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Thom Dennis

CEO, Serenity in Leadership | International Speaker | Author

CEO, Serenity in Leadership | International Speaker | Author

Thom Dennis is the CEO of Serenity in Leadership Ltd, the premier culture transformation, change and leadership specialists.

He is an international speaker, voiceover actor and Amazon #1 published author. Thom has been featured on both BBC TV News and radio, and as a thought leader in over 320 articles in industry-leading publications in just the last two years alone.

With over 30 years’ experience as an executive coach, facilitator, change maker and leadership developer, and having served 17 years as an officer in the Royal Marines, Thom has been hired by global banking, pharmaceutical, energy and engineering brands such as Citigroup, Royal Bank of Scotland, Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Conoco Phillips, Shell, BP, Centrica and Transocean to name just a few.

  • The Pros and Cons of AI and How We Must Stay Human

    AI is going to impact your life significantly and soon. ChatGPT is just one recent manifestation which has ignited a user take-up rate [which is faster than any other technology in history]. The World Economic Forum says a quarter of jobs will be impacted over just the next five years as a result of technology and digitalisation.  BT has unveiled its strategy to decrease its workforce by up to 55,000 employees by the year 2030, with roughly 10,000 positions being substituted by artificial intelligence. UK energy giant Octopus Energy reported that customer experience satisfaction is greater in those who interacted with an AI-driven assistant (80% customer satisfaction) than human staff (65%).

    So where does this leave leaders and their teams?

    Learning Outcomes

    • Insights into the breadth and depth of the wave of AI initiatives that are here and coming.
    • An understanding of the likely impacts of AI
    • Ideas of what to avoid and how to engage with AI
    • Encouragement and actions to take as AI invades all our work arenas
    • Tips for retaining your essence of humanity in the face of the changes brought about by the introduction of AI

     

    This session is available on demand, in our Learning Library

  • How To Handle a Difficult Executive

    What are the reasons that make a person difficult? There are many and none of them has to do with you!

    You haven’t caused this difficult behaviour but you may be on the receiving end of this person’s discomfort or pain which, if they don’t have sufficient self-awareness, will spread out around them – a projection of dis-ease which may affect you.

    When people are being nasty and awkward it is very easy to be drawn into responding in, or at least feeling, the same way rather than approaching the person with interest, curiosity and empathy. This may seem counter-intuitive but most dysfunctional behaviour is rooted in fear and pain.

    How you respond is very much dependent on what role you are in; as an Assistant, you are generally trying to be as helpful as possible and not to ‘rock the boat’, so this calls for a mindset that will accept difficult behaviour without taking it personally. But there are limits and resilience, patience, a sense of humour and also a high level of professionalism all come together to empower you in the face of someone and their behaviour which you cannot control.

    Learning Outcomes

    • Greater understanding of the roots of dysfunctional behaviour
    • Insights into boundary setting
    • A higher level of self-awareness so that it’s easier not to take unpleasant actions personally
    • Understanding of the concept of match & lead
    • Strategies to protect mental health
    • Greater understanding of the dynamics of power

     

    This session is available on demand from our Learning Library

  • Is CQ (Cultural Intelligence) the New EQ/ IQ?

    Cultural quotient or cultural intelligence (CQ) is increasingly being seen as of far more value than IQ (intelligence quotient), and of equal importance in business to its counterpart emotional intelligence (EQ), because of its proven exponential positive impact on improved teamwork, performance, cooperation and communication. CQ is a globally recognised measure of how good we are at understanding cultural differences including, but not limited to, nationality, ethnicity, culture, location, gender and age.

    Thom reveals why CQ assesses far beyond simple cultural sensitivity and awareness and how it helps us understand the decisions people and organisations make and how they are influenced by their beliefs, attitudes, and values.4How to crack the code to create a healthy business culture Legendary management consultant Peter Drucker once said: “Culture eats strategy for breakfast”. Is this still true, and how can we change the culture so that it supports our path into the future? A poor diversity and inclusion culture leads to increased levels of harassment, bullying, a lack of belonging, burnout, passive aggression, a loss of talent and high levels of absenteeism to name a few dysfunctional aspects. But there is a way to break toxic cycles and build a safe and welcoming environment, and Thom believes he has the keys to crack the code and unlock a sustainable healthy culture.

  • How to Crack the Code to Create a Healthy Business Culture

    Legendary management consultant Peter Drucker once said: “Culture eats strategy for breakfast”. Is this still true, and how can we change the culture so that it supports our path into the future? A poor diversity and inclusion culture leads to increased levels of harassment, bullying, a lack of belonging, burnout, passive aggression, a loss of talent and high levels of absenteeism to name a few dysfunctional aspects. But there is a way to break toxic cycles and build a safe and welcoming environment, and Thom believes he has the keys to crack the code and unlock a sustainable healthy culture.

  • If Bullying and Harassment Are Systemic, What’s The Solution?

    Bullying takes place in almost every workplace but calculating the extent of bullying in an organization is still very challenging – it’s not even defined in law! It’s toxic for our employees, and our organisations suffer in so many ways which affect the bottom line. Bullying costs both the individual and the organisation dearly. Thom brings his own honest and revealing experience of being bullied to this talk, emphasises that if you are turning a blind eye to bullying you are part of it and reveals solutions to make our workplaces and cultures safer, and ultimately more productive.

  • Why the Business Leader Needs to Be a Healer First

    Leadership bestows power; what’s important is how that power is used – giving and enabling vs ego, fear and control. In the recent past, we have seen shining examples of global influencers and inspiring business leaders. We have also seen incredibly poor leadership which has been synonymous with dishonesty, ego and conflict. Such a style leads inevitably to a negative impact on a company’s culture, creativity and productivity and creates stress and poor wellbeing in others.

    Good and effective leadership comes from being a role model, being present, guiding individuals with humility and helping them to enable their personal achievements, as well as success for a greater common purpose. Thom brings all his experience as a facilitator, speaker, consultant, educator and change agent to show how to develop the skills of leadership needed for today and tomorrow in individuals and teams.

  • Leadership Training

    Our management and leadership training programmes are designed to train people to lead in uncertainty and adopt responsible leadership qualities.

    The need for organisations to have exceptional leadership has never been more crucial. Leaders today must navigate in a volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous (VUCA) world where the expectations of a leader have vastly changed.

    To help leaders perform at their best, our consultants provide leadership skills, management development and coaching development training.

    Our Approach

    Bespoke solutions

    Our leadership training plans include 360 feedback and assessments. We will choose one of our programmes for you that we can then customise for your business.

    Measurable business outcomes

    We will work with you to create clear outcomes and measurable objectives. The skills we teach will equip your leaders with the self-awareness and ability to navigate change and drive a high-performance culture.

    Sustainable change

    We look at all the elements that influence our ability to perform at our best, by tapping into individual values, beliefs, and purpose. Rather than focusing on tools alone, we focus on how a leader can increase their confidence and resilience before applying the skills required to enhance their leadership ability.

    From crisis management and creating an authentic leadership style, to strategic planning and vision setting, we help leaders develop their skills.

     

    Benefits of our leadership training

    With our leadership training programmes, leaders will:

    • Learn and build confidence that sticks and is repeatable.
    • Have greater resilience and response skills to change the way they assess and perceive a threat.
    • Be provided with the best tools to handle corporate transitions.
    • Acquire improved self-awareness.
    • Understand how to engage and inspire teams.
    • Have the insights and expertise to delegate and promote successfully.
    • Use better management practices.
  • Executive Leadership Coaching

    We work through leadership issues on a one-to-one basis to help senior executives put their best ideas forward, collaborate successfully and look after their teams. We adapt our leadership coaching to suit your individual needs. Our one-to-one coaching sessions are tailored to suit your unique needs and circumstances, providing you with the tools and strategies you need to achieve your goals.

    We understand the demands and complexities of executive leadership, and we’re here to help you navigate them successfully. Whether you’re struggling with communication breakdowns, collaboration issues, or team management difficulties, we can help you put your best ideas forward and achieve your desired outcomes.

    What does executive leadership coaching include?

    Personal development, training and learning opportunities become less available once you reach the C-Suite. But to perform and excel at your best, you require meaningful feedback.

    According to ICF Global Coaching Client Study, 99 per cent of individuals who hire a coach are ‘satisfied or very satisfied’.

    Our executive leadership coaching includes a detailed diagnosis and development plan, routine reviews and ongoing support. Clients often require assistance with: Mergers and acquisitions, performance and productivity improvement, cultural, attitudinal, and behavioural change, and improving and developing leadership.

    How our executive leadership coaching works:

    Diagnosis

    We’ll work together to find the right Serenity in Leadership coach for you and your organisation. A meeting will be held for you and your coach to become acquainted.

    Development

    Our style and approach are adapted to suit your personality, time frame and goals. You and your executive leadership coach will both agree to clear outcomes and measurable objectives.

    Reviews and ongoing support

    Throughout your coaching journey, we regularly review outcomes and strategies to ensure you reach your potential.

    Customisable plans

    We design and develop customised plans for individuals, teams, and organisations. We offer phone, video, and in-person coaching sessions.

    Benefits of executive leadership coaching

    • Effective VUCA leadership training to handle volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity.
    • More cohesive, productive, engaged teams.
    • The best learning tools to handle corporate transition.
    • Faster, more effective results through better decision-making.
    • Potential risks are identified and planned for.
    • Full potential released.
    • Improved communication.
    • Individuals are better equipped to navigate changing expectations of leadership traits and skills.
  • Denyce Treybig Executive Project Management Office—Business Change Lead, BP

    My first meeting with Thom was during the aftermath of the 2010 BP Oil Spill. As you can imagine, it was a difficult time for us here at BP. Thom sets himself apart from other consultants by his exceptional and compassionate listening style, his uncanny ability to understand people at their core, and a determination to find the root causes to drive positive change. All of these characteristics and skills make him a trusted and experienced advisor.

  • Cathy Carney Vice President—Human Resources, Astrazeneca

    I want to say thank you for a fantastic job with the Regulatory Affairs Leadership Team. Let’s put it this way—I was impressed with your work with the Iressa team but the AZRA LT is a very different ball game. What impressed me was you never backed away from the direct and more importantly indirect/unspoken challenges thrown at you. You demonstrated so openly how to take that behaviour on without being insulting. That’s when I knew I was watching and learning from a master … you’re really good Thom. You’re a pleasure to work with—thank you.

  • Professor Luigi G Martini FRPharmS, MBA (Visiting) Professor in Pharmaceutical Innovation, Roche Pharmaceuticals Ltd

    Thom came at a time in my career where I needed the counsel and wisdom of a man who had been there and got the T-shirt! Thom has a great listening style and the ability to help you deconstruct the issues you may be facing, and guides you to possible solution pathways. I know my line manager saw an immediate change in my interactions with my peers and leaders, and using his words—I became more comfortable in my skin.

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