Susan Smalley

Anyone with the right mindset, tools and support can be a great leader.”

A Note From Susan

Focusing on growing as a leader can be an amazing  journey for anyone who takes it on. I pull from years of experience and closet full of tools to find the most straightforward and simple approach. Every situation and every client is unique, so I believe it’s important to come with a plan and stay flexible to adapt to the group’s needs and dynamics.

Growing women leaders is something I’m especially passionate about. I have been a mentor for the L.A. Chapter of the Women’s Leadership Network, launched a mentor program for Women in Animation, and created the Women Entrepreneur’s Network for like-minded women leaders to come together, share resources, and connect as we build our businesses.

Whether you’re taking on a new leadership role or have been managing teams for most of your career, I can help you find your authentic leadership style. You’re already a good leader. But are you ready to strive for great?

Susan Smalley, PCC, CPCC, MBA

is the founder of Essential Leadership Partners.

For nearly 3 decades Susan has worked with leaders and teams at mid to large sized organizations to build more effective communication, transform culture and elevate their impact.  Her mix of optimism, straight talk and humor allow her to quickly connect and build trust with her clients. Before founding Essential Leadership Partners, she had a long career at The Walt Disney Studios in Leadership Development and Coaching.

Susan has worked with leaders at Sony, Hyundai, First 5 LA, Edmunds, Loyola Marymount University, Jewish Community Foundation, NBC/Universal, Women in Animation, Tree People, Blue Star Families and Mattel, to name few.


In addition to her MBA, Susan:

Holds a  PCC coaching credential from International Coach Federation.

Is a certified Co-active Coach (CPCC)  from the Co-active Training Institute.

Is a certified strengths coach from The Marcus Buckingham Company.

Has served on the International Coach Federation Los Angeles Board of Directors for several years.

Is an affiliate member of Harvard’s Institute of Coaching.

Susan's Credentials
About Essential Leadership Partners

About Essential Leadership Partners

We believe

in being real with people.
in everyone’s potential to be great.
every person has their own authentic leadership style.
in giving leaders the roadmap to great leadership.
in focusing on your strengths.
transformation takes time.
your growth is an amazing journey.
in YOU.