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Success stories 2017-04-22T12:08:04+00:00

10 success stories – with enterprise leaders who used Courage to PowerUP their careers, their teams and enterprise performance to new heights.

Click + to expand the window and read about their success.

Then – imagine what you could PowerUP with Level 5 Leadership in your enterprise. Click here to assess yourself and see if you’re ready >>

Or click here if you’re ready to start a dialogue – that can PowerUP better faster wealth-creation now >>

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This was no dress rehearsal. The investors were ready. The CEO had 12 minutes to pitch and 6 minutes for Q&A. The science was elegant and advanced. So was the business model. It all came down to this – would the investors “get it” and be wow’d? 

No wonder a prominent angel investment group, bringing entrepreneurs from Israel to North America, engaged Courage to sharpen up the pitches and smoothly deal with questions and concerns in a way that raised investor confidence.

No wonder a prominent global engineering firm, putting engineers in front of capital expenditure review boards, engaged Courage to sharpen up the presentations and dramatize the risks that would be mitigated with new fire safety and fraud detection systems.

No wonder a global pharmaceutical company, putting European scientists and physicians in front of North American regulatory and reimbursement hearings, engaged Courage to equip executives respond to tough questions in a direct, fact-based and sympathetic way.

No wonder project managers and product leaders used Courage to rehearse their portfolio review presentations before standing in front of their executive committee and board — knowing their initiatives and careers were on the line.

Each of these enterprise-critical presentations achieved the goals. In each case, management understood – they could not afford to ask, “What more could we have done to wow the investors, woo the regulators or win the business?” It had to hit the mark. And did.

If you need Courage to put your best foot forward – in a natural presentation style – and win support, click here for a PowerUP dialogue >>

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The lead engineer was technically brilliant. She set high standards. She could zero in and find flaws before anyone else. But her people-skills created fear and resentment. And her zero-tolerance for anything less than perfection actually shut people down and discouraged initiative. When someone was needed to head a new complex enterprise-critical project, this engineer was the obvious choice. Until management discovered that no one wanted to work with her.

Fortunately, the CTO decided enough was enough.  He engaged Courage for executive coaching.  With feedback, guidance and mediation, the Lead Engineer turned things around with her team and used her power and prowess to unleash brilliance, ignite a sense of urgency and inspire esprit de corps.  Instead of continuing on the trajectory to a career that was red-lining, she is now a high-potential and is being tapped for plum assignments and fast-tracked for promotion.  Because of the success her teams have achieved – and how much they have grown working with her – people are now asking to be transferred into her Project Teams.

This is success we’ve had with:

  • CEOs and COOs who need to mobilize more support – among employees or their boards
  • Technical experts who need to wrestle down key issues and get risks mitigated
  • Advisors who need to win support for counter-intuitive ideas – or investments
  • Managers who have to raise the bar on performance and quality – quickly
  • Leaders assigned to foreign cultures or unfamiliar professional disciplines

If you see a career that needs to be turned around with growth leadership, click here for a PowerUP dialogue >>

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A global scientific equipment company was poised for growth. But they did not have the benchstrength to promote the next generation of leaders to higher and broader levels of responsibility – or to deal with the demands of a more demanding, complex and competitive market. That’s where Courage came in.

To prepare leaders to step up, lead change, lift standards and orchestrate cross-functional and cross line-of-business activities, the 5 PowerUP Steps provided a perfect roadmap for this company’s Director and AVP candidates.

Our hands-on simulations and live-action rehearsals spiced up the program and provided vivid learn-by-doing skill-building.

Our experts gave thought-provoking keynotes — live and by webinar.

Our executive roundtables gave high-potential up-and-coming leaders an opportunity to share and learn from the corporation’s C-level executives.

PowerUP Leadership profiles gave these high potential executives practical feedback about their impact and showed them what, exactly, they could do to Lead from the Middle, “walk the talk” of company Values and Competencies and orchestrate innovation in a matrix structure.

And action learning delivered a solid ROI with enterprise-critical business outcomes.

If you want your investment in leadership development to retain key talent, equip them to advance, build their skills and deliver a quick ROI, click here for a PowerUP dialogue >>
 

jum4joy-taPortfolio Management was on the defensive. They expected co-operation when they shared market intelligence with the engineers. But the VP Engineering rejected their recommendations. Cynical emails volleyed back and forth – from engineering on one continent to development elsewhere, bypassing Portfolio Managers. Adoption was stagnant. Customers were turning elsewhere for upgrades that the company should have been selling. That’s where Courage came in.

With workshops and peer coaching, Portfolio Managers learned to challenge the engineers – with courage to build an innovation partnership and ignite creativity. They learned to step up and take charge when they faced opposition — to make better decisions together. They learned to ennoble colleagues, transform defensive thinking into generative possibilities, bridge diverse perspectives and personalities. They learned to show up as problem-solvers and accelerators, not critics or nay-sayers.

By Leading from the Middle, the Portfolio Managers:

  • Partnered with other departments to upgrade product specs
  • Passed customer review boards and won over customer advocates
  • Accelerated product adoption by almost a year for an accelerated customer ROIC
  • Generated 2X revenue by cross-selling with other business units
  • Rebranded products with marketing and generated breakthrough sales gains
  • Saved tens of millions of dollars on better and more stable configurations
  • Strengthened their confidence, credibility and personal effectiveness
  • Increased their visibility as high-potentials on the fast-track for promotion

As a leader in a discipline like Marketing, Customer Support, Enterprise Project Management, Finance, Regulatory, HR, Quality, Pharmacoeconomics, Supply Chain, Procurement, Audit, Formulation or others, you too can PowerUP profitable innovation and lift teams above politics, turf battles, hierarchy traps, silo myopia and the bias against creativity.

Click here to start a PowerUP dialogue >>

humanknot_0A start-up landed a co-development deal and received a big up-front payment. They had to scale up quickly to meet aggressive milestones. The CEO had to delegate and empower, rather than continuing to oversee, critique and approve every team decision. That’s where Courage came in.

For the CEO, “courage” no longer meant long hours and solo heroics to cover all the bases and plug all the holes. It now meant hiring the best – bona-fide experts who knew more than she and could open doors that she could not budge. And holding them accountable for results, not just doing their jobs.

For veteran middle managers, “courage” meant sharing data and resources with newcomers, inviting them to critique your work, providing support when they took charge and introduced new practices.  And, for teams on the side of the ocean for the firm was founded, “courage” meant getting past win/lose rivalries and flexing seamlessly to work with colleague in the sister location.

Their growth looked like magic.  But ask this CEO and she’ll tell you that it took a well architected growth plan – and coaching, workshops and personal stretching for the start-up team to:

  • Add talent who could take them forward, not just the easiest-to-find recruits
  • Empower newcomers to challenge and upgrade best practices
  • Sustain a work hard/play hard innovation culture as you add financial controls and quality systems • Enlarge your reach for global multi-site management
  • Orchestrate projects with far more complexity and moving parts
  • Reinvent the CEO’s communication and decision-making rhythms to hold leaders accountable without second-guessing or directing exactly what to do
  • Take initiative and solve problems without waiting for permission or consensus

If you and your CEO face inflection points like these you face as you scale up your enterprise.

Click here to start a PowerUP dialogue >>

MVC-007LField Engineers “just followed orders” and kept customers happy – but their unbillable time made the business unprofitable. When they stuck to their contracts and charged for their service, customers balked and Account Managers capitulated. That’s where Courage came in.

A Lead from the Middle workshop brought Field Engineers and Account Managers together to re-negotiate their hand-offs and cross-functional service agreements. Protocols were customized for 14 different countries and cultural differences on punctuality, face-saving and respect for formal hierarchy. Negotiation skills were upgraded.  After the workshops, new Performance Management systems were introduced to the Regional Managers – to hold teams accountable for profit and drive cross-functional win/win collaboration. In less than a quarter, the enterprise was profitable. Productivity increased 150% and sustained high Net Promoter Scores.

Other clients reinvented their go-to-market strategies and monetized value-adding services. Each time, driving profit took:

  • A team effort from sales, marketing, operations, IT, HR, finance and others
  • A strong and empirically valid business case fine-tuned for local cultures
  • Win/win generative problem solving – to present a united front
  • New and upgraded skills to convert contentious issues into active support
  • Innovative thinking to see what needs your customers will pay a premium to fill after your old product offerings are commoditized
  • Courage – to jazz teams up, step in, reach out and lift everyone’s game

If you need to accelerate strategy-execution, rethink your service mix and drive profit in a competitive market, click here to start a PowerUP dialogue >>

globeilcentreWith an infusion of capital, an innovative biomedical company expanded their development team to include luminaries in four different countries. The scientific and regulatory hurdles were formidable and breakthroughs had to be discovered quickly. There was no time or capital to waste on politics, turf-battles or stopping work so all 30 team members could huddle on a video conference to take a single decision. That’s where Courage came in.

1:1 coaching for Project Orchestrators equipped leaders to re-think old notions about engagement and buy-in – to pick up the pace, use work hours efficiently, take crisper decisions and sharpen each others thinking without getting defensive. Team workshops equipped brilliant scientists and business luminaries to bridge cultural differences – and appreciate the virtues of one culture that was blunt and direct and a second culture that was solicitous and consensus-seeking. The result of this new collaboration was a successful regulatory submission in record time, a defendable patent and a co-development deal worth $150 million to the enterprise. Wow.

Other clients have achieved:

  • Effective collaborations between Israelis and Anglos, Danes and Americans, Koreans and Chinese, Kenyans and South Africans, Kiwis and Australians, Japanese, Dutch and Americans, French, German, Canadians and Americans, Singaporian and Indian – among other cultural differences
  • Best practices to orchestrate and synchronize across time zones
  • Asynchronous information sharing and synchronous decision making
  • Efficient preparation for dossier submissions and proposal presentations

If you need to improve your orchestration across nationalities, timezones, levels of management and disciplines, click here to start a PowerUP dialogue >>

CourageConversation(2)With the stroke of a pen, the old organization structure was retired. Suddenly no one knew where they stood – or how their careers might advance. Goodbye, chains-of-command. Hello, task forces and product teams, initiatives and centres of excellence. Leaders lacked authority to crack the whip and move things forward, but everyone could stop to say, “Whoa! My voice hasn’t been heard!” That’s where Courage came in.

A change-readiness assessment gave centres of excellence feedback about their courage to execute – and a recipe for action with the 5 PowerUP Steps. Lead from the Middle workshops cut through the chaos and clarified roles. Within 6 months, the board was more confident in management’s resource-allocation recommendations. They achieved a 30% improvement in efficiency with collaborative resource management rather than duplication amongst fiefdoms. And were collaborating across lines of business to win larger sales and secure multi-service contracts.

After a year, no one said matrix management was simple. Or felt it made life easier. But engagement scores showed that most leaders thrived on the challenge and enjoyed greater visibility and empowerment, Leading from the Middle. PowerUP Growth Partners has equipped dozens of enterprises to get the most from matrix structures, as:

  • Government agencies now co-ordinate activities instead of litigating disputes
  • Global pharma companies rely on Regulatory, Safety, Finance, Formulation and other disciplines as shared resources
  • Non-core functions are outsourced to providers who do them best
  • Knowledge-sharing is greater as best practices transfer amongst project teams

If matrix management is a reality that requires go-to luminaries to step in, reach out and Lead from the Middle, click here to start a PowerUP dialogue >>

tanightOn paper, the deal looked perfect. Each enterprise needed a presence in the other company’s market. It was touted as a “merger of equals.” But now that they had to work together, they began to jockey for hegemony. Their cultures could not be more different – a scrappy off-shore VC-backed start-up and a spinout from a conservative US corporation. That’s where Courage came in.

Neckties. The dress code brought the conflict to a head. Would they operate as a high-tech fun-house with breakthrough discoveries — or a serious business-minded technology company focused on deals and profits? Would the new President be allowed to show up in jeans or dress formally like the old CEO?

The tension was palpable when the two executive teams first met. “You can’t tell me what to pay in my business unit,” a Founder/VP barked at a Director of HR in tears before the meeting started. Every issue was contentious.  The CEO and President joked politely, but their values clashed – a take-no-hostages bully in jeans and a smooth listen-and-empower leader in a suit and tie. The board wanted both of them retained.

The team came together – with workshops that included Lead from the Middle skill-building and PowerUP Dialogues. They defined a new Vision and Values. They shifted from either/or “who takes charge” standoffs to “what can we learn from each other” exchanges.

With 1:1 coaching and 360-based performance management, the culture of brilliance and initiative eclipsed that of power-politics and compliance.

Then came the work – culling through their two product portfolios to decide what should be funded, shelved or divested. And culling through the talent, to decide was best suited for which positions. If you need to bring teams together and make your integration work, click here for a PowerUP dialogue >>

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With generic products in the market and buyers being time-constrained with little time to talk with sales reps, this life sciences company was getting squeezed for margins – if they got time to present their value proposition at all. Sales reps could no longer rely on “the same old techniques” that had always worked for them before.

No wonder a prominent angel investment group, bringing entrepreneurs from Israel to North America, engaged Courage to sharpen up the pitches and smoothly deal with questions and concerns in a way that raised investor confidence.

No wonder a prominent global engineering firm, putting engineers in front of capital expenditure review boards, engaged Courage to sharpen up the presentations and dramatize the risks that would be mitigated with new fire safety and fraud detection systems.

No wonder a global pharmaceutical company, putting European scientists and physicians in front of North American regulatory and reimbursement hearings, engaged Courage to equip executives respond to tough questions in a direct, fact-based and sympathetic way.

No wonder project managers and product leaders used Courage to rehearse their portfolio review presentations before standing in front of their executive committee and board — knowing their initiatives and careers were on the line.

Each of these enterprise-critical presentations achieved the goals. In each case, management understood – they could not afford to ask, “What more could we have done to wow the investors, woo the regulators or win the business?”  It had to hit the mark. And did.

If you need Courage to put your best foot forward – in a natural presentation style – and win support, click here for a PowerUP dialogue >>