Miroslav Reljic is an award-winning leadership coach based in Calgary. He came to Canada with his family, who fled war-torn Croatia in 1995. Reljic could barely speak the language, but with his will and determination he built himself into an entrepreneurial success, working his way through university and starting his own business, Reljic Coached. He was interviewed for The Edge’s Winners’ Circle in a past issue, and below is part of that conversation.
Why did you pursue coaching and training?
I am a trained economist, but I was always curious about human psychology and human behaviour and what makes people tick. I was especially interested in leaders and decision-makers. I pursued a coaching diploma at the University of Cambridge because of the quality of their coaching program and excellent balance between the theoretical framework of coaching and an opportunity to practice what I learned.
What does someone have to gain from your workshops or sessions?
In my workshops I always share stories of my journey and determination in Canada. From cleaning offices at the Bow Valley Square in 1999, to most recently consulting for a Berkshire Hathaway company (owned by Warren Buffett) in 2017. What clients will gain are real-life insights and how to transition in any situation in life, career, and business. I want my clients to have skills to create their own opportunities, so they are no longer one of the many, but one of the few, and so they can become very successful. I am passionate about coaching and that is why I established my coaching and consulting company, Reljic Coached, in 2013, so my clients can benefit from my expertise in coaching and from my 15 years of consulting experience.
You arrived in Canada barely able to speak either language, and have built yourself into a huge success… How do you translate your own experiences to your coaching?
Great question. I’m always true to myself in anything I do. When I worked and consulted for top Canadian oil, gas, and banking companies, I was always accountable and responsible for my actions and results. In coaching, I share that with my clients. For example, if you make a mistake at work, admit that you made the mistake, own it, and if you achieve great results at work, share those achievements with your boss and your team. Our actions and what we do always speak louder than our words.
How did it feel to be named one of the RBC Top 25 Canadian Immigrants?
Oh, it was an amazing feeling. The RBC Top 25 Canadian Immigrant Award is not just an award. To me, it represents my commitment and dedication to giving back to thousands of people I have volunteered with over the years. In addition, it also represents my commitment to Canada. Canada has embraced me and provided me with safety and stability. I was able to achieve all my goals, and I’m very blessed to live in a country where differences are embraced and celebrated. My parents were at the ceremony and they were so proud and happy.
What is your advice to recently-arrived immigrants in Canada?
Always have clear goals for what you want to achieve. Create plans for your goals. Execute your plans and goals. It will not be easy, I was in your shoes. I faced many obstacles, but I was always committed to my goals and plans.
2017 Winter Issue Feature
Shirley Graham | Editorial Assistant