Developing “Ah-ha!” Moments with Ariel Salomé


Developing AH-HA moments with Ariel Salome


Ariel Salomé discovered she wanted to be a coach while listening to a TED Talk. At the time she was a participant in the 2012 class of Leadership Pasadena, and one of her assignments was to watch “How Great Leaders Inspire Action” by Simon Sinek.

“The facilitator asked us to reflect on Sinek’s words: ‘people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it’ and write down our why,” Ariel reflected to us recently. “I took the assignment home and began to recall things I had written about myself in my journal, resume, and cover letters, as well as feedback I’d received from others about how they experience me.”

This act of self-reflection (which we encourage members at The Forem to make time for on a monthly basis) led to Ariel’s first “ah ha!” moment in her career.

“I wrote down several attributes and goals like a mission and vision statement then took it to one of my mentors, and she said ‘it sounds like you want to be a coach,’” Ariel said. “I initially rejected the idea, but later ran into a book at work called So You Want to Be a Coach? In it, there was a brief assessment and my results were ‘you should definitely be a coach if you aren’t already.’ So I enrolled in a 1-year certification course in grad school and the rest is history.”

Now, Ariel’s passion is helping others discover their “ah ah!” career moments.

“I absolutely love leading people back to themselves!” she said. “My training to become a professional coach completely changed how I listen and communicate with myself and others. Inquiry, as a skill, is remarkable.”

As part of leadership development at Lyft, Ariel puts her skills into practice every day and helps people own their personal greatness… something she struggled to understand when she was younger.

“When I was in my 20s I didn’t understand my power as a leader, nor did I respect it. Being less thoughtful with my words and actions because “I’m not the boss, so why does it matter?” caused me to get in a lot of trouble. This was my greatest learning in leading without authority aka non-positional leadership.”

Approaching people from a place of empowerment has been her most effective tool. “You control the narrative,” she reminded us. “That means your brand and your reputation are in your hands. Don’t let anyone put a spin on anything associated with you without your permission.”

Her choice to join The Forem as a mentor stemmed from her desire to give back and continue reaching as many people as possible.

“I’m animated by coaching emerging and experienced leaders who want to develop their brand/leadership philosophy, those who desire to create high-performing teams but struggle to do so, those moving through a transition, those who seek to understand inequity and want to be inclusive and how to become an ally and change agent.”


Book: The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho


Ariel Salomé – a visionary thought leader, healer, speaker, and transformative leadership and team coach with extensive experience in training, facilitation, and curriculum design for adult learners. She designs and implements innovative programs aimed at catalyzing individuals, organizations, and communities. Her mission is to develop people and organizations who lead wholeheartedly. Ariel Salomé thrives on challenging assumptions and limiting beliefs, reframing challenges into opportunities. She possesses the uncanny ability to constructively disturb the status quo to the point where it opens the floodgates of possibilities, leading to transformation.

She completed ICF comprehensive coaching certification and doctoral-level training in human and organizational development with an emphasis on social justice at Fielding Graduate University. She just returned to California from Washington D.C. where she managed National Science Foundation grant-funded projects in STEM higher education reform, supporting the development of STEM faculty leaders across the nation. Ariel is now known as the “Corporate Healer” as she coaches and develops the next generation of leaders in tech as the PM for Leadership Development at Lyft. Ariel is also the founder and space holder for METANOIA, a spiritual community of practice.