Parsons Brinckerhoff : Partnering to build leadership capability

Parsons Brinckerhoff is a global consulting firm assisting public and private clients to plan, develop, design, construct, operate and maintain critical infrastructure. In 2010, the company’s Australian regional headquarters asked Learning Quest to develop a program for 100 senior leaders aimed at building their skills to lead in times of uncertainty and change.

Having used Learning Quest in previous roles, Director of People Deborah Burt knew that she could rely on the company to deliver a solution that was original, innovative, engaging and met the company’s learning requirements.

“Over the past 10 years, I’ve worked with Learning Quest on numerous projects for some very different organisations,” says Deborah. “Connie Henson is quite unique in her ability to understand leadership problems and how best to solve them.”

“I’ve found that as she explores the issues with me and my team, her questions, observations and insights enable us to better describe the real problems that the learning experience must address. She challenges us in the best possible way.”

Deborah says that Connie’s low-key approach can be quite disarming.

“She’s able to connect with all program participants, regardless of their style or personality, making people feel comfortable with the learning process,” says Deborah.

“All participants’ needs are met, even if they’re not in a position to immediately implement program content. I’ve never seen another facilitator who has been able to build relationships so well with such a diverse range of people.”

Deborah says participants and other stakeholders are quite often surprised by just how powerful the Learning Quest programs have been in creating lasting change.

“The most important thing for me and my internal customers is the results,” says Deborah. “The great thing about Learning Quest is their programs make a real difference back in the office.”

“It’s fine for people to walk away from a program or intervention and say it was good/interesting/enjoyable etc. But a program is only truly effective if it changes the business in the way we want it to.”