Boardroom

ORGANIZATIONAL EXCELLENCE

Fortune 500 • Private Equity • Venture Capital

Brooks Darrah, PhD

BROOKS DARRAH, PhD

Brooks is a human performance and growth-focused, trusted advisor to executive sponsors of complex change and people performance across multiple industries.

PhD, Human and Organizational Systems
MS, Organization Development
MA, Human Development
Prosci ADKAR Change Management-certified
CCMP, Certified Change Management Practitioner
ACC, Associate Certified Executive Coach
OHRA Audit, Certified Practitioner

Gurpreet S. Dhillon, JD

GURPREET S. DHILLON, JD

Gurpreet helps senior executives, investors and boards successfully navigate high-stakes, high risk, complex strategic growth initiatives, transformations and turnarounds.

JD, Intellectual Property Law
MSIS, Information Systems Technology
Prosci ADKAR Change Management-certified
PMP, Project Management Professional
Adjunct Faculty, UCLA Extension – Leadership Effectiveness
Graduate Teaching Fellow, George Washington University
OHRA Audit, Certified Practitioner

We guide Senior Executives to optimal business outcomes when faced with complex change, strategic growth challenges and struggling initiatives.

Strategic Change

We help leaders and their teams develop sustainable new behaviors, capabilities and ways of working needed to elevate business performance.

Leadership & Team Performance

We equip VC and PE Investors with rapid foresight and actionable intelligence into team and execution risk for optimal investment decisions and performance.

Investment Advisory

40

Years
Experience

15

Global
Industries

80%

Repeat
Clients

Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences
Adobe
AECOM
Barclays
City of Los Angeles
Creative Artists Agency
DirecTV
Disney
DuPont Pharma
E! Networks
InterContinental Hotels & Resorts
Internal Revenue Service
Johnson & Johnson
Mattel
Nortel Networks
Pacific Life
PayPal
Sony Pictures
State of Alaska
Toyota Financial Services
US Department of Energy
Verizon Wireless
Waste Management
Wells Fargo
20th Century Fox

Our Work

Services Summary

icon_strategic_change

Strategic Change

Complex Change Leadership
  • Change Strategy, Architecture & Execution
  • Executive & Team Change Coaching
  • Change Performance Measurement
Business Transformation
  • Organization Health, Readiness & Risk Audit
  • Transformation Strategy & Architecture
  • Transformation Recovery
Program Turnaround
  • Struggling Initiative Risk & Recovery Audit
  • Recovery Strategy & Solution Architecture
  • Recovery Performance Measurement
icon_leadership-team-performance

LEADERSHIP & TEAM PERFORMANCE

Leadership Performance
  • Board, C-suite & Leadership Alignment
  • Executive & Team Coaching
  • Leader and Team Learning & Development
Organization Effectiveness
  • Cross-Functional Governance & Performance
  • Culture, Engagement & Talent Optimization
  • Innovation & Collaboration, Diversity & Inclusion
Operational Excellence
  • Operational Governance & Performance
  • Organization Design
  • Business Process Optimization
icon_investment_advisory

INVESTMENT ADVISORY

Venture Capital Risk Mitigation
  • Rapid Organizational Health & Scaling Risk Audit
  • Leadership & Team Performance
  • Board & Management Team Governance
Private Equity Portfolio Performance
  • Organizational Health & Capability Assessment
  • Transformation Readiness & Execution
  • Acceleration Strategy, Execution, Performance
Merger & Acquisition Effectiveness
  • Organizational Health & Risk Audit
  • Integration Strategy & Execution
  • Integration Performance Measurement
Listening

Succeed With DarrahDhillon

Internal Think Tank Yields 10 Solutions to Urgent Market Threats

Situation: A Media Giant Must Respond to Rapidly Emerging Competition

Facing massive disruption in how viewers consume entertainment content, this television broadcaster’s President needed new solutions to urgent existential problems. Shifting revenue models, disruptive technology and the diversification of entertainment content options spawned a rapidly accelerating turf war for viewers in which internet content providers were gaining ground. How could traditional broadcasters tap employees’ valuable knowledge in new ways to create viable solutions to these threats?

Approach: Deploying a Dynamic Cross-Functional Think Tank

Applying leading edge cognitive psychology and group dynamics theory and practice, our team deployed a think tank to elevate the company’s ability to address the disruptive market threats it faced. More than 150 employees over three years joined small, cross-functional/level teams to evaluate the problem posed, generate new ideas, test options, measure feasibility and develop actionable plans. Following executive board review, high-potential solutions were funded and employees were offered discretionary time—potentially outside their assigned functional areas—to bring the ideas to life.

Results: From Survival Mindset to Strategic Solutions + New Capabilities

From the efforts of their own employees, ten viable solutions were launched and with full executive sponsorship. The benefits of the Think Tank went beyond the specific solutions developed and by design. Company executives noted a profound shift in engagement, with overwhelming employee desire to join the Think Tank and voluntarily take on the additional work. Employees in roles ranging from administrative staff to senior executive leadership reported that skills and experiences gained in the program deeply benefited them professionally and personally. The Think Tank’s focus on learning benefits of different thinking styles, optimal problem-solving practices and improving group collaboration had an immediate and sustainable impact beyond addressing the urgent strategic challenges they sought to resolve.

Global IT Division Rapidly Transforms to Thrive with New Leadership

Situation: A Sudden Leadership Void, 12 Countries and a Ticking Clock

A major film and television studio chose to move to an outsourced, offshore IT model to reach aggressive cost-cutting targets. Charged with designing and delivering its own transformation, the IT division had just nine months to reduce operating costs by 50% and improve service levels in faltering areas. And two additional factors made the situation deeply personal: a 40% reduction in staff – many of them loyal, tenured, and highly skilled – was required, plus they were reeling from the unexpected resignation of a much admired and trusted CIO. Retaining the brain trust and maintaining morale of key employees facing termination was paramount to a successful transition.

Approach: Customized Lean Transformation and Just-In-Time Strategy

Without internal change leadership and management capability fit for the challenge, we quickly deployed a lean OCM task force to design the new operating model. And without time to execute a conventional transformation program, we employed a ’just-in-time’ change strategy that not only addresses needs of the offshore transition, but also addressed operational debt that had been plaguing IT for years. Given the heightened personal sensitivity and instability of impacted employees, we prioritized frequent, high-touch communications, engagement and training for employee and partner teams in 12 countries.

Results: A Successful Transformation Sets the Stage for New Levels of Performance

At the nine-month mark, the transition was completed to plan and business customers were firmly on board. Leaders were equipped to effectively guide the new organization into its future, with gold standard operations and talent development processes. The newly promoted CIO thrived with the support of our weekly tactical coaching sessions. The leadership team adopted the engagement, recognition, and innovation programs hatched in the transformation as the new normal for appreciating and retaining their staff. And employees, though weary, emerged with new confidence from their success in spite of the difficult journey to get there.

From Failed Transformation to Award-Winning Change Leadership

Situation: Executives Struggle With Overwhelming Internal Resistance While Under M&A Pressure

Facing a rapidly shifting competitive landscape with new threats arising out of consolidations, leadership at a global education subsidiary needed to prepare for a strategic acquisition expected to double revenue in four years. Everything lined up on paper. But the tight-knit legacy workforce that had helped the company maintain its leading market position for over a decade resisted and rejected the transformation for the second time. With investor confidence, market position and share price at stake, leadership had only one chance left to succeed.

Approach: A Holistic Transformation Strategy Elevated by Executive Coaching

Our rigorous organizational health assessment revealed subtle leadership and culture dynamics that had enabled resistance across the organization. When presented with assessment data highlighting counterproductive behavior patterns in the executive team, they embarked on a coaching program calibrated to the unique dynamics at play and that aligned to the transformation program’s goals. The resulting shifts in their behavior promoted a culture change in which employees, who initially saw themselves as victims of the change, gradually assumed ownership of it.

Results: A Stunning Turnaround Capped with a Global Change Leadership Award

The redesigned organization structure, governance model and business processes enabled successful acquisition and integration of the new vertical. Efficiency gains of 30% in resource utilization and similar gains in product release cycle times were enduring hallmarks of the transformation. The key to success, however, was the transformation of a divisive workforce into teams of engaged change owners who collaborated to break silos and move the organization they loved to new levels. Nearly a year after transformation, the stunning reversal of fortune was recognized by the parent company when the coveted Global Change Leadership award was presented to the executive sponsor of the transformation.

Fortune 100 Global HR Org Shines Despite Major Obstacles

Situation: Competing Priorities and Conflicting Norms Create Compliance Barriers

Under threat of heavy regulatory penalties, a 700 person global HR organization needed to implement a sophisticated enterprise risk management (ERM) program within an aggressive six month timeline. Due to breakneck growth, the organization struggled with an overload of competing priorities, operational silos, conflicting governance and accountability standards, and low process maturity. Internal resource bandwidth and lack of risk management experience added further complexity.

Approach: Adaptable Lean Change Deployed to Integrate New Processes

Our rapid organizational assessment and readiness expertise enabled leadership to align around a strategic roadmap and execution plan that accounted for their unique needs. A conventional approach would add more process and governance layers to already overburdened and widely dispersed global teams. Therefore, we designed creative ways to integrate rigorous ERM governance practices into existing ways of working so that high impact results could be achieved with a light touch.

Results: HR Receives Rare Rave Reviews as an Enterprise Leader

After designing and leading a lean and focused, but highly adaptable change program, the organization successfully integrated and operationalized compliant ERM capability on budget and ahead of the ambitious schedule. As meaningful for leadership and the team, the HR ERM program was recognized across the enterprise as a model for other functional organizations that struggled with ERM integration.

Investment Advisory

We equip VC and PE Investors with rapid foresight and actionable intelligence into team and execution risk for optimal investment decisions and performance.

Leadership & Team Performance

We help leaders and their teams develop sustainable new behaviors, capabilities and ways of working needed to elevate business performance.

Strategic Change

We guide Senior Executives to optimal business outcomes when faced with complex change, strategic growth challenges and struggling initiatives.

GURPREET S. DHILLON, JD

Gurpreet helps senior executives, investors and boards successfully navigate high-stakes, high risk, complex strategic growth initiatives, transformations and turnarounds. With over 20 years as a trusted advisor to senior executives of Fortune 500 enterprises, start-ups and non-profits, he brings clarity, cohesion and confidence to complex change across diverse industries globally.

JD, Intellectual Property Law
MSIS, Information Systems Technology
Prosci ADKAR Change Management-certified
PMP, Project Management Professional
Adjunct Faculty, UCLA Extension – Leadership Effectiveness
Graduate Teaching Fellow, George Washington University
OHRA Audit, Certified Practitioner

BROOKS DARRAH, PhD

With the rare ability to advise at the highest organizational levels and lead strategic implementation across functions and levels, Brooks is a human performance and growth-focused, tech-savvy, and deeply trusted advisor to leaders across multiple industries. Brooks has 20+ years of experience in Organization Development, Change Leadership and Management, and Executive Coaching.

PhD, Human and Organizational Systems
MS, Organization Development
MA, Human Development
Prosci ADKAR Change Management-certified
CCMP, Certified Change Management Practitioner
ACC, Associate Certified Executive Coach
OHRA Audit, Certified Practitioner