Thinking Partner

A high leverage service to develop your leadership capability and enable you to be more effective at leading complex changes. 


Are you an executive or senior manager responsible for People and Culture? 

Or perhaps, as senior operational manager leading significant changes that may include cultural change? 

Over the last 20 years of working with people like you, I have noticed patterns that appear to have been heightened in these pandemic times. 

  • Your peers, your team and even you, are just so busy. There often doesn’t seem to be time to stop to think, reflect and iterate your strategy. 
  • It can feel lonely leading these changes because some of the changes are needed within the executive team itself.
  • You might be wondering, since you often only have your own perspective, what blind spots you might be overlooking. 

In private moments, some clients also reflect on the enduring courage it takes to lead these changes too. It is never easy! High emotions, difficult conversations and politics are all a part of the territory.

Figure 1: Transformational change involves all three elements 

Two types of work – outer and inner 

There are two types of work to be done when leading adaptive and/or transformational changes.  Each requires your attention and reflection – getting on the balcony before you get on the danced floor. 

1. The outer work – Structural and Cultural.  

The outer work presents significant leadership challenges that require observation, interpretation and experimentation to make progress. Do you have someone you can analyse what is going on with, then help you decide what action to take, when, and with whom? Do you know what success will look like and the type of data you might collect to affirm you are on track?

  • Understand how to analyse what is actually going on now and explore how to act strategically and politically, while optimising your effectiveness. 
  • Identify how to bring people on board and engage them to enable genuine ownership of changes.
  • Applify your efforts through others.
  • Develop startegies to faciltate longer-term ‘stickiness’ of the changes. 
  • Lead change initiatives in a strategic and politically sensitive manner as you challenge the status quo. Remain safe in the process.

These considerations are challenging enough – and they are not sufficient because your default patterns of behaviour may also be limiting you. 

2. The inner work – personal 

The inner work applies to everyone but it’s easy to overlook. It comprises recognising how your own loyalties, role and habitual thinking and behavioural patterns may be limiting you. If you want real changes ‘out there’ you need to start ‘in here’. Your habitual reactions can reduce the amount of freedom you have to act in service to your larger cause because you fall victim to the old patterns such as: 

  • shouldering too much responsibility too.  
  • remaining loyal to long term employees who really need to upskill to be effective. 
  • not engaging broadly enough – perhaps discounting or judging people who then can’t support your efforts.  

Don’t go it alone – work with a uniquely qualified Thinking Partner 

If you are leading a change within your organisation or team, you don’t have to go it alone.  

You can have a confidant on your side. Someone who doesn’t have any vested interests with whom you can strategise. A thinking partner. Someone who cares about you and your success enough to challenge your existing patterns and perspectives to help you grow in ways that support the outcomes you wish to deliver. 

Josie is an internationally recognised professional coach (2009 ICF President’s Award) and is a masterful systemic coach with over 20 years experience. She has helped people like you to lead transformational changes within organisational settings. She has expertise in:  

  • team and group coaching,  
  • facilitation of large groups for adaptation 
  • leadership development for cultural change  and addressing other adaptive issues 
  • leading systemic changes and can mentor you around adaptive leadership and 
  • complexity. 

She also develops other coaches in this sphere, and is an author (Big Little Shifts) and an international speaker in the field. 

Contact us today, for a confidential discussion about your needs to be more effective at making progress on your specific change challenges and develop your own leadership capability in the process. 

“I started working with Josie in December 2020 when being faced with high-level challenges result of organizational changes and resistance from the workforce.

Josie is like a light in the darkness. Her approach, calm, composed and focussed, is unique and person centred, as she assists me keep my eyes on the goal(s) I have.  I am drawing on what I already know and developing new skills and using new theoretical material too.  After a couple of sessions with Josie, my entire outlook changed allowing me to navigate through the difficulties that changes may bring.

 Josie is a much experienced and knowledgeable professional in her field and working with her has equipped me to face situations that come my way in a responsive not reactive manner and most importantly to feel empowered and confident in leading change.”

– General Manager, aged care residential site

The typical package includes: 

  1. An initial meeting to determine how we might best work together and identify your desired outcomes. 
  2. Ten, monthly meetings of approximately 1.5 hours each. 
  3. Integration discussions with CEO or Board as required. 
  4. Thinking Partner resources to uncover your self-limiting patterns (inner work) and analyse the challenge and system (outer work). 
  5. Co-design (with you) of specific facilitative processes to engage people in your organisation. 
  6. Travel to your preferred meeting place to reduce your travelling time, or online sessions as you prefer. 
  7. “On the Balcony” follow-up session three months after the tenth session, to monitor your progress. 
  8. Satisfaction is guaranteed.