Sacha Dekker

Resilience and Mindset Expert & Disability Advocate

why book sacha?

  • Sacha, an ICF certified coach, has coached executives from Fortune 500 companies, guiding them on their leadership journeys with a focus on productivity and inclusion
  • Sacha excels in supporting companies to create world-class, equitable learning experiences that enhance productivity, inclusion, and talent retention
  • Despite facing paralysis after surgery, Sacha defied expectations, achieving remarkable milestones, including walking the Great Wall of China and undertaking the Camino de Santiago

Biography

Sacha Dekker is a Learning and Talent Development executive who supports companies in achieving their goals in creating world class, equitable learning experiences that drive maximum productivity, reduce attrition, promote inclusion and retain top talent.

After growing up in the Netherlands, and living in Geneva and South Africa, in 2012 Sacha decided to make Dublin, Ireland her home. She’s held senior L&D roles across industries in both start-ups and well-established companies and as an ICF certified coach she has coached multiple Fortune 500 company executives in their leadership journeys.She holds a master’s in Education, Learning & Development and focused her dissertation on social learning in a hybrid environment.

In 2015, what was supposed to be a straightforward surgery, to cure her of the epileptic seizures that started in 2009, left Sacha fully paralysed down her left side, with her medical team telling her it was highly unlikely she’d ever walk, work, or live independently again, and the bleak prospect of life in a wheelchair in a nursing home.

To the day two years after the surgery Sacha reached her goal of walking on the Great Wall of China and in August 2023 she’s walking the last 110 km of the Camino de Santiago.

Sacha talks about resilience, mindset, overcoming adversity, disability awareness (both in the workplace and in general) and general leadership topics.

Topics

Disability Awareness in the Workplace

The unemployment rate for people with a disability is almost 2.3 times the rate compared to those without a disability. On top of that, only 10% of people with an invisible (hidden) disability feel safe enough to disclose this to their employer. That means that 90% of those with a disability hide part of themselves every day when they come to work. After being diagnosed with epilepsy in 2009, the first person I told at work asked me if I was a retard now. Since becoming hemiplegic I’ve been called “the pity hire”, “the quota filler” and told ‘people like me’ should not be in front of stakeholders because it looks weak.

In this talk you’ll learn about:

  • General disability awareness (language, what do we mean when we say ‘disabilities’)
  • How to create a safe environment for employees with disabilities
  • The real cost of hiring, and not hiring, people with disabilities

Building Resilience Through Mindset

Everyone talks about resilience and especially since the Covid19 pandemic it’s a hot topic. So what exactly is resilience and how do you build it? Waking up without the ability to walk, stand or even sit up straight without help, and doctors telling me I was going to spend my life in a wheelchair in a nursing home, resilience was all I had to draw on to keep me going.

In this talk you’ll learn about:

  • What resilience is and isn’t
  • The concept of toxic positivity and how to avoid it
  • How you can choose to be resilient

Sacha Dekker