Service and Business Improvement Through People

Maxine leads this side of our work.

When we ask people to work together to deliver services and products they do so immersed in organising structures – hierarchies, groups, teams and communities.

As an organisation development practitioner my work is concerned with how we get things done in a manner that is satisfying, effective and efficient for all. No one wants to waste their time, their energy or their expertise doing things badly. Sometimes the structures we have around us for the purpose of safety, democracy, control and governance hinder as well as help. This is my area of work.

I have had a career long fascination with people and structures, how they interrelate and the impact they have upon each. I work with groups, teams and communities across a range of sectors to support improvement and personal thriving.

Organisation Development is a particular way of change it is based upon the values of participation, ensuring people’s voices are heard and that people, organisations and business can grow and renew. At its simplest level it is about getting people involved in making things better.


I am often asked to consider working alongside teams who find themselves in difficulty.

In both 2013 and 2014 I was listed as a ‘Top 50 Innovator’ by the Health Service Journal for my work over a 15-year period working to support teams in difficulty.

My experience leads me to conclude that within most teams the members have the knowledge about why the team is in difficulty and why they have arrived at this point in their own history. Often the team culture has become one in which speaking out about such issues is not easy to do, and hearing of the difficulty can be even harder. Often the journey to the point of difficulty has been a long one and the dynamics happens over months and years, rather than days and weeks. What teams often struggle with is how to move forward.

My approach to such work is based on supporting all team members to work to understand and own the difficulty. Invariably everyone has played a part either actively or passively, those who have stayed silent and witnessed the difficulty have unwittingly colluded. By creating honest and straight forward conversations which relate to team purpose, business performance, team experience and individual behaviour team members are coached, supported and challenged to explore and contribute to the design and delivery of the improved team. This is achieved using individual, small group and full team interventions. All my work is evaluated.

The situation which led to the shameful care at The Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust is a stain on our national health and care history. I was asked to support this work as part of the Francis Inquiry Forward Look Seminars. This short clips outlines some of the work within teams in difficulty as a corporate level.


I have published work on this subject and you can locate references on my linkedin page or by contacting me

If you would like to know more about my work I offer a free of charge initial consultation as a means of exploring if I can be of service to you and also if we feel we can work effectively together. Please get in touch

Individual Clients

When individuals find themselves in difficult situations at work, it is often due to a coming together of a number of things, rarely is it work alone. Over the years I have learned that people often want a completely confidential service, away from their work place, to work through the issues they face as they strive to be different. My experience with senior personnel ( including many doctors) is that working quietly in the background often makes the difference between being able to remain functioning at work , or not.

A typical pattern of work would be 6 one hour sessions, spread over a six month period, although this should be tailored to suit the circumstances of the client.

Again in this work I use a straight forward approach as a certified coach and licenced psychometrician I can , if so desired, support the client with a range of tools to help them explore the issues they face. Alternatively, and often, clients prefer just plain and honest challenge and support to help them explore how they can be different.

My work with individuals is guided once again by my belief in honest conversations with an appropriate level of challenge to enable the client to find the resilience they have and use it well in the choices they need to make.

Most of my clients come by recommendations from others, however please get in touch if you wish to consider the use of my individual client services.

Developing Organisation Development Capability

OD is about applying the best available behavioural science research, tools and methods to improve business performance. Over the years I have been involved in supporting a number of organisations and many individual practitioners to develop their ability in this work. Developing OD capability is one of my career long passions. If you want more information about the detail of OD I would recommend this excellent (and free to download) toolkit Download Here.

Three day essentials of OD programme I have developed and lead a 3 day ‘Essentials in OD’ programme for a range of clients. Although the programme has a generic structure many clients work alongside me to tailor and deliver the programme in the best way possibl2e for their organisations.

Supporting OD practitioners to develop
I offer a range of support to OD practitioners. This includes mentoring and coaching and also the development of personal learning programmes.

OD projects
I personally undertake a small number of OD projects which help clients build capacity. During 2016 I have been working with a client to develop an approach to assuring the quality of work undertaken by OD practitioners. In this piece of work, we have looked at the global work underway in OD and designed an approach to support OD practitioners to claim and evidence their competency. For the first time in health and social care this will enable practitioners to systematically explore their capability and provide comprehensive evidence of competence to their clients. This work is soon to be published without charge and be widely available. Once available we will provide a link here.

Since 2013 I have moderated the North East Leadership Academy’s OD network. This is a group of 50 practitioners working across the health sector.