We are a group of professionals from different fields who come together because we share common beliefs about leadership, organisations and human potential. We work together as a community of practice to develop and share the ideas and techniques that we have found work best. Our common aim is to bring out the full potential of people working together in the contexts and cultures we work in.

Because of our backgrounds, we are particularly interested and involved in the fields of education and not-for-profit organisations and have a developing interest in working with people in the commercial sector who find our ideas and values relevant.

Our Mission

Our mission is to help people make relationships and communicate in ways that improve human cooperation and enhance creativity.

Our Philosophy
Our philosophy is that being skillful in making and maintaining relationship is a fundamental need of all human beings but especially in those who chose to lead or to guide others.

These skills and communication skills that enhance our ability to help each other can and should be learned by everyone because cooperations is a fundamental part of the human condition.

Our Values
Our values are to favour honesty over politeness, mutual respect over command and control, care and emotional awareness over toughness and avoidance of vulnerability.

Meet the team

Nick Zienau
Nick ZienauFounder
Nick Zienau has worked as a consultant facilitating organisational change, training leaders and coaching executives in communication and relationships for the past 25 years – working in the UK and many countries in Europe.

Originally trained as an economist he worked for 12 years with large numbers of disaffected teenagers in Central London – for 8 years he was Director of a special unit for these young people – helping them to get a better start in adult life.

His passion is for work with socially engaged leaders and organisations. That often takes him back into education, in work with NGOs and other not-for-profit organisations, and with enterprises who take their social impact seriously.


Helen Jamieson
Helen JamiesonConsultant
Helen trained in design and has spent the last seven years leading innovation projects for clients such as Johnson & Johnson, Vodafone and Converse. She specialises in user centred research and facilitation of co-design workshops – helping her clients to design new products, services and marketing campaigns that are inspired by the needs of their customers.

Helen works with Intelligent Action to bring her skills and expertise in research, co-design and innovation to education – working with Schools to raise achievement through a deep understanding of the pupils’ experience.

Helen trained with Intelligent Action in Leading & Influencing to develop her consultancy skills. She now supports the facilitation of these workshops with others.

Guy Holder
Guy HolderConsultant
Guy Holder has worked in education since 2004 with five years as Head of Department of Business and Economics. He has a variety of experiences of leading partnership projects with outside organisations such as the British Council and PwC and leading on initiatives such as Duke of Edinburgh and Enterprise Education.

Recently returned from a year teaching in China, Guy is striving to take forward his belief in the model of Consulting and Leading courses that he experienced as a participant at Levels 1 and 2 and as a facilitator. He is keen to be involved in advancing this programme with adults and young people.

Guy’s passion is to work in environments that are striving to get the best from their employees and to create workplaces that empower and realize human potential.

Oliver Broadbent
Oliver BroadbentConsultant
Oliver is a leading training programme designer in the field of civil engineering and construction, specialising in designing programmes of learning to support leaders, organisations and groups to build their problem-solving and creative skills.

He is an expert workshop facilitator with experience of working with groups of all sizes, from small action learning sets through to rooms of over 100 people. Oliver maintains a close network of co-trainers and designers that enable him to commission a wide range of learning tools, including video, apps, learner management systems and hands-on activities using real construction materials.

For nine years Oliver was Director of engineering education consultancy Think Up, where he led the development of over 100 innovations in engineering education, including industry-wide training programmes, multimedia teaching resources and good-practice guidance. In 2019 he founded training practice Constructivist with a mission to train the next generation of engineers to identify problems that need solving, find creative solutions to those problems and to seek out the skills they need to deliver those solutions.

Barbara Takacs
Barbara TakacsConsultant
Barbara Takacs (‘69) is an independent professional since 2004. She started her own business after having worked for a number of professional training companies. As an applied social psychologist, she likes to translate theory into practice; helping organisations moving from ideas to reality. Her approach is client centred by nature; her role varies depending on what is needed on stage: coach, facilitator, advisor or trainer.

Barbara specialises in working with professionals who excel in their field, but need help when they enter into new roles. She offers focus, practical tools and fresh energy to those conversations that leaders tend to avoid. Barbara is a change facilitator who believes we can only co-create new realities by shifting from debate to dialogue.

Takacs partners with Ben Verheijden on Academic Leadership for the universities of Leiden, Groningen, Amsterdam, Utrecht (among others). They design and facilitate tailor-made leadership programmes for researchers and professional staff who (will) have to lead others. Besides that Takacs&Verheijden provide (team) coaching for their programme alumni and facilitate strategic meetings at top level of faculties and institutes. Barbara facilitates workshops on leadership skills for the European Centre of Innovative Universities (ECIU).
Besides her work in academia Barbara is part of different networks of colleagues (Theworldweworkin, Mannaz). She is in the lead as behavioural faculty for professional development programmes for ING and the Royal Schiphol Group.


Who we work with

We work with many kinds of organisations that are led by people who see the quality of human interaction as crucial to their success.

We have worked over a number of years with some great schools in both primary and secondary phases in the UK. We work with Medecin Sans Frontiere and other NGOs which operate internationally across many cultures, we work with innovative and forward-looking companies in both the public and private sector in the UK and elsewhere in Europe.