Meet Our Founder: Roberta Dombrowski

Roberta founded Learn Mindfully in 2022 with the hopes of helping leaders build their most authentic, fulfilling, and sustainable lives. She brings a deep experience in education, research, and design to her role as Instructor and Coach. We enjoyed getting to know her perspective, and think you will too.

How has your background in workplace education shaped your design path?

My path has definitely been unique. I started my career in the tech space as a learning experience designer. I was creating customer enablement resources to teach people how to use our products more effectively. I felt like I was putting a band-aid on a poor user experience and was given the opportunity to transition to my team’s UX team at the time. This allowed me to get ahead of the problems customers were having. At the same time, I was working part time on an MS in Organizational Performance and Workplace Learning. This taught me how to get to the root cause of problems that customers and businesses were having. It was also the impetus for jumping into Product Management. Being a PM felt like putting on a pair of shoes that were a bit too snug for me, it didn’t feel like home. Shortly after, I made the decision to specialize in user research. I found myself researching really interesting topics like how people learn at work and how organizations measure employee engagement, performance, and skills.

Very quickly, I found myself moving into research leadership, most recently as the VP of Research at User Interviews. This experience really exposed me to how to use research to drive business growth and revenue. 

The more I progressed within leadership, the more I found joy in the coaching and educational parts of my role. I was often coaching others around how to build cultures of learning in their organizations.

What have you learned about leadership through the seasons of your career?

  • Take time to understand yourself: Leadership begins with an awareness of yourself, your unique values, motivations, and vision. It also means developing intelligence to recognize the signals your body is telling you so that you can stay grounded, present, and connected during all of the moments that are thrown at you.
  • You don’t have to be a manager to be a leader: Leading is about inspiring and enabling others to create change. It’s a hat that you can take on and off during different situations and environments. It’s not something that you need a formal title for. You can inspire and support others while being an impactful individual contributor.
  • Develop your leadership style: There are endless examples of leadership all around us but it’s essential for us to explore and find a style that is uniquely ours. Taking time to understand our values can enable us to lead ourselves, teams, partners and wider organizations more effectively.

What inspired you to become an instructor and coach?

I’ve spent the majority of my career working in workplace education, because I hold a deep belief that each and every one of us is naturally creative, resourceful, and whole. Throughout the seasons of my career, I built educational products like The Predictive Index talent development workshops, Pluralsight’s online learning assessments, and edX’s online learning platform. 

Due to my background in workplace learning and education, I had spent years reading and conducting studies about effective leadership and management. After coaching individuals and teams as an IC, I ended up jumping feet first into managing. No amount of books would have prepared me for this experience. I actually wish that I had training while I was going through the experience!

Founding Learn Mindfully was an opportunity to return to my roots of workplace learning with a familiar community that is dear to my heart. I enjoy holding space for others to explore and learn from each other.

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