Building a Learning Organization

A new organization led by a charismatic leader, new associate director and a young staff needed to build a strong culture and learn how to grow the organization while tackling a tough research agenda and seeking large federal grants to support the organization.
We began with several retreats to ground the organization in creating the mission, vision and values. Using Myers-Briggs, the organization developed a common language to communicate around differences. From the beginning, they established the goal to be a learning organization. This mindset affected everything, from the way they approached grant-making and large projects, to the way they dealt with conflict and accountability, evaluated work, celebrated achievement and developed staff. In addition to coaching the senior leaders, Lisa facilitated planning sessions, development retreats, and special meetings on growth and conflict.
The organization grew from 7 to 21 employees in 3 1/2 years, received over $7.5 million grants over 5 years, and has been nationally recognized by National Institutes of Mental Health, American Public Health Association, and others. There is strong commitment within the organization to growth, to mentoring, to contributing.



As one of the leaders of a rapidly growing research center, I have benefited greatly from Lisa’s insight and expertise. Her knowledge, patience and compassion have helped us all embrace the concept of a learning organization. She has provided us with the necessary tools to realistically and honestly assess our leadership skills and grow, both personally and professionally. Under her guidance, we have adopted new strategies to manage long term planning, staff development and organizational change. She has been an invaluable asset to our group.

Norah Mulvaney-Day
Associate Director
The Center for Multicultural Mental Health Research

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