Sean is the founder and director of Pygmalion (est. 2001), a Cape Town based Organisation & Leadership Development consultancy and coaching practice.
His enduring interest lies in the application of core principles and models in Personal & Social Psychology to assist senior managers in understanding and developing more effective leadership practices in response to our rapidly changing organizational, social and economic context. He works within a Systems Thinking framework, and has developed practical models, processes, tools and methodologies to provide creative and innovative interventions to address ‘messy problems’. His passion is working with executives and senior leadership teams who are required to lead their organisations through change and uncertainty, to innovate and develop more adaptive responses to manage the impact of exponential change.
He has more than 20 years experience working with leaders (specifically executive leadership teams with strategy implementation and change leadership) and their organizations in multi-national corporations operating in Africa across multiple sectors (Beverage, Confectionary & Foods, Retail, Commodities, Mining, Financial Services, Professional Services, Packaging, Pharmaceutical and State Owned Enterprises). He has worked with clients in Namibia, Swaziland, Ghana, Kenya, Egypt, UAE, Sweden, United Kingdom, Turkey and France – each assignment requiring a consideration of the local context, organizational culture and industry/sector realities that has resulted in a deeper understanding of the broader systemic conditions that impact on the challenges and opportunities of the clients whom he works with.
His assignments have ranged from: coaching executive leaders (individuals and executive teams); consulting on the design and delivery of specific OD programs; partnering with internal task teams to implement large scale change initiatives (and assisting leaders through such transitions); facilitating business planning processes (strategy development and execution) linked to goal alignment processes; supervision and mentorship support to client owned Talent & Development Centers; bespoke executive Recruitment (goodness-of-fit) and finally, delivering seminars, workshops and training modules to a range of clients
A key interest and focus of his executive coaching work the past 10 years has been providing “Executive Leadership Team Journeys” (group coaching programmes) as an integral part of major organisational (and business) transformation initiatives. These programmes typically have an 18 month to 2 year duration, and are characterised by a series of Leadership Retreats, hosting top-3 tier leadership summits, group coaching sessions, and alignment with more formal leadership development programmes for these executives. His approach remains one of a collaborative partnership with the client/organization (and other 3rd party consultants) rather than providing short-term interventions. He has also committed himself to pro bono work in leadership development in the secondary and tertiary education sector to increase greater collaborative leadership practices to address the challenges of social development and to adapt to the changes in education – both pedagogical and administrative. Sean was instrumental in establishing two professional consulting businesses, has been a shareholder and partner of a strategy & organisational development consultancy, and founded his own business Pygmalion in 2001.
He has an MA in Psychology (Master thesis was on Psychoneuroimmunology) and trained as a Health Psychologist with an early interest in multidisciplinary research and collaboration to ensure patient centric healthcare. Registered as a Counseling Psychologist with Health Professional Council of SA (HPCSA) in 1992; Sean is a Board Certified Coach (BCC); a Faculty member and Leadership Solutions Associate of Centre for Creative Leadership (CCL); and is also an Associate of Mannaz (based in Denmark). He is also a member of a number of professional and peer networks, including Tällberg Foundation (Sweden) and Leading Ventures (Netherlands).
He lives in St James, Cape Town, with his wife Ivana (Rolfing, Massage Therapist & Yoga Teacher), daughter Nina and son Samuel, loves communing with nature, is a keen hiker, mountain biker, surf ski paddler & surfer, and is a ‘still-to-be-recorded’ musician and song writer