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purposeful positioning coaching

We enable transformations with Purpose, for brands, leaders and teams.


We help to build transformational leadership in organisations, through Executive Coaching, Team Development and Leadership Retreats


We support the transformation of businesses by identifying and owning a Purposeful Positioning that excites consumers and stakeholders.  


It all starts with a conversation and an exploration, perhaps at a round table and holding a hot cuppa.

Why ‘Laughing Phoenix'?  

The phoenix is synonymous with transformation. Legend tells of the mythical bird that threw itself onto a funeral pyre to begin life afresh every 500 years.  


In organisations, as in wider life, change is inevitable.  We believe that tomorrow’s winners will be those businesses that embrace change, find a compelling Purpose and take a broad perspective on the impacts of transformation.  This is the future we want to create with you.

Catalysing and facilitating choiceful transformation



Transforming business via Purposeful Positioning

We believe that clients and consumers can be engaged more holistically by developing Purposeful Positioning. This is something at the core of your organisation / brand that goes beyond addressing functional consumer needs and helps answer questions like “How does buying this product / service show my support for issues in the wider world?”

Consumers are becoming more sophisticated in their purchase decision-making and are wanting to know more about the wider personality of the brand: what is it doing socially, economically and environmentally? 

Organisations and brands can have a worldly relevance that is deeper than their products.  Those that can provide this deeper fulfilment, and communicate it in an inspiring way, are rewarded by consumers ... and have better-motivated employees.

"Any business that fails to have sustainability at its heart won’t be around in 10 years’ time.”

There’s rarely a straight line to the future.  Indeed, look where ‘straight line’ thinking took some organisations:


“We don't need you. You haven't got through college yet.”

Hewlett-Packard's rejection of Steve Jobs


“We won’t have more than 1 million cars as we will run out of chauffeurs”                                                                   Karl Benz

To go beyond default ‘straight line’ thinking, we use our Futurescope™ tool, scanning future trends to make strategic decision-making more effective.  We consider how drivers such as these might affect your future:

• 10.9 billion people?

• Aging populations?

• Power shift to Asia?

• Networked consumers?

• Greater transparency?
• Sustainability?

• Artificial intelligence?

• Finite resources?

Our Purposeful Pulse™ tool can help to build your business with Purpose at the centre of your operations.  This tool is a guided process, that works with your existing agency partners, opinion-formers, NGOs, etc., to create an appropriate ‘beat’, in the heart of your organisation, that resonates with external and internal audiences.

Purposeful Positioning can help consumers and brands to journey around this virtuous circle:

purposeful pulse virtuous circle brand purpose



Today’s Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous (VUCA) world, with its increasing pace of change, presents many daunting challenges. With all the ‘noise’, it can be hard for leaders to strike the balance between what needs doing and how it should be done. And there can be conflicting requirements to drive performance in the short term while creating a different kind of culture to realise dreams in the long term.

Against this backdrop, we can work with you and your leadership to design and deliver:


  • Leadership development programmes tailored to your strategic business objectives

  • Executive coaching programmes drawing on highly-experienced, qualified business coaches

  • Facilitated learning groups that use Action Learning and Peer Mentoring

  • Development retreats to enable leaders to gain the thinking space for re-orientation or transition



Dove Self-Esteem Project - transforming a bar of soap into a thought leader in body confidence


The challenge (when we started in 2004)

• Drive above average growth

• Become an iconic masterbrand 

• Develop a relevant Purposeful Positioning


The process

• Leadership enrolment through a personal transformation programme

• Pioneered Dove Self-Esteem Project

• Set up and led external Advisory Board

• Approached & facilitated external partnerships

• Created world-class educational self-esteem resources with proven effectiveness

• Lead global employee volunteering days

The outcome

• Over 100 million young people have used

Dove Self-Esteem Project educational resources in a meaningful way and with a measurable impact

• Consumer and stakeholder behaviours show that this Purpose has led to clear issue ownership, competitive positioning, brand value and increased sales

• Unprecedented publicity and amplification

• Government bodies and NGOs keen to partner

Dove Self-Esteem Project educational materials
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Case study


One way that some organisations choose to implement their Purpose is using it to inspire the next generation, and those who teach them.  Indeed, as the work-load and expectations on Teachers and Youth Leaders goes ever upwards, they increasingly value appropriate resources that support bringing curriculum-based topics to life.  


Here you can see some of the elements of an integrated educational resource that we created on behalf of Lifebuoy, the world's leading hygiene soap, at the height of the Covid crisis.  It includes character development, lesson plans, stimulus presentations, videos, activity sheets, posters, comics, stickers, calendars, parental leaflets and a pre-school alphabet book.


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A Million Microbes cover.png
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Unilever brand purpose
Medical Research Council leadership development
UK Sport leadership development
NHS leadership development
Sustainable Brands facilitation consultancy
Signal brand purpose employee activation facilitation
Southbank Centre facilitation
Apps For Good in school workshops
Nomad Foods school education material developement
British Triathlon executive coaching
Cala executive coaching
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Contact us


executive coach leadership development programme
Sue Holland

Sue has been a leadership coach and facilitator of change in organisations for over 20 years. She was a VP at Unilever and has gone on to operate interdependently across many industry sectors: venture capital, TV, retail, manufacturing, IT and a number of government organisations.


Sue holds a PhD from Edinburgh University and a Diploma in Executive Coaching from the Academy of Executive Coaching. She has trained with the Tavistock Institute, Synectics and the Gestalt Institute in process consultancy and facilitation. She continues to build both her coaching and facilitation capability and credentials through a self-directed programme of continued professional development, including retreat experience every autumn and regular supervision.


Sue is qualified to administer MBTI (step 1 and 2), Harthill Leadership Framework and the Hay Inventory of Leadership Styles (EQ). She also has experience in the Hogan Leadership Model, Pearson-Marr Archetype Indicator and FIRO-B.

brand purpose facilitation consultant
Martin Staniforth

Martin works with organisations on their Purposeful Positioning.  He has facilitated the global Dove Self-Esteem Project since 2004, helping to turn this from a concept into a global tangible programme equipped with accessible body confidence educational resources.  In the Covid lockdown year of 2020, he supported the (re)launch of Lifebuoy into the UK with the development of an integrated education programme.  Martin has consulted with many brands on the process to find a relevant, motivating and actionable Purpose.  As part of this, he has facilitated partnerships with NGOs, set up external Advisory Boards, developed education materials with global experts, led employee volunteering days and advised on communication programmes. 

In earlier life, Martin trained as an engineer then moved over to brand communications at Saatchi & Saatchi.  He is accredited to use the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator tool and has been a speaker at several sustainability, educational and mental health conferences.

Away from work, he is curious about mankind’s impact on the world and is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.    


We have a lean structure so that we can respond to the specific needs of each stage of your project.  We select from a broad network of specialists who have the specific skills with which we need to partner.  Some of these skill-sets have included executive coaches, facilitators, marketing specialists, videographers and top-selling children's authors.

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