Marissa Afton

The Mind of the Leader: Enhancing Leadership Performance with Mindfulness

Marissa Afton is an executive coach, seasoned change management professional and corporate consultant who supports Fortune 500 companies by developing and delivering customized, evidence-based cultural change solutions within diverse organizational environments. Marissa has led initiatives at multinational organizations spanning 4 continents, working with executive leaders, teams and individual contributors across the sectors of finance, IT, professional services, higher education, hospitality, law, oil and gas, health care and many others.

A sought-after speaker and regular contributor to industry publications, Marissa speaks at leading HR and Leadership conferences about the impact of mind training on high-performance cultures. A mindfulness practitioner for over 25 years, Marissa brings experience in executive leadership training, mindfulness in the workplace, workshop facilitation, education, human capital and performance coaching, and consultation to her role as Client Solutions Director at Potential Project.

A specialist in organizational excellence and workplace well being, Marissa is passionate about helping people realize their full potential at work through improved focus, clarity and attention. Her clients include Accenture, Aetna, Cisco, Kaiser Permanente, Kohler, KPMG, Latham & Watkins, Marriott, Moss Adams, LVMH and Pfizer, to name a few.

Her article, with Rasmus Hougaard and Jacqueline Carter, in Harvard Business Review

Her speaking programs include:

The Mind of a Leader

Mindfulness, selflessness and compassion are key leadership qualities to create high performing, people-centered organizations. This is the conclusion of research conducted with more 35,000 global leaders from companies like Microsoft, Google, Accenture, Lego, Cisco and others. Mindful leadership and the core quality of compassionate leadership is rising in the research literature- identified as an increasing topic of interest with a tangible need to demonstrate leadership potential through these virtues.

Potential Project in collaboration of Harvard Business Press have conducted one of the largest international research projects to find the most important mental qualities for 21st century leadership, with an aim to create more people-centered organizational cultures that drive business success. She will share the findings of this research, along with stories from interviews with more than 200 global executives and CEOs of Fortune 500 companies.

Getting One Second Ahead – Enhancing Leadership Performance with Mindfulness

It’s not easy being a leader in today’s fast-paced, complex, dynamic work environments. Leaders need to maintain calm in the midst of daily storms. They need to remain focused in the face of a million distractions. They need to have clarity of mind to ensure they are helping themselves and their people do the right things as opposed to just doing lots of things.

In this session, we will share stories and experiences from around the globe on how and why companies are incorporating mindfulness training as a foundational tool to support leadership performance and development.

The session will include case studies from work with leading companies including Sony, EY, Accenture and more. It will also include practical tools and techniques that participants can use and integrate into their leadership development activities to get the “One Second Ahead” advantage enabling leaders to respond as apposed the react in the face of daily busyness.

From this session, participants will get practical, tactical, information on how they can help themselves and their teams enhance effectiveness and productivity through training the mind.

Audience comments include:

“I am completely inexperienced in this area and found the session informative, practical and inspiring. Simple strategies to apply and get started.”

“Excellent session that inspired me to try and bring this into my office for my team.”

“Best session of the day. Great subject matter, great presentation, easily understand and interactive. A subject needed everywhere today.”

“Loved how interactive the session was. She definitely hit the practical piece! And the statistics were helpful so I can bring them back to my organization.”

“Fantastic, Wonderful, and an OUTSTANDING session. I am a regular meditator and I learned new tools; thank you!”