Stephanie Barros is playing a small part in helping others reach their full potential.
What’s your story?
For over 25 years I have been working in the corporate environment but recently I decided to leave and pursue my passion.
Over the course of my career I held various roles, in varying functions and multiple capacities. I was instrumental in helping individuals as well as small and large teams achieve high performance. I believe I am successful at this as the one thing that has remained constant, throughout my career and my life, is my love of helping others identify and ignite their potential. My greatest feeling of joy and sense of satisfaction comes from seeing others really go beyond even what they thought was possible. Knowing I played a small part in helping that happen is what keeps me going.
What excites you most about your industry?
As a coach, I believe the most exciting aspect is seeing other people grow and transform. Lou Holtz said, “In this world you’re either growing or you’re dying, so get in motion and grow.” To have the privilege to assist in someone else’s growth is something I do not underestimate. Today, there are more and more people wanting more out of their lives, more than just the hustle, bump and grind. As a result, more and more people are turning to coaches to help them re-ignite their spark for life and really live. For me, being able to add value to others in this way using a data driven proven program is a gift.
What’s your connection to Asia?
Although I was born in Australia, both my parents were coincidentally born in the Philippines. And whilst my mother spent her formative years in the Philippines my father spent his in Hong Kong, before both their families migrated to Australia when they were in their mid-teens. Consequently, I have always felt somewhat connected to Asia, but it wasn’t until I had the opportunity to live in Singapore with my own family that I really was able to establish a deeper understanding and connection to my cultural heritage (particularly since I had the opportunity to travel extensively throughout the region).
Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
I really loved living in Singapore and from a business perspective the Singaporean government is very pro-business. Tax rates are favourable, the ease with which you can setup and run a business combined with the overall living experience makes it an easy place to live and work.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
In the corporate world, “always try to make your role redundant.” It was great advice because it meant I was always looking for ways to continually improve the role I was doing which then almost always opened other doors and opportunities. In the entrepreneurial world, “don’t play small, you can always play a bigger game.” Which reminds me daily there is always something else I can do to add value.
Who inspires you?
Mother Teresa – her capacity for love and service was immeasurable. Something I try on an ongoing basis to emulate within my own context.
What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
“Above the senses is the mind. Above the mind is the intellect. Above the intellect is the ego. Above the ego is the unmanifested seed, the primal cause. And verily beyond the unmanifested seed is Brahman, the all-pervading spirit, the unconditioned, knowing whom one attains to freedom and achieves immortality.” (Katha Upanishad 2:3:7, 8)
Recently becoming aware of this hierarchy and learning about it has opened a much broader perspective for me. Particularly that the lesser levels can be controlled from the higher levels, thus saving a great deal of time and frustration.
If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
Leave the corporate world much sooner. Whilst I don’t believe in regrets as I believe every choice, decision, action we take provides us with the lessons we need to learn. I underestimated the level of joy I would feel in being able to pursue my passion and contribute directly by adding value to other people’s lives.
How do you unwind?
I LOVE to read! Everything and anything, I have a very eclectic reading collection. But I also love to travel and spend time experiencing different cultures. Ideally reading whilst traveling and relaxing is my idea of unwinding heaven.
Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Thailand. I love the culture, the people, the food and the breathtaking countryside.
Everyone in business should read this book:
Team Code of Honor – The Secrets of Champions in Business and in Life by Blair Singer.
It’s the secret sauce for all high performing teams, whether it be your team at work, your team at home, your sports team or just your team of one; having a Code of Honor is what makes the team stick and perform at its best.
Shameless plug for your business:
I became a Certified High Performance Coach because I am passionate about Helping YOU Ignite Your SPARK.
The High Performance Coaching process is a process created to explore all the ways you can reach heightened and sustained levels of performance and potential in all areas of your life. As a Certified Coach, my role is to work with you in this process through 5 different areas: Clarity, Energy, Courage, Productivity, and Influence.
By developing mastery in these five areas, you’ll feel more purposeful and fulfilled. The data proves it. So, as a high performance coach, I typically explore how clear you feel about your overall life and goals; whether or not you have the physical energy and mental stamina to perform at your best; how confident and bold you are showing up in the world; what distractions or poor habits cause you to fall off course, and what routines can keep you on track; in addition to what you can do to better influence, lead and inspire your family and all those you serve.
I can’t wait to work with you through this process and see you discover new beliefs, habits and tools that will help you join the world’s most successful people!
This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews
Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started,
built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.