Personal & Executive Coach

Consulting Psychologist & Psychoanalyst

Education & Training

Dr. Jenai Wu Steinkeller (“Dr. Wu” or Jenai) received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Northwestern University School of Medicine, where she also completed 4 years of pre-doctoral clinical training at inpatient and outpatient services of the Institute of Psychiatry at Northwestern Hospital, Chicago. She also attended the University of Chicago College where she studied Cultural Anthropology, and graduated with honors in Behavioral Sciences.

She completed post-doctoral training and fellowships at Harvard Medical School training hospitals including Massachusetts General Hospital and Beth-Israel Deaconess Medical Center, where she specialized in psychodynamics – a theory of human psychology focused on early development and the unconscious aspects of the human mind.  Her 2-year post-doc in group psychodynamics grounded her specialization in organizational work.  She also entertained some detours in child and family therapy, neuropsychological assessment and neuropsychoanalysis.

Dr. Wu completed her psychoanalytic training at the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute (BPSI), accredited by the American Psychoanalytic Association; and she is a certified psychoanalyst since 2007.

Her learning and training did not stop with these formal credentials, but continued as she strove to stay on the cutting edge of understanding the human mind and how to help people and organizations.  The central among these postdoctoral training programs and certifications include (in reverse order):

  • Somatic Experiencing (SE™), an embodied, nonverbal, neurophysiological theory and practice of how people develop deep resilience and recover from trauma
  • Tavistock Certification in coaching through a psychodynamic approach.
  • Executive coaching training at iCoach based at Zicklin Business School of Baruch College, New York City
  • Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT™), a model for improving deep communication between partners in relationships
  • Action Learning™, an approach to organizational and team development and collaboration based on deep communication
  • Mindfulness & Teaching Mindfulness, through a 3-year, invitation-only program called Community Dharma Leadership (CDL) based at Spirit Rock and Insight Meditation Society
  • Negotiation training at the Program on Negotiation, Harvard Law School
  • Classroom education in business, management, organizational psychology, cross-cultural management, at Harvard Business School, Sloan School of Management, and University of Michigan, followed by continuous lifetime learning in leadership and organizational development and business-related subject matters.
  • Neuroanatomy at Washington University School of Medicine; and Neuropsychoanalysis at the Boston Psychoanalytic Institute, followed by continuous learning and practice in brain science.


For 25 years she was on Harvard Medical School’s faculty as Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychology; and for several years as Lecturer at Tufts University School of Medicine. In the former she was based at the Massachusetts General Hospital, where she taught and supervised psychiatry residents in the practice of psychotherapy; and the latter at Tufts New England Medical Center.  Other teaching credits include adjunct faculty at the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School; and a course in social psychology at Emerson College of Media Arts.
Jenai Steinkeller


For most of her career, Dr. Wu has had dual practices in psychotherapy and psychoanalysis on the one hand, and organizational consulting and executive coaching on the other. In the former case she saw patients in her downtown Boston office where she treated individuals and couples on the couch and face-to-face.  In the latter case she worked in organizations with executives and their teams — to facilitate organizational change or help individual executives in their development.  After the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown, she consolidated these two practices into a single practice of personal coaching, and executive and leadership coaching – conducted remotely.

She began her organizational consulting and coaching practice after a 3-year stint as Senior Consultant at Trompenaars Hampden-Turner, a boutique Dutch management consultancy specializing in working with top teams in global organizations — particularly with an interest in helping these companies in culture-related issues, such as cross-border mergers and acquisitions, and establishing vision, mission and values.  In this capacity her clients included CEOs, C-suite and senior leaders in organizations such as Mercer, Applied Materials, RAG Coal, Alpharma, and VNU.

In her evolution as a psychologist her interests have included the psychodynamics of resilience, the use of the body in embodied learning, healing and mindfulness, the utilization of emotions in deep communication, the cultural underpinnings of conflict and negotiation, women in leadership, and trust and leadership.  For many years she consulted and wrote prolifically on these issues, and gave many lectures and workshops. Eventually all of these subjects were absorbed into a general approach to coaching described in About Speis.

Volunteer Work & Other Interests

For 20 years Dr. Wu volunteered with Physicians for Human Rights (PHR), a Nobel prize-winning organization focusing on policy, advocacy, medical ethics and humanitarian work in conflict regions worldwide. In addition to serving as an expert witness in cases involving torture, she trained physicians and attorneys on the impact and treatment of human rights violations on its victims.  For her work she was one of 20 nation-wide volunteers  honored during PHR’s 25th anniversary gala.

She channeled her interest in helping combat veterans suffering psychological and neurological injury by accepting, for many years, low-fee disability evaluations.

She enjoys many interests and hobbies including in nature, sports and music.  She is also inspired and motivated by a lifelong spiritual engagement which is focused, on one hand, on a variety of contemplative practices from different traditions, including Eastern Buddhist meditation practices, the Christian mystical tradition, and yoga and Ayurvedic practices.  To nourish these practices she has spent weeks and months in silent contemplative retreats in monasteries, dojos and ashrams. Another hobby is collecting spiritual chants and sacred music from diverse regions such as the Balkans, Caucasus, Africa, Roma, Asia and Americas, and diverse genres such as Hindu, Native American, Sufi, Gregorian, Sephardic, Zen, American Baptist, Eastern Orthodox, classical European, and so forth.  While very far from expert in her taste, she enjoys the musical diversity on the one hand.  On the other hand she is captured by the similarities across widely disparate traditions and regions, not least in the capacity of each tradition to convey reverence for the sacred.