Being a great leader is hard enough.

Doing it in Japan is even harder.

I help you navigate that challenge.

For Western leaders in Japan, Michael is a leadership coach who helps them thrive with sustainable high performance. Unlike traditional leadership coaches, Michael also delivers expertise on navigating Japanese business culture.

Taking on new a leadership role can be challenging. That’s because of unclear expectations, a constantly changing business environment, and unfamiliar relationships. Most leaders need to deal with these challenges when leading change in their home countries and cultures. Western leaders in Japan often face the extra challenge of doing all this while at the same time navigating a significantly different culture. And, doing it in a language they do not speak fluently.

Many Westerners in Japan view their assignments as a springboard to launch the next chapter in their careers. They also want more than career success. They want to thrive while doing it.

This means achieving your most meaningful professional goals while also enjoying the benefits of high wellbeing. People who achieve both are highly engaged in their work, use a clear sense meaning and purpose to lead themselves and have high-quality relationships at work and beyond. This is possible because they are able to meet life’s challenges with positive emotions instead of negative ones.

Traditional leadership coaches bring expertise for lifting performance and accelerating development. That’s valuable, yet it falls short of meeting the needs of Western leaders in Japan who care about their performance and their wellbeing.

Marshall Goldsmith famously said “what got you here won’t get you there.” Similarly, what got you to your Japan assignment is not necessarily what will help you get you where you want to go next in your career – whether it is in Japan or somewhere else. Successful leaders in Japan understand not only how relationships and organizations work here, but also why they work as they do. As a bilingual English-Japanese coach who works with leaders and teams from some of the largest and best-known brands in Japan, this is what Michael delivers for you.

To complement his Japanese business expertise, Michael offers clients coaching that addresses their performance, development and wellbeing needs.

Because, what’s the point of getting ahead in your career if the price you’re paying for it is unnecessary stress, anxiety, unhappiness and fatigue? Through proven performance coaching strategies, deep Japanese cultural expertise and a versatile, a research-backed operating system for mental fitness, Michael helps you take care of people, including yourself, while you take care of business.


"My purpose in life is to make well-being at work a globally-accepted, basic human right."

Michael is a Certified Leadership Coach, Organizational Development Consultant, and Facilitator.


He is based in Tokyo, speaks English and Japanese, and has worked with leaders at some of the best-known names in global business. Michael has also guest-lectured at Kyoto University and at the United States Air Force Academy. 


Michael is a Japan business specialist. His coaching focuses on helping Western leaders in Japan overcome the workplace challenges they face so they can create long-term value in performance and well-being for themselves and their organizations. He has facilitated leadership- and coaching-skills workshops for thousands of Fortune 500 professionals over the past 20 years. 


Before becoming a leadership coach and consultant, Michael served as a commercial and global functional head at leading firms including Morgan Stanley, public relations firm Burson-Marsteller (now BCW), and Dell.  


Michael earned a BA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, an MA from the University of Colorado, and an external coaching certificate from Teachers College Columbia University (C3P). He is also a Certified Coach by WBECS, a Certified Trainer by The Ken Blanchard Companies®, and an active member of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan.

(read Michael's full bio)


As your partner in learning, Michael's approach centers on equipping you with the insights, knowledge and skills you need to take near-term actions that lead to long-term value for yourself and others. You can expect Michael to hold space for you to think, reflect, dialogue, experiment, and grow your capabilities. He will listen carefully to what you say and honor you in your process, and he will also exercise straight talk and constructively challenge you in his service of supporting you as you navigate towards your goals.


Is Michael the right coach for me?

Michael works primarily with Western leaders in Japan, who:

  • seek a healthy balance between taking care of people, including themselves, while also taking care of business.
  • need to deliver success on high-profile initiatives that require buy-in and commitment from their Japanese colleagues.
  • face challenges facilitating large-scale change.
  • want to boost their team's effectiveness but have difficulty understanding what obstacles are and how to remove them.
  • are finding it unexpectedly difficult to maintain the same high level of performance and wellbeing they had before coming to Japan.

What leaders say about Michael

"Michael is one of the best professional coaches I had the privilege to work side-by-side with." Christina Dacauaziliqua, Executive Director at Morgan Stanley

"Michael was invaluable in helping me gain greater clarity and focus on key aspects of creating the future for my business. His 4-month program was flexible enough to take me out of my comfort zone, yet structured enough to ensure I got a set of actionable initiatives to implement over the course of a one- and five-year plan. I'm still implementing the plan but already seeing significant results thanks to our work together." Scott Milano, Managing Director at Tanj

"Michael helped me transition successfully into my current role as a member of my company’s leadership team. As I newcomer, I needed to build strong relationships with a staff of high-performing veteran employees, some of whom were initially resistant to my leadership. I had a breakthrough experience that made it possible for me embody the mindset and behaviors of a truly inclusive leader. Through my work with Michael, people on my team now tell me they feel empowered and energized, and the quality of team’s work together is reaching new heights." – Vice President, Durable Goods Manufacturer

"Michael has been a true partner to work with. Each time we had a session, Michael helped me clarify my thoughts, and that led to actions and improvements toward reaching my goal." - Sudeep Adhikari, Senior IT Director, Richemont Japan Ltd.

"My sessions with Michael helped me rediscover a potential I've long forgotten about while busy running a company. His keen observations and insights helped me clarify and define my goals for my business, as well as for myself individually." – James Hashimoto, CEO at Bridge Consulting


Schedule a free 25-minute consultation. The conversation acts as a check to make sure Michael is the right coach for you. We will also talk about what you want to achieve through coaching, the coaching process, the length of your coaching program, fees and specifics about the coaching sessions.