Gary Payne, ACC

Senior Consultant

Gary is an ACC credentialed Coach with the International Coach Federation who brings direct personal experience as a former CEO with a 6-year tenure, long time P&L leader and executive search consultant to his clients. He is an active coach to senior executives in organizations in North America, with a particular focus on working with the C-Suite and high potential leaders. He has worked in multiple industries with a primary focus on Cleantech, Industrial, Professional Services and Financial Services.

Gary also has a passion for helping college students develop their leadership skills and approach to support their journey to become the best version of themselves and maximize their impact on the world. He works with the Doerr Institute for New Leaders to coach students at Rice University through their Activation and Synthesis leadership development solutions. He works with students at the Doctorate, Master, and Bachelor levels to help them develop their Emotional Intelligence, define their Leadership Best Self, and develop intentionality in their journey to become the leader they want to be. In addition to individual work with students at Rice, he has led multiple group coaching programs on topics such as Developing and Sustaining Resilience, Developing Trust as a Superpower, and Living and Leading with Purpose.

Gary graduated from The University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Finance. He and his wife live in Austin, where he is active on several philanthropic non-profit boards.

Career Highlights

  • For an American Multinational Technology Company:
    • Lead consulting sales and marketing for the Company in the Energy, Industrial and Financial Services Industries.
    • Responsible for developing and leading a
      team of Sales Representatives and Subject
      Matter Experts in delivering consulting
      solutions to a diverse client base.
  • For a Boutique Technology Firm:
    • Served as Executive Vice President and Regional Manager.
    • Grew his region from $10 million in sales to over $90 million over a 5 year period.
    • Opened 4 new offices from Texas to California.
  • For a Private Equity Backed Industrial Services Organization:
    • Served as a first time CEO for 6 years
    • Grew the Revenue, EBIDTA and Enterprise Value of the company by over 3x.
    • Developed several new markets for the company and was able to successfully exit the business after 7 years.
  • For a Boutique Search Firm:
    • Executed well over 150 Retained Executive Search assignments.
    • Achieved top billing status and has filled roles including Board Chair, CEO, CFO, COO, CTO, CHRO and Head of Sales.

Areas of Specialization

Individual Systemic Coaching

• Systemic Leadership Team Coaching

• Emotional Intelligence Coaching

• First Time or Newly Promoted CEO/P&L

• Developing Strategic Focus for Technology

• Strength Development Assessment and

• Coaching High Potential Leaders in

developing key leadership competencies

Unique Attributes

• Credentialed Certified Practitioner of Systemic Team Coaching, a powerful individual and team coaching methodology that assists CEO’s and their teams to develop Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) strategies, effectively add value to an ever growing inventory of stakeholders companies must serve as well as traditional team coaching strategies to develop team effectiveness, psychological safety, etc.

• Relates directly to the pressures involved in the C-Suite, how to develop and display emotional intelligence in the midst of leading a company, building and developing a high value creating leadership team, what it’s like to report to a Board and the need to effectively manage the stressors that are standard in today’s C-Suite.

• Central Areas of Focus:

  • Emotional Intelligence Coaching and Neuroscience: Gary employs techniques to help leaders rewire their thinking, take ownership of their thoughts, and overcome limitations, thereby fostering the growth of their Emotional Intelligence.
  • Systemic Leadership Team Coaching: The ultimate goal is to support leaders in evolving their individual and collective leadership, transforming it into a competitive advantage and a catalyst for generating value across the entire ecosystem.
  • Solving Critical Challenges in a VUCA World: Gary understands the unique challenges faced by leaders in a Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, and Ambiguous (VUCA) world. He meets his clients where they are during coaching sessions, to help them address critical strategic problems, conflicts, and challenges. Through his guidance, leaders gain the necessary tools to navigate the ever-changing business environment successfully.


  • Hobbies

    Golf, Biking, Reading, Art, Cooking

  • Favorite Food

    Italian, Thai, Tex-Mex

  • Band

    U2, Dire Straits, Supertramp

  • Movie

    Lonesome Dove

  • Super Power:


  • TV Show

    College Sports

  • Book

    Leadership Books, Lonesome Dove, Ben Franklin, Steve Jobs

  • Quote

    If you could give the younger version of yourself advice, knowing what you know now, what would it be?

Consultant Insights

  • My ideal client is someone that:

    Has just been hired or promoted into a new role and needs to drive change or a leader whose team is

  • The highlight of my career so far has been:

    Making the decision to pursue leadership and leadership team development consulting full time.

  • My superpower as a coach is:

    Being able to coach systemically, which I believe is critical today due to the amount of change required of businesses.

  • My philosophy on life is:

    Trust in the Lord and serve Him and others with my very best.

  • I hope my legacy is one of:

    Helping people realize a greater purpose and version of themselves.