MARC LEVY (FOUNDER / DIRECTOR)
With more than 500 Board and executive team strategy workshops and two decades of management consulting under his belt, Marc has seen pretty much anything that can happen when a room full of smart people grapple with the challenges facing their organisation.
Marc’s areas of speciality and examples of client experience include:
- Strategy and planning: Running a third consecutive strategic planning process for one of Australia’s largest super funds. Leading processes to cascade corporate strategies, initiatives and metrics through to business and divisional plans and individuals’ performance development plans.
- Vision and purpose: Assisting clients in professional services, financial services, consumer and industrial products, and the social sector to create galvanising company statements that provide context for strategic decision making and act as a rallying point for employees.
- Growth: Leading projects centred on growth options evaluation, marketing spend effectiveness, merger candidate qualification, new product and market feasibility, and brand strategy.
- Organisation: Working with clients on agile strategy, agile resourcing and agile ways of working, with a particular focus on resource allocation effectiveness and financial budgeting.
Clients have described Marc’s style as ‘facilitation with an edge’ because of his ability to stimulate and maintain high levels of participant engagement while discussing complex and often contentious issues. By focusing on results, listening hard, and synthesising and shaping content on his feet, Marc is able to move participants through an enormous amount of content in a relatively short period of time, and leave groups feeling confident and empowered as they see their contributions turned into actionable next steps.
Marc has written more than 20 articles on topics relating to strategy and planning and facilitation and has a PhD from the University of Melbourne.
ZOE PAPPAS (PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT & FACILITATOR)
Clients describe Zoe as having a special knack for making workshop participants feel simultaneously relaxed and energised, a feat she achieves with methodical preparation, a carefully choreographed mix of content and activity, and an exceptional eye for detail.
Zoe has extensive experience in leading strategy, planning, growth and organisation projects in the financial services, retail, healthcare and government sectors.
- Strategy and planning: Facilitating a steering committee (including a diverse range of stakeholders and views) as they oversaw a critical organisation change. Developing a strategy and organisation design for a disruptive specialty retailer with a promising growth trajectory. Co-developing the strategy for a statutory authority with the organisation’s top 60 leaders, testing the robustness of their strategic pillars and exploring the cross-organisation collaboration needed to deliver them. Working closely with a highly motivated leadership team to consider key strategic questions relating to their aspiration, scope choices, key areas of competitive advantage, and the capabilities required to be successful.
- Vision and purpose: Working with several organisations to help board and executive teams rethink their vision and purpose statements to help guide strategic decision making.
- Values, behaviours and culture: Developing a number of inclusive processes including with an emergency services organisation, a major trade union, a publishing company and a mutual financial institution to articulate and update their values and address aspects of their culture. Facilitating a series of interactions with staff from across a Victorian government utility to articulate the values that are core to the organisation and the expectations of leaders across the business.
- Growth: Working with a large client team to transform a financial services organisation’s approach to growth strategy, from executing priority growth options to supporting a subcommittee of senior directors to advance the merger agenda.
- Organisation effectiveness: Leading organisation redesign projects for wealth management and telecommunications industry clients. Working with marketing, business development and operations teams to improve the effectiveness of a client’s structure, processes, resource allocation and performance management.
Zoe has a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Melbourne and an MBA from Melbourne Business School as well as 15 years experience in operational, management and consulting roles across industries as diverse as publishing, IT securities and marketing.
DEBBIE WILLIAMS (PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT & FACILITATOR)
Debbie is a Principal Consultant and Facilitator with 18 years’ experience across a range of industries including health care, community services and financial services.
Debbie is an expert in strategy, operational and financial analysis, performance improvement and organisation design. Her recent projects have included:
- Strategic planning: Assisting a large disability services provider’s Board and Executive team develop a strategy that responds to external challenges raised by changes in government policy. Developing the Council plan and Business plan for one of Victoria's largest metropolitan councils. Worked with the executive team and Board over a three month period to articulate a health care organisation’s purpose and identify how they could best meet the healthcare needs of their community, develop a clear strategic direction and build a roadmap for implementing the new strategy.
- Growth strategy: Helping the board of a major institutional investor agree on a growth strategy and build a new management structure, working from strategy, through capabilities, to PDs and KPIs.
- Organisation design: Conducting organisation re-design and alignment processes with clients in the healthcare and professional services industries developing organisation design archetypes, leadership structures and accountability frameworks.
- Governance: Working with directors of a professional services company to diagnose governance challenges in the partnership structure and collaborate to establish the framework of an improved leadership structure. Assisting a large tertiary institution to review its governance and decision making arrangements. This process was inclusive and included significant stakeholder engagement.
In addition to her consulting activities Debbie is an experienced non-executive director and fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Debbie was previously an engagement manager at Booz & Co. She has a MBA (with distinction) from one of the world’s leading programs at INSEAD, a masters of operations research from Auckland University and a bachelor of commerce from Canterbury University.
ANDY BAKER (SENIOR CONSULTANT & FACILITATOR, PROFESSIONAL NETWORK)
Andy is a member of Strategic Facilitators network of professional facilitators.
After 15 years consulting to corporates, SMEs and non-profits with a focus on strategy development, large projects, and consumer research, Andy has a confident and forthright facilitation style and is known among his colleagues for his thoughtful preparation, credibility with senior teams, and strong quantitative skills.
Andy’s recent projects include:
- Strategy: Developing the Council plan and Business plan for one of Victoria's largest metropolitan councils. Facilitating a strategy process for a emerging telecommunications carrier. Supporting the senior team of project management services firm as they integrate and align to the parent company. Supporting multiple financial services institutions in their annual strategy and planning processes.
- Co-design: Working closely with federal government department and multiple not-for-profit organisations to co-design the business cases to gain funding through a federal government grant initiative.
- Stakeholder alignment: Working with a Victorian statutory authority to facilitate the Ministerial Roundtable with major food producers, supermarkets and food rescue organisations on the topic of reducing food waste in Victoria.
Andrew began his career at Accenture, where he was involved in strategy engagements in Australia and Asia and received training in strategic and financial analysis in France and the United States. Andrew holds a Bachelor of Commerce, a Bachelor of Science and a Diploma of Modern Languages in Indonesian from the University of Melbourne.
Andy is passionate about environmental sustainability, and in his ‘spare time’ runs a market-leading consumer research survey that collects and publishes data on consumer and social trends relating to sustainability, natural health and wellness.
CHIARA LAWRY (ASSOCIATE PRINCIPAL & FACILITATOR)
Chiara Lawry is an Associate Principal and Facilitator with Strategic Facilitators. Chiara has deep experience in the public and social sectors, bringing more than ten years working in and for government and the social sector as a strategy consultant and a policy adviser.
Prior to joining Strategic Facilitators, Chiara worked at the Boston Consulting Group where she was a core member of the public sector practice. Chiara was a Policy Adviser at the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet in Canberra where she worked under the Rudd and Gillard Governments on health reform and international policy.
Beyond the public sector Chiara also has consulting experience across a broad range of industries including financial services, industrial goods and the retail industry. She has experience in strategy, organisational transformation and business development and is passionate about supporting her clients to solve their toughest problems.
Chiara has a deep passion for social impact and has worked with a number of local and international NFP organisations. She was a founding volunteer and board member at the Oaktree Foundation. She has worked with indigenous organisations in the Cape York Peninsula and the Tiwi Islands and serves on the board of Environmental Justice Australia. Chiara has been awarded a scholarship to participate in the Victorian Government’s Women’s Leadership Program for 2019.
Chiara has a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Laws (Hons) from the Australian National University and a Masters of Public Administration from Columbia University.
LORA VAIOLETI (ASSOCIATE PRINCIPAL)
Lora Vaioleti is an associate principal at Strategic Facilitators. She has deep experience in international strategic consulting, research and management.
Prior to joining Strategic Facilitators, Lora was a project leader at Boston Consulting Group where she worked with public, private and third sector clients on service and operating model transformation, and policy and strategy development.
Prior to BCG, Lora worked for the NZ Government at the UN in New York, covering international development and humanitarian crises. She has held positions with not-for-profits and research organisations in the US and NZ and led international research – including for UNESCO – on issues relating to of poverty, climate change and human mobility. Lora has worked as an academic, social media and marketing strategist and physiotherapist. She is a Fulbright Scholar, and completed a Master of Management with a focus on sustainability at the University of California, Irvine.
ABHISHEK CHHIKARA (SENIOR ASSOCIATE & FACILITATOR)
Abhishek is a Senior Associate and Facilitator with strong quantitative and analytical skills. He has a particular interest in helping clients translate their strategy into financial performance. He has demonstrated creative problem solving skills and an ability to communicate complex ideas to clients effectively.
Abhishek’s recent projects include:
- Strategy and planning: Helping a large non-profit financial services organisation to refresh its long-term strategy. Co-developing measurement, monitoring and review processes for a prominent Victorian non-profit organisation. Assisting a financial services organisation to cascade their strategy throughout the organisation.
- Growth strategy: Working with a non-profit disability employment service provider to develop a growth strategy and business plan. Helping a client team to identify and prioritise potential opportunities for inorganic growth through mergers and partnerships.
- Industry and competitor analyses: Developing financial models to assist a client with its pricing strategy. Conducting industry analyses to help clients understand the changing environment and the implications for their organisations.
Abhishek holds a Bachelor of Engineering from Monash University with First Class honours.
MEGAN McLEAN (FACILITATOR)
Megan has twenty-five years experience in facilitation, communication and stakeholder engagement spanning both corporate and not-for-profit settings, and is a practical and pragmatic facilitator with a focus on useful outputs that create value.
She has worked with clients facilitating strategic planning workshops, stakeholder engagement processes and community consultation programs.
Megan’s recent experience includes:
- Stakeholder engagement and community consultation: Working with a state government agency to conduct a state-wide stakeholder consultation program to develop a uniform campaign tackling Victoria’s recycling challenge. Facilitating a series of workshops for a state government department as part of a wider inter-agency approach with an aim to improve the educational outcomes for vulnerable children.
- Strategy and planning workshop facilitation: Facilitating a planning workshop for the divisional management team of a global catering company to agree areas of focus, goals and initiatives in a period of change. Facilitating a planning workshop for the management group of a large Melbourne-based professional services firm to develop an action plan to increase employee engagement. Working with the project team of a large Victorian infrastructure project to agree 12 month priorities and develop detailed operational plan for that period.
- Team effectiveness and alignment: Working with a national sales team of an industry-leading manufacturer to distil customer service principles into daily behaviours guiding all customer interactions. Working closely with a team from a large metropolitan council to connect the roles of team members to their purpose, including the development of goals, key initiatives and corresponding measures that will drive team’s success.
Megan has been described as a straight shooter who gets things done. Having owned businesses, worked for large corporate entities and consulted across a variety of sectors she brings a number of different perspectives. She also thinks there should be a few laughs along the way!
She is a communications coach who teaches individuals to connect authentically with their audience with the purpose of changing both hearts and minds. Holding a Bachelor of Arts in literature and professional writing, and a postgraduate certificate in journalism, she was also a founding member of the Family Advisory Council at the Royal Children’s Hospital – staying involved for a further four years.
Megan is a keen baker, pursuer of zero waste and runner of half marathons.
JESS COSSENS (ASSOCIATE & FACILITATOR)
Jess is an Associate and Facilitator, who works closely with client teams to conduct engaging and effective projects. She has exceptional attention to detail and a methodical approach to solving client’s challenges.
Jess has worked on many strategy consulting projects across a variety of sectors including not-for-profits, government, financial services, pharmaceuticals and education.
Jess’s recent engagements include:
- Stakeholder engagement: Planning and co-facilitating inclusive stakeholder engagement processes, ensuring all perspectives are expressed and heard. Using forums to foster innovation in client organisations. Facilitating a workshop for a large number of stakeholders to introduce a statewide project and provide stakeholders with an opportunity to scope and influence future policy.
- Strategy and planning: Working with large groups to cascade strategic decisions through to all staff. Providing forums for staff to present their perspectives and have a role in shaping the strategic direction of an organisation. Engaging with clients to diagnose the internal and external factors impacting upon their organisations and using this knowledge to inform the development of their strategic plans.
- Co-design and design thinking: Facilitating a co-design process for a new insurance product by engaging potential new customers through the design journey; co-creating ideation and innovation processes using design thinking methodology in the healthcare, insurance and government sectors.
Jess represents that rare mix of analytical thinking and creative expression. With degrees in Mechanical Engineering (first class honours) and Arts (Drama and Theatre Studies) from Monash University, she appreciates bold visionary thinking supported by solid evidence.
TOM DAVIDSON (SENIOR ASSOCIATE & FACILITATOR)
Tom joined Strategic Facilitator’s professional network in 2018. He is a Facilitator with over 11 years’ experience in developing and implementing growth led strategies, customer experience programs and corporate development. His personal strengths include his strong commercial acumen, stakeholder engagement and strategic thinking skills gained from his experience working at PwC (including Strategy&), Bankwest, iiNet Limited and more recently as a freelance strategy consultant with top tier clients.
Tom’s recent projects include:
- Strategy and planning: Facilitating the development of a three year strategic plan for a not for profit organisation focusing on disadvantaged and homeless youth. Developing a strategic plan for an indigenous education not for profit in response to Gonski funding reforms. Facilitating a strategic planning process for a WA based not for profit focusing on transition to NDIS. Undertaking a strategic review of an industrial wholesaler’s profitability including developing initiatives for performance improvement.
- Growth: Completing a product strategy review for a NSW disability services organisation. Leading the development of a national communication’s business Wholesale strategy to achieve $950m incremental revenue over 5 years, while improving customer experience and optimising capital deployed. Supporting the successful $3.2m capital raising in seed funding from Government, Corporate and high net worth individuals (modelling, IM and investor presentations) for a social enterprise start-up targeting matching recent migrants with perspective employers and social services
Tom holds a Bachelor of Laws (1st Class Hons), Bachelor of Commerce (with Distinction) from Deakin University, and a Masters of Applied Finance.
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