These case studies highlight the results executives, managers, business owners and their organizations get out of working with Nicole Mason, and exemplify the range of clients she serves. Read on to find out how you can benefit from our services, and what clients say about Nicole’s consulting and trainings.
Problem: Project and timeline oriented mid-sized company with schedule slips on several projects across the company. Team conflicts were already identified as a contributing factor, along with other known and unknown obstacles. The company was under pressure from its enterprise customers to reign in project timelines and improve project management and reporting. Additionally, the company has diversity challenges, as most employees are male and white.
Solution: Identified and addressed a variety of other factors contributing to project delays and roadblocks, including communication breakdowns amongst functional groups and between management and their employees. Employee performance issues were discovered by Nicole’s neutral-party interviews with team members. Facilitated team discussions and involved direct managers, to resolve interpersonal conflicts. Nicole also provided trainings and coaching to help managers resolve those issues and develop the employees for success. Not only did projects get back on track with project schedules, the neutral-facilitated meetings promoted open communication and collaborative problem solving. Employees at all levels benefited from management training combined with operational teambuilding focused on building a sense of true teamwork, not just a group of colleagues that occasionally do something organized for fun. To attract and retain a more diverse pool of employees, a flexible project assignment model was instituted. This minimized the burden and expense of business travel, while creating more interesting, varied work and providing travel opportunities only to those who wanted it.
"Everyone is amazed at the milestones our team has achieved since working with Nicole. She was able to quickly identify the source of our delays and other issues, and propose workable solutions. The fact that she had the skills and expertise to guide us step-by-step through implementing those solutions, made all the difference though. She has a knack for streamlining operations and driving action." VP, Legal Department
Problem: The owner of a growing real estate management company was struggling to find time to hire additional employees he needed, as well as develop processes to systemize and scale his operations, to serve additional clients and increase revenues. He was also noticing performance problems with existing employees, but uncertain of how to address the issue and uncomfortable managing people.
Solution: Nicole provided a roadmap with time management guidance and realistic timeframes for hiring new employees. She identified a long list of specific tasks the owner could delegate to his employees, and noticed that at least 20% of his time was spent on administrative work that could be given to a low cost administrative employee. Leveraging Nicole’s operations and management experience, and her weekly accountability coaching, two excellent new employees were hired within two months. Nicole facilitated a strategic team meeting to bring all of the employees together with the owner to talk about what they do, discuss challenges and brainstorm process improvements. Out of this, everyone came together as a team with a better understanding of expectations and how to best work together to get things done in a timely and accurate manner. The owner was able to reallocate his time to work on the business, including establishing and improving processes to serve clients better and building relationships to bring in more clients and revenue.
"I love talking with Nicole- she’s direct, smart and full of great advice. My business has grown about 20% in the last 6 months since I started working with her. Things are running more smoothly in my office now and I’m actually able to take time off and have a life outside my business. I’m becoming a better manager thanks to her guidance. The team meeting she facilitated was extremely productive and helpful- actions and improvement projects were identified with owners and deadlines assigned, and workloads were reallocated while addressing performance and process issues. I plan to do that type of meeting quarterly, with her facilitation, to keep my team and business on track." Sean McCarthy, Business Owner
Financial Services Firm:
Problem: An established independent financial advisor, who had been in business for over 25 years, was struggling to grow his client base and manage his employees. Having employees over the years was always a challenge and headache that he was not able to solve himself. He was constantly stressed and the business felt like a struggle, zapping the pleasure out of what he enjoyed about the work and helping people.
Solution: As a licensed professional with over 17 years of management experience and corporate training, Nicole provided management coaching that proved invaluable. Within one year, Nicole helped him: 1. Release an underperforming admin/office manager and hire a trustworthy, dependable replacement, who performed better than the former employee and took on more responsibilities to improve office systems and enable better service and communication for clients; 2. Improve another employee’s performance by establishing a detailed plan with actions and timeframes to address the issues and evaluate the employee’s progress. That employee is now a valuable member of his team; 3. Develop teamwork, accountability and quality amongst all employees, which gave the principal more time to bring in more clients and work on strategic, high value aspects of his business, which resulted in 30% growth. Now this wealth manager has a dream team of staff helping him grow his business, serve has clients better and enjoy his business as well as time off for weekends and vacations.
"Working with Nicole, I am on track to grow my business by another 30% this year, on top of last year’s 30%, which I could not have achieved without Nicole’s sage advice and support. Nicole is an excellent business and management coach, who does not miss a beat keeping me focused on what matters most, and she also really cares about her clients. Nicole has even given me scripts, as well as tips and suggestions, to help me with difficult conversations with employees and clients. I have had other coaches do this for me, but their suggestions did not work out well. Nicole’s ideas have all been right on target. She helps me have powerfully engaging and productive conversations in my business. Everyone on my staff appreciates her insights and thoughtful approach to our quarterly strategic meetings that she facilitates- we get a lot of value from those highly productive half-day meetings. I see Nicole as an extension of my team- she really understands my business and industry, as well as business operations and management in general." Peter Johnson, PW Johnson Wealth Management