Our Story

McDonald Inc. was launched and created out of a gap that our CEO Sonia McDonald saw and experienced from her own personal journey. Sonia resolved to start building a new future and model how women can be tenacious and independent after a forced lifestyle change in 2006. With a devastating end to her marriage, feelings of loneliness, not having any work and being stuck in a foreign country, Sonia decided to take control. After a turning point and within a few months, Sonia had gained a position as a leadership coach, trainer and consultant and without realising it, had found her passion in inspiring people to learn and grow. Sonia started the LeadershipHQ blog in 2007. With a growing following and the desire to make an even greater impact, Sonia established the LeadershipHQ consulting business in 2008.
Since then, Sonia has helped thousands of good leaders become great leaders; progressing their leadership journey to become the best version of themselves and in turn, inspire others to join them. Sonia believes we should lead with kindness and courage, from the heart, doing rather than telling. She is known for her mantra ‘just lead.’ For more than 25 years, Sonia has been on the front lines of Human Resources, Leadership and People and Culture. She has held leadership positions worldwide. Through experience, research and study, Sonia has come to realise what it takes to be a truly courageous leader. Putting people at ease, Sonia starts important conversations and inspires courageous action in people around the world. Sonia has a wealth of experience working on-on-one with emerging leaders, women in business, SME’s right through to CEOs of multi-national organisations and start-up enterprises. Sonia is known as one of Australia’s Leading Keynote Speakers and she has spoken across the Globe about Leadership, Courage, Kindness and Impact.
She have advised and coached 1000’s of leaders to success over the past decade. She is an award-winning author of Leadership Attitude, Just Rock It and First Comes Courage and writes regularly for publications such as The Australian, HRD Magazine, Smart Healthy Women and Women’s Business Media. Sonia’s mission is to help women across the globe be courageous in their lives, careers and leadership.
In 2020, Sonia’s companies LeadershipHQ and McDonald Inc. now works in partnership with organisations Australia-wide and they also hosted the inaugural Outstanding Leadership Awards. The awards have been a dream of Sonia’s for many years and are about championing leaders across organisations who make diversity, inclusion and kindness part of their day to day culture.

Sonia transitioned from a scared, abandoned woman into a courageous and determined one, who helps others undergo their own transformation. In particular, Sonia has built on her own experience to empower and educate women, helping corporates embrace attracting and developing women and getting women into male dominated industries.

Because we don’t see many women leaders nowadays and this need is urgent.

Sonia is now significantly increasing focus for women through McDonald Inc. and a sharpened strategy to “support women who need advice, skills, training and coaching to get a job, gain skills for the future of work, start a business and get that seat at the table” 

We have experienced facilitators and coaches that have travelled the globe delivering development programs and strategies to organisations and to leaders at all levels of their journey. Talented in all areas of leadership, each have their core strengths being leadership, talent, strategy, cultural transformation and human resources.

“The program not only imparted useful knowledge, it created a forum for team members to interact and share experiences which helped foster the cohesiveness of the team.”

David Rutter Managing Director, KANE Construction


Places we have worked

We have been educating courageous leadership across Australasia for more than 20 years. Here are some of the places we have been privileged to work during that time.

Want to work with us?

Are you someone who wants to foster courageous leadership in organisations across the Globe?

We are always looking to connect with coaches and facilitators to assist us in providing outstanding leadership programs to our corporate clients.  Please ensure you provide us with a current CV and at least two referees of organisations you have worked with when completing the form.

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