image licensed from iStockPhoto

Transforming Managers into Global Leaders

About Kumi

KumiKobayashiKumi grew up in a tea farm of Uji (south of Kyoto). She moved to Bay Area at the age of 25 and lived there for 13 years, then in Woodstock, NY for another two years.

After Kumi returned to Japan, she started her own coaching practice. With over 2,000 hours coaching leaders at all levels of the organization, from new managers to the C-suite, she is a trusted advisor to executive leaders.

She has over eight years of experience working as a global consultant and corporate facilitator with expertise in global leadership, team effectiveness, cross-cultural conflict and diversity and organizational change.

Partial Past Client List            

YAMAHA, Canon, Astellas, Fuji Xerox, NEC, Luxury Hotel in Tokyo, Bank of America (Meryl Lynch), AXA Management, Kuraray, Mitsui Gyosai, Airbus Helicopters Japan, Toyo Medical and Dental University, Waseda University


 Areas of Expertise

·    Organizational Learning and Talent Development

·    Organizational Culture and Vision

·    DNA Session and Core Values

·    Coaching-based Communication for Management

·    Cross-Cultural and Diversity Communication

·    Train-the-Trainer

·    Promoting/Empowering Women in the organization



Educational Credentials

·  Completed Training Series,

Organizational & Relationship

Systems Coaching, CRR Global (USA)

·  Certified EQ Assessor, Six Seconds (USA)

·  Graduate of the Advanced Coaching Program, Coach U (USA)

·  Graduate of Team Flow Professional Coach School, and Facilitator Program (Japan)

·  B.A. in English (Kyoto, Japan)



·     Workshop Consultant/Facilitator for various companies at executive and manager level since 2006

·     System Coach since 2014

·     Business/Executive Coach since 2006

·     Executive (HR Director, Licensing &

Acquisitions Director), Viz Media, USA

·     Guest Relations Manager, Hotel Nikko San Francisco

·     Sales/Translator at Simul Academy, Kyoto



·    Workshop Facilitation

·    Strategic Planning and other “Offsite” Facilitation

·    Consulting Services

·    Executive Coaching

·    Group/Team Coaching

·    System Coaching

·    Company Vision

·    Keynotes


What is your “edge” – as a woman, as a professional, as a parent or as a friend…?

Being a coach for nearly 15 years, my automatic attitude toward issues and concerns are almost always very positive and forward driven – I would immediately say, “what is it that I need most to go forward?” or “what would make it possible?” Yes, it is a good approach, but I have been consciously trying to stay in my ‘edge’ lately as much as necessary, instead of looking for immediate solutions. Why? Because while it is very uncomfortable and takes courage to do so, I came to discover that it lets you have a deep, internal conversation about yourself. Funny thing is that your ambivalent state of mind could take you to an even deeper, new place.

This summer, I almost lost one of my valuable work relationships. After working closely and respectfully for some years, this project manager did some things to disrespect and distrust our partnership. I honestly communicated my struggles to her and she apologized profusely… but I was still so mad, sad and disappointed afterwards that I didn’t even want to hear her voice, let alone be near her. I guess I had a lot of expectations from this partnership.

I was amazed with the amount of negative energy pouring out of me. I just did not know what to do with myself as it continued over three weeks! After a while, I became confused and did not even know what I was upset about anymore. I was stuck in the negative zone.

So I finally I gave up and decided to face myself by asking “what is my problem?” or “why can’t I get out of this negativity?” over and over – I could have called my coach, but this time I just knew I had to deal with it by myself. Well, after long internal conversations, I finally realized that it was my ‘edge’ that kept me in the negative loop for so long, way more than necessary.

My edge was: “to be in a negative zone” ironically. I become denial, I resist… and as a consequence, I completely freeze up hence I get stuck there. The more I tried to be positive because I cannot stand being negative, the more I was pulled back to the negativity – just like a rubber band. I had a strong belief that being negative was a bad thing since childhood.

Now that I accepted this edge (among many others), I have more clarity about myself and feel stronger. I am so glad that I did not let my auto-pilot-positivity cloud the truth about me.

What would be the belief you have that might prevent you from being authentic?

If you’d like to learn more about yourself including your edge and then to move forward, here is a great exercise for you! It is called “Zap the Tolerations” created by Coach U.

Tolerations are those things that you put up with every day that distract you from other important thing. Sometimes the underlying source of continued tolerations is to avoid taking full responsibility for particular circumstances in your life, but eventually you will recognize that this is in large part what is holding you back from achieving your goals. In handling the things you are tolerating you free up time and energy to devote to a higher quality of life. Here are steps how you do this:

  1. Write all tolerations down   ex) clean my bike, call mom, save money etc.
  2. Look for a pivotal toleration; they will resolve about five other tolerations when handled
  3. Handle the source

(copyright, 2005 Coach U,, all rights reserved.

Have fun!