Case Study

Bridging the Gap Between Personal and Professional


Organizational culture is something that can make or break a business. Investing in the growth of employees directly benefits the growth of the company. Or, at least that's the mentality that John Carlson, President of Mark-Taylor, operates on. 

Mark-Taylor Companies is the leading developer, owner, and investment manager of Arizona's premier rental communities. With over 36 years in business, Mark-Taylor has mastered the art of brand management and fostering a team that lives that story. When Carlson joined the team, he considered himself second-generation management, and one of his goals was to ensure it's passed on to third-generation management. This means that while it’s in his hands, creating an environment that supports employees, and habits that support his personal growth are a priority. 

The Goal

Carlson knew that Mark-Taylor would only be successful as the culture and the people. If those on his team were successful and the company invested in them, it would lead to team longevity and a culture full of loyal, equally passionate team members. 

But in order to get his team to that place, he wanted to focus on his self development and find the perfect coach to get him there. Carlson needed guidance on building principals, growing in his professional role, and to help him connect to others in his personal life. There was a disconnect between his business success and his personal and family connections—and he was on a journey to bridge it. 

The Experience 

John Carlson has been in the real estate business for a significant amount of time. As such, he is a part of many networking groups—so when it came time to connect with a coach that could help him find bigger success, Intently was the answer. 

After working with the AZ Multi-Housing Association, Carlson was able to experience Christina's communication style and resonated with her ability to connect with the group and move them forward. He knew that Christina was an ideal coach for him and that she acted as the person to lean on and take charge in helping him focus on the things he wanted to accomplish. 

Carlson operates by always wanting to get to know the other person. Intently flipped that script on him, in a good way.  At the start of each session, Christina asks ​​“Where do you want to focus today?” There is no agenda other than to help him discover and work toward his journey. 

The sessions are 2 hours every other week, but it’s not just about showing up. Through workbooks and goal setting, Intently created an environment to lean into, or else you wouldn’t get the full experience. While the sessions began with Carlson being closed off, he now works on the hardest parts each session to improve for both his team, but most importantly his family.

The Results

John Carlson admittedly had a hard time giving himself space and making time for personal things. He’s focused on creating longevity for a company and ensuring the leadership team can continue the legacy of “be better than you were yesterday.” With so much focus on work and putting the needs of others before your own, there isn’t room to grow personally and maintain the most important relationships. 


A big focus for John was goal setting when starting the 1:1 engagement with Intently. As the president of a company it’s easy to tie organizational goals to your personal identity, but John knew that was not what would make him feel fulfilled. Intently helped break down his goals and how he wanted to grow from a job aspect and start working on each smaller task to get him to the end.


When Carlson first started his engagement with Intently for 1:1 coaching, it was all business. After two years of continuous coaching that is no longer the case, and there is a percent of time carved out in his sessions to focus on his personal life. He’s realized that it’s important for a foundation of everything else—with a successful personal life comes a successful career and organization. It’s connected. Coaching with Intently has helped him to be emotionally available and able to connect with his family. 

Putting it all together

Carlson’s initial vision around executive coaching was mostly isolated to how he could improve as a leader, enhance his influence, personal brand, and elevate his overall strategic thinking. In his eyes, he can confidently say each of these specific areas have improved. 

He didn’t anticipate his growth personally from a family, husband, son, and father perspective. It’s helped me to grow and invest differently in each of my relationships, which has translated into stronger and more dynamic relationships across each of my close family members. 

Intently is about integrating each piece of yourself, professional and personal, so that you can come as a whole person to life. John found that balance. 

If you're ready to talk about how you are integrating yourself personally and professionally, schedule a time to chat with Christina today.

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