Weinberger

PS: Usually our readers are Expats and Expat Partners. If you aspire to be a digital nomad with a coaching, training or consulting business and you enjoyed this article, please sign up here for more.

The Digital Nomad – Part 1

A chocolate croissant and cup of coffee

The Digital Nomad could be a Company of One

Paul Jarvis is the author of the book “Company of One”  and one of my favorite creators. After reading his book, I finally got confirmation that all I had done over the last 10 years as an entrepreneur was not completely wrong. Instead of founding a “scalable startup” I had a “company of one”. And I believe that scaling is possible in my business. However, if I want to continue to stay aligned with my mission of bringing the human touch back into Global Mobility, I cannot scale, automate and robotize everything.

“Au contraire…” (you need to say this with a glass of Rosé in your hand), I really believe that Paul Jarvis hit the nail right in. There are companies who can and should stay small because otherwise, they might lose their special “umpf”. And you know what I noticed? This is not a question of what kind of business you have right now. It’s more about where you are heading.

If you are also dreaming about leading a digital nomad life where you can live in the Italian countryside near a vineyard, spend the summer at Lake Constance, Germany, fall on Long Island, the winter in Kashmir or Cochin, and a lot more time in between with your elderly family members, then my friend you need to start to take action now.

Go Digital or Go Home?

When I decided to go fully digital in 2018 I knew that I would need to take turns and that this will not happen from one day to another. What I hadn’t anticipated was that I actually am quite old-school and that I prefer human interaction over online interaction. I also noticed that the more I work online, the more I feel a need to write stuff on Post-it notes and use paper to organize myself. For example, I used a Kindle a few years ago. This year during my vacation, I had it with me, but I preferred to read paper books. I journal in a diary and I only use my laptops for calls and managing my business. I’m taking handwritten notes on an Ipad, as this way I seem to better work with the right side of my brain.

However, the main idea to have a digital business that I could run from anywhere has been magnified by the corona crisis. Still, the main reason that keeps me in one city right now is my personal and professional network and that a basic income needs to be made every month. 

I think Paul is right. Obviously, it depends on your business model and if you are a creator, an artist, or a programmer.  I love the creative part of my business, but over the last few years I also always had to have enough “billable” time to make a living in one of the most expensive cities in the world. 

My friends in corporate are all wealthier now than I am and I have doubted myself a lot. I’m still not sure how I will manage to survive during my retirement. You might think now that I’m exaggerating and maybe you think that it can’t be that difficult with all my contacts and all the income streams that I have created. You might be right. However, I live in a very security-oriented environment and Swiss and German cultures are not very entrepreneurial. It’s more common to be employed and have a good career to make a good living. What I want is to also have a life where I feel that all my potential is utilized. After leaving the corporate career track I wanted to fully be myself and follow my passion of creative writing. Also, I want to help more people and have a bigger impact, especially on Rainbow Talent around the world. 

For me, the best way to get out of the negativity spiral is through continuous education, ongoing learning, coaching, and mastermind groups. Usually, I am growing when I am implementing new technology or improving programs or just seeing faster progress with my clients because I could show them a hack. I buy into organic growth because it allows me to maintain my quality standards. In the corporate world, I often see a lot of back-and-forth and low-quality products. This is not what I want to create with my team. We create experiences and positive learning environments. 

Know How Much Is Enough

As I’ve been following Paul’s work for a while I have been asking myself the “enough” question a lot. You probably heard me say this before, but my relationship with money completely changed when I became an entrepreneur. I would say that I need only 60% of the monthly income that I needed when I was employed. The main reason, aside from lowering my base costs, is that I feel a lot more satisfied with my life since I started my business. Helping you directly makes me happy. I love my work. I don’t need shoes, handbags, suits, or other material stuff to feel happy. I just am.

Paul Jarvis asks three questions: How much is enough? How will I know when I got there? What will change if I do?

He explains how he maintains a minimalist lifestyle and how this helps him to save and reinvest while also allowing him to take extended offline periods over the summer and winter. I’m working on getting better at taking these long breaks as well. Actually, I am on a bit of a longer travel and nomad period right now and making new experiences. I have managed to spend a lot more time with my family in Germany since the Pandemic and even though I do not take long time off work I am in a lot of different places. For me, this is more inspiring than working remotely from home most of the time.

Get Your Finances in Order

I translated this into ongoing questions on what I would like to achieve financially in my business and when we are there it will help to have a buffer as well. My minimum income is 60k CHF gross. This allows me to survive, not necessarily thrive and the minimum turnover is around 140k CHF. You might need to calculate this for yourself, but interestingly enough the minimum salary is exactly what has been determined as a substance for people living in Switzerland. I usually say that you should have 100k CHF in the bank before starting a business full-time. At the time I started mine, I needed this buffer to get through the first few years. Later on, I would find regular income mainly through consulting projects, interim mandates, and classroom lectures or workshops. 

Now, these are usually on-site so they won’t fit a long-term digital nomad strategy. So for me, the last question is easily answered: Once I have enough income to stop working on-site on consulting projects and I have a buffer I will be able to move around more in the world.

I want you to start thinking like a CEO. What could you do if you had your business that you can’t do right now? What kind of freedom would this business give you?

We will shortly publish “The Global Rockstar Album, ” a self-help book for managers and nomads who want to bring purpose, performance, and productivity to their work while becoming more inclusive servant leaders. Sign up here to be invited to the book launch party in Zurich, Switzerland, and learn more about the publication.

A New Year with a New Way of Starting it.


Jarvis, P. (2019): Company of One.

“Company of One”



Global Relocation Checklist_10_2020_Weinberger Angie 2020_1

Blogs and Podcasts


Other Articles in this Series and Related Content

The Digital Nomad – Part 5 – Which Channels to use in Order to be a More Effective Global Digital Nomad
The Digital Nomad – Part 4 – How to be a Global Digital Coach, Consultant ot Trainer
The Digital Nomad – Part 3 – Improve Your Productivity Kanban-Style – Global People Transitions
The Social Media Newbie Part 3 – Global People Transitions

Digital Expat Coaching for Global Rockstars via the RockMeApp

Digital Expat Coaching for Global Rockstars via the RockMeApp

Are you a Global Mobility Manager or Recruiter looking to enhance coaching for your international population and your team? Look no further! Our Global People Coaching via RockMeApp is here to revolutionize the Expat Experience. 🌟

🌟 What is the RockMeApp?

It’s a cutting-edge digital coaching platform designed to help you thrive, whether employed or self-employed. With a secure, private web-based application, it facilitates seamless communication between coaches and clients. Say goodbye to feeling lost in your career transition!

🌟 Meet Our Experts

Usama Hafeez and Angie Weinberger bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the RockMeApp. Our academic research and over ten years of expat coaching practice ensure you’re in capable hands. Usama Hafeez’s commitment to security guarantees the confidentiality of your conversations.

🌟 Why Use the RockMeApp?

  • We help your internationally mobile population feel better and be more productive.
  • We bridge a gap in Global Mobility planning and between organizational silos such as Global Mobility and Talent Development.
  • We bring the Human Touch back into your journey in a rather fragmented industry with a highly outsourced workforce and a high level of technological support.
  • We use technology for enhanced support and expat mental health and well-being.
  • We also provide a coach for the Global Mobility Managers and Recruiters because we all need guidance and often we don’t have sparring partners in our companies.

🌟 How Can You Work With Us?

If you’re a small or medium-sized business with an Expat Population of up to 20 Global People (the Global Mobility Team may also join) we are ready to support you with our coaching and communication services. Let us know the size of your expat population, and we’ll tailor an offer to meet your needs. Join the movement and take your Global Mobility to the next level with the RockMeApp! 

Available RockMeApp Licences



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Expatriate Family License – 12 months Small Population License – 12 months Medium Population License – 12 months Large Population License – 12 months
One expat and their partner up to 10 expats and expat partners up to 20 expats and expat partners More than 20 expats and expat partners
Unlimited coaching with Coach Angie Unlimited coaching with Coach Angie Unlimited coaching with Coach Angie  Unlimited coaching with Partners (under the supervision of Coach Angie)
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Communication and Registration via RockMeApp

All coaching client communication goes through our secure and safe RockMeApp. We have built an interactive, highly secure coaching platform where the Expat or Expat Spouse and the Global Mobility Coach work together on achieving learning goals, weekly practices, and overall career goals. Career coaching is particularly advisable during the transition to the host country and about six months before repatriation.

Our Expat Helpline

Expats and their Spouses have all sorts of life and other challenges. In many organizations, they will not know who to talk to. We offer a helpline where they can address all questions and a research team in the background that will help them with qualified responses. Responses that will not require them to search through fake news and badly researched content on the Internet. We also have great resources on our blog and additional handouts we can send to your Expats and their Spouses.

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Prevent Family Separation

Expat Spouse employment Bringing the family on board in global mobility Expat Family Support

Prevent Family Separation in Global Mobility

Stop me if you have heard this before. Still, the general belief among people seems to be that separation rates among expatriates are higher than those among native (aka stay-at-home) professionals. I want to point out that this is not the case. The reality is that this idea comes from the fact that the impacts of family separations are much more significant. Consider the difficulty of handling separation and potential custody disputes through geographical boundaries. Discussion among multinational Global Mobility circles is centering on the issue of Dual-Career Expat Couples. 

Why You Need To Care About This

You may be wondering how their relationships and related problems impact businesses. The answer is simple: 

People would choose to leave their international assignment to save their marriages or, as one Partner in one of my former GM Leader roles once said, “Happy Wife, Happy Life.”

A McKinsey study shows that 70% of expat assignments fail, meaning the position gets vacated, and companies have to spend extra money to replace and train personnel, meaning their growth slows down.  Businesses, therefore, have a vested interest in seeing these relationships succeed. 

To get the professionals’ perspective, research conducted by PwC found that most employees listed the spouse’s career as a barrier to mobility. 

Many would not choose to disrupt their spouse’s established careers and move them to another country.

Reports from Crown and Brookfield pointed out that family challenges of international relocation remain a top reason for assignment refusal and failure. At the same time, a growing body of anecdotal evidence suggests that many expatriate marriages often fail at massive cost to organizations (McNulty, 2015). Nearly 70% of expatriates and their spouses reported “marital breakdown” as the most crucial reason relocations fail (Lazarova et al., 2015; Lazarova & Pascoe, 2013). 

The reasons for Expatriate Failure are usually not well captured. There is a data hole here, and we must assume that family reasons are a significant reason for expatriate failure rates. This lack of data needs to be addressed shortly as the importance of this issue rises, as a recent survey from Mercer highlights. According to the NetExpat and EY Relocation Partner Survey, 71% of the companies surveyed claim that Expat Spouse’s unhappiness is the primary reason for Expatriate Failure. 

In light of all these findings, improving spouse and family assistance as well as spouse career support clearly needs to feature at the top of the list of challenges and priorities of Global Mobility programs.

Regarding Expatriate Failure rates, one example that I tend to criticize is that assignments often end prematurely because of business considerations, expats accepting a new role in a new location, or ending school years. However, the project was still a success. 

The current definition of Expatriate Failure would categorize such an assignment as a “failure.” 

In contradiction to “Expatriate failure,” “Expatriate Adjustment” is used as a common way to measure the “success” of an international project and is often equalized with carrying out the assignment during the assigned period.

There isn’t a quick or easy solution to this issue, especially with the data hole present. Let us look at possible solutions to this issue, how to improve the Expat Experience (XX) for your spouse or life partner, and how best to handle the problem in case the worst outcome becomes inevitable.

Besides Expat Spouse’s career, KPMG identified another main demographic reason that leads employees not to take up an international assignment: sexual orientation. 

In 2018, only 40% of the companies they surveyed had Diversity and Inclusion objectives as part of their Global Mobility strategy, while only 20% had actually planned to review their policies after reassessing the demographics of their globally mobile employees based on diversity. 

Additionally, excluding gender, other points such as ethnicity, age, religion, and disability status have not yet been captured in the global mobility space. 

Like in most of today’s international companies, you have probably come to recognize the proven benefits of a diverse and inclusive workplace. However, if you are in a same-sex relationship, the reality of Global Mobility can be complex. Even if your Global Mobility Manager is open, you could face immigration challenges and prejudice in the host country.

How do we Define Expat Spouse?

As most countries require you to be legally married to enter their borders, I will also use the term Expat Spouse for life partners. Also, this term applies to all genders and same-sex relationships. For clarity, the gender-neutral ‘spouse’ is the expatriate’s life partner, and the word is also commonly included in contracts and policies for international assignments. We will also use the time Expat Couple. For further definitions and terminology, consult “The Global Mobility Workbook”(2019).

What you can do: Eight  Ideas to Avoid Family Separation on Your Expat Assignment

1 – Involve Your Spouse 

You (the Expat) must appreciate and contribute in any way possible to not let your Expat Spouse compromise their career. Many Expat Spouses can probably relate to the experience of living in a country that is not always of their choosing. 

Often, they also have very high professional qualifications and years of solid work experience behind them. Suddenly though, they are left without any employment despite real efforts to find work and might even struggle to have their degrees recognized in the new country. 

The most crucial point here is that you involve your Expat Spouse in the decision-making process from the beginning, not only when the moving truck pulls up the driveway.

2 – Understand Immigration

Many countries do not automatically grant the right to work to the Expat Spouse. You need to check if your company will support your Expat Spouse with obtaining a work permit. You can check the host country’s immigration websites for initial guidance.

3 – Support as long as necessary 

Assist your spouse in getting a job or starting their own business by being financially supportive. You can agree on a temporary loan so they don’t feel dependent on you. Discuss the financial situation during the assignment and what it will mean for their old-age pension and other saving plans they might have. Make sure you aren’t troubling them by overemphasizing.

4 – Spend Quality Time Together

A new place can feel daunting and scary, often lonely. Spend quality time with your spouse so they don’t feel alone in a new place. Plan weekends away to learn the positives about living in a new culture, not just daily life. Explore the new culture and meet other people to build a network of friends fast.

5 – Consider Joining A Support Group

Joining a support group of people going through similar experiences can also guide your Expat Spouse in adjusting to change. Several online and physical communities around the world are worth looking into. And when it comes to Switzerland alone, the choice is large: from the well-known Internations to Expatica and from the Zurich Spooglers to the Hausmen of Basel, the opportunities to connect with fellow Expats and Expat Spouses in the country are plenty.

6 – Help Your Spouse In Finding Volunteer Work 

In Switzerland, a lot of associations depend on volunteers. Search for English-speaking groups your Expat Spouse could support, like SINGA Switzerland or Capacity Zurich. If you have children, you can also help international schools and kindergartens. Generally, this is easier done by joining parent associations like the ones at the Zurich International School or the Inter-Community School Zurich.

7 – Give them a Coaching Voucher for a Session with Angie Weinberger – Expat Coach

We have a lot of experience helping clients mend their broken relationships. One session can help shift the Spouse’s mindset from victim to self-reliant, strong, and active professional. You can also buy “The Global Career Workbook” (2016).

8 – Step Back For The Next Career Move of your Spouse

Even though this one idea is pretty self-explanatory, it is hard to do in practice, especially if your income is a lot higher than the income of your Spouse. Take turns in whose career is leading the decision for the next assignment. That means stepping back when it is your spouse’s turn to advance in their career.


Top 10 Tips for a Killer Linkedin Profile



Black, S. J., Mendenhall, M. E., Oddou, G. (1991). „Toward a Comprehensive Model of International Adjustment: An Integration of Multiple Theoretical Perspective”, The Academy of Management Review, DOI: 10.2307/258863

Bruno, Debra. (2015, March 18). „Divorce, Global Style: for Expat Marriages Breaking Up is Harder to Do”, The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved April 29, 2020, from

KPMG. (2018). „Inclusion and Diversity in Global Mobility”, KPMG. Retrieved April 30, 2020, from

Hsieh, T., Lavoie, J. & Samek R. (1999): „Are you taking your Expatriate Talent seriously?”, The McKinsey Quarterly. Retrieved April 29, 2020, from

Lazarova, M., McNulty, Y. & Semeniuk, M. (2015). „Expatriate family narratives on international mobility: key characteristics of the successful moveable family”, in Suutari, V. and Makela, L. (Eds), Work and Personal Life Interface of International Career Contexts, Springer, Heidelberg, pp. 55-76. 

Lazarova, M. & Pascoe, R. (2013). „We are not on vacation! Bridging the scholar-practitioner gap in expatriate family research”, in Lazarova, M., McNulty, Y. and Reiche, S. (symposium organizers), ‘Moving Sucks!’: What Expatriate Families Really Want (and Get) When They Relocate, Symposium at 2013 US Academy of Management Annual Meeting, Lake Buena Vista, FL.

McNulty, Y. (2015). „Till stress do us part: the causes and consequences of expatriate divorce”. Journal of Global Mobility, vol. 3, no. 2, pp. 106–136.

McNulty, Y., Selmer, J. (2017): Research handbook of expatriates.

Weinberger, A. (2019a): „The Global Mobility Workbook, “Third Edition, Global People Transitions, Zurich.  

Weinberger, A. (2019b): „The Use of Digital Intercultural Coaching with Expats and Implications for Transition Plans in Global Mobility”, Master’s thesis, The Institute for Taxation and Economics, Rotterdam, from

The Red Couch Talks

Angie Weinberger preparing for a Red Couch Talk

The Red Couch Talks

I’m inviting exciting people to an interview on the Red Couch. ​I started this video series as an experiment in 2022 on YouTube for International Women’s Day and was mainly promoting female leaders. I’m opening it up to everyone. My idea is to ask you only about five to six questions and then post ​​them on YouTube. I’m learning to interview people so I can eventually have a podcast. I’m using my red couch because this is ​​the only piece of furniture we‘ve had since I was eight, and it’s been around the block. It’s almost falling apart, to be honest, but ​it’s my happy place where I can chill. 

My Red Couch Talk with Monica Shah

Monica Shah Zeeman has been working with international families for twenty years to support their lives abroad. I met her at ETH the renowned federal university in Zürich, Switzerland where she had moved with her family. Monica is the founder of Children First which offers early schooling and a tutoring center for students in Swiss schools. She is a child development specialist with an unusual background in social entrepreneurship. She first worked in Bern as an Assistant Headteacher at the da Vinci Academy. I discovered when I invited her today that after graduating from Oxford University the first charity she founded was part of a network of community education charities across the UK one of which became the first Academy school in the UK, in East London. She has a psychoanalytic diploma and launched a counseling service for mothers with babies called the Mothering Project in north London. Her textbook ‘Working with Parents’ was published by Heinemann in 2001 before she moved to Switzerland. In Zurich she gives talks on Choosing the best school for your child and parenting Multilingual Children, is the President of Circle of Schools and you can find some of her writing as well as other interesting articles on the Family Matters Switzerland website. Monica lives in Zurich, Switzerland.



Family Matters Switzerland

Monica Shah
Monica Shah

My Red Couch Talk with Brian Padilla

Brian Padilla currently serves as Vice President, Human Resources Business Partner for Lionsgate Entertainment. In his role, Brian leads strategic HR Business Partnerships across Lionsgate’s Television Businesses, which include Scripted and Unscripted Television Production, and Worldwide Television Distribution. Brian also leads Production HR, which services Lionsgate’s slate of active television and motion picture productions. Prior to joining Lionsgate, he held progressive roles in HR at companies such as Miramax, Creative Artists Agency, and NBC Entertainment. 

Brian holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of Massachusetts’ College of Liberal Arts, a Master of Music in Voice Performance from Roosevelt University’s Chicago College of Performing Arts, and an Executive Master of Professional Studies in Human Resource Management from Cornell University’s School of Industrial & Labor Relations. Brian is an avid supporter of live classical music and an amateur pianist. He currently resides in the Los Angeles area.


Brian Padilla
Vice President, Human Resources Business Partner | Lionsgate Entertainment


My Red Couch Talk with Flavia Augusta de Almeida

Flavia Augusta de Almeida is a British-Brazilian language coach fluent in seven languages, with English and Portuguese as her two mother tongues. Having resided in five different countries, including Switzerland, her exposure to diverse cultures began during their university years in the USA, where she studied architecture and concurrently worked as an English teacher, English-Portuguese translator, and English-Spanish interpreter.

Following Flavia Augusta de Almeida’s academic pursuits, she accumulated over 16 years of experience in corporate architecture before relocating to Basel. While in Basel, she decided to amalgamate her corporate expertise with teaching skills, earning certification as an English instructor. Drawing from her personal foreign language learning journey, passion for languages, academic training, and professional teaching background, she established “faa Language Coaching”.

Specializing in instructing adults for effective communication through language development and cross-cultural training in English, Flavia also offers guidance for English examinations such as the Cambridge Certificate and TELC. Additionally, she assists clients proficient in English to enhance spoken clarity through accent-neutralization techniques.

You find her on:






My Red Couch Talk with Barbara Hesse

Having called Switzerland home for over 13 years, Barbara Hesse decided to embrace a new journey after spending a substantial amount of time in the Corporate World. Motivated by a genuine love for people, presentations, and her impact, she took the leap into self-employment. In the Big Four corporate setting, Barbara found her niche for over two decades, specializing in proposals and supporting colleagues in showcasing the added value and client benefits, extending her reach to presentations. During this corporate journey, Barbara recognized and empathized with the insecurities that often lingered. Her response was compassionate and proactive—she initiated internal training programs to create a positive shift. The joy and success experienced in this endeavor became a driving force, ultimately leading Barbara to focus exclusively on this impactful work.

Homepage – Be more present




My Red Couch Talk with Sandipta Jadhav

Sandipta Jadhav, Immigration Lawyer focussed on India and German-speaking countries

Sandipta Jadhav is an Indian immigration lawyer and Global Mobility specialist with close to two decades of experience in global people transitions. She has witnessed hundreds of global aspirants immigrate to and from India and many other countries including Germany. She was born and raised amidst the bustling streets of South Mumbai, India. Central to her professional ethos is an unwavering commitment to customer experience and consistently striving to surpass expectations and craft unparalleled journeys for each valued individual she serves. She has a proven track record of success in helping individuals and organizations navigate the complex world of immigration.

You can find Sandipta Jadhav on LinkedIn.


Rajeev Ranjan

Rajeev Ranjan
Rajeev Ranjan

My Red Couch Talk with Rajeev Ranjan

Rajeev Ranjan: With over 12+ years of experience in the software industry, Rajeev has versatile business experience and an entrepreneurial attitude with a global perspective. He completed his MBA from FHWS Germany and his Bachelors from Birla Institute of Technology in India. He has worked in 15 countries on three continents (Europe, Africa, and Asia Pacific), leading and managing business activities and partnerships across diverse markets and cultures.
In his multiple roles, ranging from international sales to strategy and alliance management, he has helped enterprises transform their experiences through digital transformation by solving their current and future needs. Currently, he is associated with Newgen Software as Director of Global System Integrators Sales.

Rajeev has also been associated with leading business schools in India as a guest lecturer, such as Welingkar Institute of Business Management, JAIN (CMS),  Christ University Institute of Management, and Presidency School of Business, where he has covered topics related to Leadership, International Business, Business Marketing, Artificial Intelligence, Block Chain, Digital transformation, etc.

Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG)  is a topic close to his heart. It has been part of multiple sustainable non-profit initiatives related to skill development and education to alleviate the lives of those who need helping hands.



Doreen Cumberford

Doreen Cumberford
Doreen Cumberford

My Red Couch Talk with Doreen Cumberford

Doreen Cumberford helps globally mobile expats, digital nomads, and returnees to create happier, easier, and more successful transitions while relocating overseas. A Certified Coach, and 30-year licensed Practitioner, Doreen speaks, writes, and teaches about the principles and practices necessary to joyfully navigate mobility from cradle to grave, or from launch to landing. The author of Life in the Camel Lane, Embrace Your Adventure and Arriving Well, she is currently writing Aftermath: How To Move Home After Living Overseas.  Nomadic Diaries a Podcast, will launch in December 2023. A native of Scotland, living in 8 overseas countries over four decades on four continents has enabled her to support globally mobile communities in creating more satisfying lives and building their dreams no matter where they land.

The Nomadic Diaries Podcast



Hannele Secchia

My Red Couch Talk with Hannele Secchia

Hannele Secchia is an Adult Third Culture Kid working in global mobility and raising her own Third Culture Kids. Although her passport countries are Finland and Germany, she grew up between Ethiopia, the UK, and Kenya. When she married, she added another two countries to the mix, as her husband is South African and Italian. Hannele currently works as a leader among the expat community in Ethiopia to facilitate thriving – before, during, and after their stay. The blend of her own multicultural family, her experiences crossing cultures continually throughout her life, her heart for those who are globally mobile, and her background in HR are the perfect combination for this work. She also brings her learning from both the corporate and the non-profit sectors to bear in her current role as the President of Families in Global Transition, where she is helping to position the organization strategically for the future. She is on the brink of another big transition this coming year as she moves to Finland, where she will theoretically be a repatriate, although she does not fit that box either, never having lived in Finland!”

Hannele Secchia’s social media links are:



Families in Global Transition


Adam Brody

“Style has nothing to do with size…”

The Red Couch Talk with Adam Brody


Instagram: adambrodyzurich

Facebook: Adam Brody Zurich

Linkedin: ADAM BRODY GmbH

Angie Weinberger is The Global Mobility Coach and author of The Global Mobility Workbook (Third Edition). She is also the Founder and the Managing Director of Global People Transitions GmbH. Angie also considers herself a social media junkie and a Bollywood lover.  She was born in a small German village near Lake Constance in the 1970s and grew up in Germany. Her first “intercultural” experience was moving from the South of Germany to an area near Heidelberg, where her parents took over a children’s home. 

Curious about foreign cultures and eager to have a fully immersive experience in another culture, she moved to the UK at the age of 19 where she worked as an Au Pair for a local family. This experience taught her that there is more to living abroad than language, the experience of cultural adjustment, and that other cultures view Germans differently than she expected.

After that gap year, she returned to Germany to study International Business Studies at the University of Paderborn. Her career in Global Mobility started to take shape when she was accepted to study in Australia focussing on International Human Resources. Tasmania was the starting point of her true interest in the topic as during her thesis Angie researched Short-Term Assignees and the failures of the company which had sent them out to other countries. Being away from home and family also taught her how to make friends anywhere in the world and that she was able to keep a clean kitchen in the student dorm.

After completing her degree, she started working in Human Resources as a Global Mobility Specialist and HRBP. She experienced Expat Life when she went on assignment to India in 2006. There, she worked as an HR Project Manager supporting a large strategic outsourcing project at a global bank. Working in a growth market was an eye-opener and Angie still has very fond memories of her time in India. She became a fan of Bollywood and learned to dance and eat with her hands.

In 2007, Angie was headhunted by PwC to take on her first real Global Mobility leadership role. With PwC, she finally managed to return to her dream city Zurich where she is still based to date. Once the Swiss Global Mobility team and function were up and running, 

Angie decided to follow her long-term wish to help more Global Mobility Managers, Expats, and Expat Spouses through coaching. From her blog, she launched her company Global People Transitions GmbH in 2012. If you want to read more about how she came to make this dream come true, read her story here

Today Angie is also a Professional Certified Executive Coach, Intercultural Trainer, and Group Seminar Facilitator. As a certified Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) Qualified Administrator, Angie can run intercultural assessments for managers and staff. She combines intercultural coaching, her long-standing Global Mobility expertise, and workshop facilitation skills into programs for Global Mobility Managers, Expats, and Expat Spouses.

In her consulting work at various medium-sized and larger companies, she still experiences Global Mobility challenges every day. She is passionate about bringing out the best potential in her clients and is on a mission to bring the human touch back into Global Mobility. She is a guest lecturer at various academic institutions and teaches “Global Mobility” and “Intercultural Management” in Germany, Holland, France, and Switzerland. 

Angie regards ongoing education as highly important. To keep growing as a coach and meaningful individual, she is taking part in the Expat Coach Coalition, a special education for coaches and facilitators offered by Sundae Schneider Bean. She is a member of the Society for Intercultural Education, Training and Research in Switzerland (SIETAR CH), for which she was the Communication and Digital Media responsible between 2014 and 2017. She also lectures for the Erasmus University, ExpatiseⓇ Academy and is a member of the global Expatise Academy Advisory Board.

Her working languages are English and German, but she can also communicate in French and Spanish, understands Swiss German, and studied Arabic at a beginner level. To give back, she supports migrants and refugees as a trainer and mentor in Zurich. When Angie is not working (hard to believe!), she enjoys hiking in the Swiss or Italian countryside, watching movies, and indulging in the cooking of her Pakistani partner. She loves Bollywood, creative writing, and spending time with friends and family. Obviously, she would love to travel more and eventually become a “digital nomad”.

Angie is the author of The Global Rockstar Album – 21 Verses to Find Your Tact as an Inclusive Leader (2023), The Global Mobility Workbook (Third Edition, 2019), The Global Career Workbook (2016), a self-help job search guide for internationally mobile professionals who are undergoing a career transition in a market with which they aren’t familiar. Angie is also the Editor-in-Chief of the Global People Club Sandwich where she regularly writes and edits inspirational articles about various aspects of Global Mobility. She started her blog in 2010 and has published over 360 posts ever since. Do you want to become a reader of the Club Sandwich? Sign up here.

With the eye of attention that she usually reserves for the Expat Experience, Angie recently started a video series called “The Red Couch Talks”. You can find the previous sessions on Angie’s YouTube Channel.