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“Jim's ability to listen to my team discuss details of a business problem and then reframe the dialogue for practical and useable solutions has been invaluable to me and a real learning experience for my team.”

Steven Cook, Executive Director, The Arc Mercer, Inc.



The new Executive Director of the The Arc Mercer, Inc. requested assistance in coaching his top management staff on goal setting and linking goals to the budgetary process. He was also interested in reorganizing the Arc Mercer’s Occupational Training Center (OTC) to eliminate a structural operating deficit and improve the quality of skill development training provided to persons with developmental disabilities.

We used an appreciative approach to provided coaching and training to key department directors and staff on SMART goals (specific, measurable, action-based, realistic and time-oriented). We designed and facilitated an appreciative inquiry strategic planning day and a half workshop with department directors and supervisors to identify the core strengths assets and values of the agency and how to leverage them for positive strategic advantage over the course of the next year. SMART goals, action plans and resources, budgetary and external, were established to accomplish the strategic priorities.

Using the appreciative inquiry 4-I cycle, we also worked with the OTC team and front line employees (whole system) to revamp and reorganize the organizational processes and procedures for delivering work skills training for persons with developmental disabilities.

Our success in assisting the Executive Director to find executive level solutions for organizational performance, led to a request for us to facilitate the comprehensive reorganization of the agency’s residential services program encompassing twelve group homes and other supportive residential living units using the same whole system inclusive approach as was used for the OTC reorganization.

We have also assisted and coached key agency staff in designing new curriculum for developing work, socialization and hygiene skills for effectiveness in the workplace for adults with developmental disabilities.

Our executive level perspective enabled us focus on difficult and time consuming organizational business issues freeing the Executive Director address other strategic priorities. Our coaching and strategic planning expertise assisted the management team in creating an environment focused on goals, measures of accountability, and proactive planning to improve services to its clients.