leadership & team development

Thinking Partners designs a customized leadership development approach that fits your needs and leadership talent development goals. We draw from a selection of trademarked assessments and programs that we are experienced in and certified to deliver as part of a customized approach to meet specific leadership development and organizational needs.

Our simple yet effective approach

Innovative Leadership Development (experiential learning, skills development, heightened self-awareness and assessments) + Individual Coaching (the ‘stick’ factor) = Sustainable, quantifiable results for leaders and organizations

We know that leadership development begins with the individual and offer a number of well-established leadership assessments. We have shown that optimal outcomes for leadership development of any kind are achieved with skills development and leadership coaching occurring in concert. The impact of training increases from 30% to 70% when training is coupled with coaching. Xerox Corporation carried out several studies showing that in the absence of follow-up coaching, 87% of the intended skills development from training alone was lost: that’s 87 cents of every skills development dollar down the drain! Coaching and leadership development skills training go hand-in-hand. Coaching is key to ensuring content becomes integrated into a leader’s behaviour and acts as the ‘stick’ factor.

Tools & Assessments

Leadership tools and assessments to expand self-awareness & develop self-mastery:

Narrative 360 Feedback Reports

Narrative 360 Feedback Reports are designed to provide clients with feedback on how effectively they demonstrate behaviours aligned with focus areas that affect their leadership performance in their current role. The process assists executives and leaders move toward increased self-awareness, presence and impact. Thinking Partners offers a highly customized Narrative 360 process that includes interviews with the client’s direct reports, peers, senior colleagues and management as well as a detailed report summarizing the key themes based on the input received. The process also includes a debrief session with the client and a further meeting to create an action plan. The Narrative 360 can be conducted in tandem with coaching sessions if so desired.

– Core Gift Discovery © Process
Designed over a twenty-year period, the Core Gift Discovery© process has been experienced by thousands of people from many walks of life. Each of us has a unique core gift that is our most valued asset, and connected to our deepest sense of purpose. When it is acknowledged and used as part of our work and life tasks we feel valued, respected and able to make our fullest contribution. Anyone can complete the Core Gift interview process, using a facilitated approach whereby their core gift is revealed.

Danae is the first Core Gift master facilitator in Vancouver. Read more about the Core Gift Discovery© process.

– Myers-Briggs Type Indicator ® (MBTI)
The MBTI, first developed in 1975, has been an invaluable assessment and training tool for executive coaches and other professionals in providing insight and feedback to individuals on their personality type. MBTI is grounded in the theory of psychological types as developed by C. G. Jung. For more information on MBTI visit the Psychometrics website.


– Leadership Values Assessment (LVA)
The Leadership Values Assessment supports leaders in broadening and strengthening their leadership skills. An LVA involves carrying out a 360-degree survey on the leader’s values, and the results of an LVA highlight the true, authentic nature of a leader as well as key areas for growth in achieving their full potential. The LVA specifically focuses on the level of alignment between a leader’s values and those of the organization they work with. When used in conjunction with coaching, an LVA is one of the most powerful development tools available. Click here for more information on this assessment.

– Individual Values Assessment (IVA)
The Individual Values Assessment is a self-assessment instrument that can be used in combination with the LVA or alone depending on the client’s needs. Primarily, it is used by leaders to understand the dynamic relationship between their personal values, the values of the organization, and the values they would like to see in the organization. With this information, we can assist individuals to maximize their values alignment within an organization, and bring more of themselves – including greater capacity and levels of contribution – to their work. Click here for more information on this assessment.

– Personal Values Assessment (PVA)
Who you are, what you hold dear, what upsets you, and what underlies your decisions, are all connected to your personal values. Your values reflect what is important to you. They are a shorthand way of describing your motivations. Together with your beliefs, they are the causal factors that drive your decision-making. The Personal Values Assessment is a simple survey that takes just a few minutes of your time and provides a wealth of information about why you do what you do.

Take your FREE Personal Values Assessment.

Leadership Development Programs

We collaborate with our clients to design engaging, highly experiential workshops. These can be delivered in a variety of ways, including from half day to 2-day sessions. The following are a few examples of what we can offer – please contact us to discuss how we can develop a customized workshop for your organization or leadership team.

Customized Leadership Workshops

– Listen to Understand and Connect
• Listening and learning to formulate powerful questions are perhaps two of the most important skills a leader can develop.
• Introduces key listening skills and provides ample opportunity to practice.
• Note that “Leader as Coach” includes these components and builds on them further.

 – Leadership Mindset
• Mindsets can be understood as mental frames or models by which we view and interpret the world – shaped by our beliefs and experiences in life.
• Explores how your interpretation of experiences is subjective and how to keep this in mind when we judge others and situations – we are viewing what happens through our own lens.

 – Giving and Receiving Feedback
• High performing cultures are often seen as “feedback rich” environments; namely, places where people are not only comfortable giving feedback, they actively seek it out.
• This session will focus on effective feedback practices.

 – Leader as Coach
• Coaching happens within and outside of work; informally and in structured discussions. Leaders today are being asked to bring more of a coaching-approach to their teams and others. In this session, leaders will learn about a coaching mindset and skillset that will allow them to capitalize on identifying strengths, new insights, contributions and blind spots to achieve excellence with those they work with.

Coaching Approach to Leadership

Sir John Whitmore defined coaching as “unlocking people’s potential to maximize their own performance. It is helping them to learn rather than teaching them.” The distinction between coaching and teaching, or coaching and directing/telling someone what to do, is a crucial  one.

After conducting a large-scale research study into leadership coaching, Professor Julia Milner concluded that “most managers do not understand what coaching really is.” Without any form of coaching training, managers tend to take a “micromanaging-as-coaching” approach to interactions with their staff, her research suggests. This approach can ultimately lead to wasted time, energy and money.

Workplaces that embrace a coaching approach to leadership “see definite improvements in terms of retaining staff, reduced conflict, open communication, more job satisfaction and an increased overall level of happiness and productivity.” (Bill Cropper)

We work with leaders and organizations to create and build coaching cultures by providing training opportunities for managers and leaders. This is a 1-2 day program with follow-up practice to instil learning. We cover topics such as how to:

  • Foster a coaching mindset
  • Build a coaching skill set
  • Increase confidence in coaching conversations

We explore coaching skills such as listening and asking questions, as well as coaching attributes such as curiosity, supportiveness, acceptance, focus and commitment. We consider the value of coaching for an organization, and the process of leading to improve individual outcomes and business results.

Our philosophy:

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– Coaching Out of the Box®
What if everyone had coaching skills? Coaching Out of the Box® teaches individuals and organizations to leverage the incredible power of coaching. Coaching is more than a skill; it is a new way of thinking and a new way to approach leadership. It brings about a shift in perspective and gives leaders new tools that are solutions based and better suited to today’s work and work environment. Coaching Out of the Box® can be tailored to suit your schedule, and can be delivered in a day, two half days, or through a weekly teleconference.

You will emerge with a set of coaching skills and a box of coaching tools, plus the option of one-to-one integration coaching sessions following the course to really help “stick” the learning and shift what you want to see. Click here for more information on this program.

What clients are saying about our workshops:

“The work Danae has done with us has been excellent, and the quality exceeded my expectations. Danae was very delightful during the whole process, even when managing a giant amount of data. She was very adaptable, designing materials to meet our specific needs, and clear about when she could make things work. She’s a huge asset!” – Shannon McQuillan, People Development, Urban Systems Limited

“The session allowed me to identify some personal growth needs and how to approach, engage and assist employees in beginning to focus on corporate and personal objectives. I highly recommend this workshop to any Executive Team and Managers as a basis for any team development.” – Bob Harlow, Ministry of Forests and Range, BC