We work in a range of industries and sectors. Below are some brief descriptions of projects which typify our work.

Typical Projects

1.      Executive Coaching with a stalled executive.

Situation

An executive in a large financial services company appears to have leadership potential and has been identified for advancement.  His peers respect him, but he has difficulty leading his team, as they get bogged down on side issues and personality conflicts.  His superiors want him to identify and address the stumbling blocks to his career advancement.

Approach

This executive was assessed using well-known and researched personality tests to help him understand, focus on and craft a personal development plan

Outcome

The executive utilized executive coaching in a 12 month engagement. During this time, specific goals and objectives were identified with the coach and worked on in the coaching process.  At the end of the year, he was more focused, was getting along better with his team and became more comfortable as the leader of the team. At year’s end, the team outperformed their peers on all measures for their industry.

2.      A Family business needs to grow

Situation

A family business, now in its fourth generation, was beginning to slide in a highly competitive industry. Although they had been doing well and maintained market share, the latest numbers suggested that they needed to professionalize their leadership and bring fresh thinking into the executive suite.

Approach

As part of a larger, collaborative project with a family business consulting firm, we assessed the proposed candidates through the CEO selection process.  The assessment results were presented to the selection committee of the Board.  The results and recommendations were folded into the selection process for considering the best candidate for the CEO position.

Outcome

Because of our input, the Board was able to minimize extraneous factors impinging on the selection process: the influence of family relationships, internal politics and concern about family relationships after the selection was made.  The objective input allowed the Board to remain more objective and focused on what was best for the business in their deliberations about the candidates.

             (More on family business succession planning. See Article 2.)            

     3.      A Team needs to improve

Situation

A work team at a large university, although doing well in terms of productivity, was having difficulty holding on to team members.  Turnover, although average for their profession, was of concern. They wanted some assistance in addressing issues of stability and growth for the team.

Approach

The team members were introduced to a process and team development tool which objectively assessed their current state of development as a team.  In a series of facilitated team meetings, the team received feedback on their development, within the context of similar teams in the industry.

Outcome

The team set out for itself its goals and an action plan based on the result of the questionnaire and their strategic initiatives for the coming year.  They become more focused and productive with the added objective input from the meeting.

4.      An executive considers career options

Situation

A seasoned, senior executive was considering his career development, particularly after some major changes of leadership within the company. He needed clear, objective input about his career interests in considering any move from his present situation.

Approach

The executive took a battery of career, vocational and personality tests to provide a framework for his considerations about his career.  Through a series of regular coaching sessions, he developed a clearer focus about his interests and the possible moves he might consider.

Outcome

The executive, as a result of the coaching process, remained in his present position, and made significant changes in his own management style and relationships with superiors, peers and subordinates.

5.      An organization needs a mirror

Situation

A fast growing, high-tech company, having tripled the number of employees in a little over 2 years, was looking for assistance in identifying process breakdowns which were impacting product development.

Approach

The company had grown so quickly that many joked that nobody really knew who worked there anymore.  The array of communication problems, lack of process coordination and lack of transparency in all phases of product development, testing, marketing and product release, was impacting all levels of the organization.  Through a series of group interviews with representatives of each sector of the organization, the challenges became clear.

Big Leap developed, wrote and performed an original organizational drama, a play, for the company retreat.  The play highlighted the challenges to the organization and enabled the participants to identify the areas they needed to focus on for their own team and for the larger organization. 

Outcome

The drama provided a platform and a common experience for the employees and leadership to begin to address the challenges they faced.  Subsequent facilitated meetings over the course of a year helped stabilize the rapid changes rippling throughout the organization.