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CEOs & Superintendents use our expertise to forge cultures that foster growth.
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CEOs & Superintendents use our expertise to forge cultures that foster growth.

We help leaders create high-performing cultures.
Utilizing research on organizational change & brain science, techniques for personal growth, and decades of experience, we go well beyond standard team-building exercises and coaching sessions.
We’ll help you and your team make real changes, create elegant strategic plans, take initiative and grow both personally and professionally. Best of all, you’ll be able to build what you learn into your culture so your organization continues to thrive.​
Our high-impact learning model guarantees rapid improvements in customer service, quality, productivity, and bottom-line profitability.

Building a high-performing culture goes beyond standard team-building exercises and individual coaching sessions  

With our approach, your teams learn to empower each other through effective leadership, management and coaching.

We promise results, and we insist that you hold us accountable.

  • Two-thirds of US workers feel disengaged; and of those, 74 percent are either actively looking for new work or are open to new opportunities. {Gallup}

  • Productivity and profitability fall. According to the American Psychological Association, the stress associated with not being fully engaged at work costs the US economy 550 million days off a year, at a cost of $500 billion.

  • And ultimately, the best people leave for reasons not fully understood.

Cultural Transformation

Our Transformational Leadership Projects are comprehensive in nature and incorporate team building, management & coach training, leadership development, and strategic plan realization. 

Our process generates significant change in 60-days and includes group workshops, team coaching sessions, weekly videos, and one-on-one coaching. 

We support the creation of a culture of innovation fueled by personal growth: where personal engagement is fostered, and inclusion amplifies teamwork.  All this has a direct measurable impact on quality, customer satisfaction, financial performance and employee retention.

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As a naturally skeptical person and engineer who needs lots of data and information, I was a little uneasy if we would really get the amount of value that I wanted from Tom & Brad (Phoenix Performance Partners).
However, this work has completely exceeded my expectations, and frankly, we now have a significantly better team as a result. 
I am confident that we are going to be a national engineering firm by 2025, and now we have the tools needed to make that goal a reality.

Rashod R. Johnson 
President & CEO, Ardmore-Roderick ~ Chicago

If we are to change culture, we must first understand what it is.  We define culture as the unspoken rules of engagement within any group of people.   

These unspoken rules govern everything; what can and cannot be discussed, what language is allowable, how people dress, the assumptions decisions are based on — everything.

Culture just happens. 

When you walk into work, do you say to yourself, “I’m going to follow these rules today,” or “I have to remember how to act today in order to fit in?”  


Of course not. Humans are social animals; once we are acclimated to a culture, we will adopt its practices (unconsciously) because we want to fit in.

Culture is unconscious.  Most efforts to change culture overlook this basic characteristic of culture, which is why such efforts frequently fail.  How can you change something you are not conscious of? 

Our work with teams always begins by helping them become conscious of cultural attributes of their organization as a whole. These attributes are the root cause of an organization's propensity to:

  • 1. Innovate

Root Cause Attributes:  Creativity, Psychological Safety, Authority, Accountability, Results Focus, Strategy, & Coaching.

  • 2. Perform as a United Team. 

Root Cause Attributes:  Openness, Trust, Role Clarity, Cooperation, Meetings, & Management.

  • 3. Evoke Engagement from Associates. 

Root Cause Attributes:  Personal Purpose, Personal Responsibility, Personal Growth & Inclusion.


Culture is a Product of Leadership.

Cultures arise from the behaviors demonstrated by the organization’s leaders. Most cultures do not mirror just the CEO’s behavior, but the collective behavior of the top executives.


You might ask: Why doesn’t the leader just change the priorities?  Not so simple!  Those priorities arise from her or his unconscious behavioral needs.

Behavioral profiles such as Disc, Myers-Briggs, or our own Insight Coaching System offer insight for people into what their unconscious priorities are and how they shape behavior and therefore culture. And the entire leadership team must be made aware of how their collective unconscious behaviors are impacting the organization if they are to have a shot at improving their organization’s culture.
Any culture change effort must begin by helping leaders become conscious of these unconscious needs. Making them conscious allows people to choose when to employ them and when not to.

Any such culture change process that ignores these “comfort zone” behaviors is doomed to failure.

Once leaders are aware of their unconscious habits and which ones support the type of culture they’re trying to build and which do not, they can begin to develop conscious habits that intentionally support a high-performing culture. 

We utilize Conscious Leader Survey to help leaders understand how those in their organization see them engaging in the behaviors that promote the cultural attributes listed above;
  • Creativity
  • Psychological Safety 
  • Authority, Accountability
  • Results FocusStrategy
  • Coaching Openness
  • Trust

  • Role Clarity

  • Cooperation

  • Meetings & Management Personal Purpose

  • Personal Responsibility & Personal Growth.

In this way, leaders can see how their personal behaviors directly lead to the organizational culture and provides input as to what personal developmental targets they commit to…in order to effect change in their culture.

Why Phoenix?

Our book comes out on January 23, 2024


In their book THE GREAT ENGAGEMENT, Tom Willis & Brad Zimmerman guide CEOs and leaders through the pragmatic process they have been using for over 30 years to transform organizations from good to great to exceptional.

Brad & Tom help CEOs create cultures where teams can tap into what the Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw said: “This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being a force of nature.”

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For 30 years, Phoenix Performance Partners has been helping CEOs create high-performing cultures.  We are known for:


helping clients get to the root cause of difficult-to-discuss, high-stakes issues in a manner that is direct, supportive and valuable.  ​


facilitating the development of open, collaborative, coaching cultures that inspire creativity, engagement, innovation, and improved results.


This is the best investment I have made in my time as Superintendent. Phoenix is as committed to our kids as we are. And their approach is different from anything I’ve seen in my 30 years as a professional.

Dennis McDavid ~ Superintendent of Schools, Berkley School District ~ Detroit


Need more information?

For additional information or to register contact one of our Co-Founders:


Tom Willis

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Brad Zimmerman

100% of CEOs expressed positive change.

Research conducted by the University of Southern California
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