Clients usually come to us with one (or more) of five expressed needs:

Expressed Need Outcomes (What We Help With)
1. To Think: “I need someone to think with, who will challenge my ideas, bring their own and be the sounding board I value”  An effective collaborative relationship that leads the leader (often the CEO) to clarity of thought, and breadth of perspective and resolution to act. Often we hear, “you have a way of both challenging my thinking and reframing ideas in a way that is very helpful.”
2. To Develop Teams: “I need a leadership team (or board) that thinks better and acts more effectively together”  An aligned team (or board), effectively implementing agreed strategy. Often we hear, “we would not have got there without your help, thank-you!”
3. To Evaluate: “We need to understand our impact on our people”  360 reports and feedback and organizational surveys that yield insight, build confidence and through concerted action, lead to changed behavior. Often we hear, “that instrument or assessment gave us new insight we did not have before”.
4. To be Coached: “I need someone to go and work with …”  After the inevitable, “Hi, your boss sent me, I’m here to help…” conversation, trust is built and a coaching/change agent relationship ensues. Often we hear, “you manage to walk the line between many relationships at once, and still I can trust you”
5. To Facilitate: “We need a facilitator, moderator, neutral third party, advisor, etc, to design and lead a workshop, meeting, conference, strategic plan process, change initiative … and so on”  Once we establish objectives before agendas, some of the most productive meetings our clients have ever experienced are delivered. Often we hear, “that was one of the best meetings we have had; I can hardly believe that we got that much done!”

From these initial beginnings, our client engagements usually evolve in three major ways:

  • As advisors to boards of directors
  • As coaches, change architects and co-creators with leaders
  • As facilitators, mentors, and cultivators of teams

What We Do

We Help You Stay Focused – The pace of business and the speed of change is relentless

At times it may feel that the business is running you rather than you running the business. While the speed and uncertainty can be threatening and distracting we recognize that many of your best opportunities come in the midst of messy chaos, when lots is changing. But that gets very distracting! We think we do our best work in the midst of turbulent environments where our ability to stay focused on your biggest business issues, not distracted by today’s crisis, is what you need most in an outsider.

We Emphasize Value Creation – Every business has to be profitable eventually

With this in mind, we seek a deep understanding of your value equation to your customer and identify both management and governance implications. This often enables you to see your immediate concern in a larger perspective – and sometimes even reframes the business problem. Anything we do for you must add to your value equation for your customers. Eventually, everything we do must lead to making your business work.

We Apply Systems Thinking – Your organization is a complex and dynamic interaction of multiple systems at work

We partner with you to help you see your business problem in its proper context including global, local and intra-business dynamics. We are more than a bit relentless in looking at the “whole” rather than just the “parts.” Actually, we get a bit impatient with “partial” problems and especially “partial solutions”. We always look at the big picture and keep fitting pieces together so you see the management choices you are making in a bigger context.

We Customize our Engagement – You and your organization have a unique personality and a history that must be understood and leveraged

As we partner with you we start with where you come from as a firm. We design change processes that fit the personality of the leaders and the organization. Every business is different. It has a different story, with different people and a different future. The result is that our work is more personal, the buy-in is deeper and chances of success increase.

We Establish Trusting Relationships – We are all looking to find partners we can trust

We have discovered that we have built trust only when we have demonstrated integrity, competence and genuine interest in our clients over time. As a result, we tend to establish long-term client relationships and help mobilize change across the organization over the long haul. And quite frankly, we prefer it this way.