Who Chooses Us?

Since 2009, leading edge, ‘good for New Zealand’ organisations have been choosing Blacksmith as their leadership development partner.

Purpose is written deep into their DNA and they align with our philosophy of human-centred leadership. They see leadership and its development not just as part of shaping a better organisation, but also essential to growing stronger individuals, families and communities. They see the opportunity to impact not just their organisation’s performance through the development of their leaders but also their leaders’ lives and the lives of the people who matter most around them, at work and at home.

The Four Domains

[Fig.1: The Four Domains of Human-centred Leadership, Kate Billing, Founder & Creative Director, Blacksmith]

The organisations we work with are all looking for a development experience with a difference. One that is human, real, deeper than they’ve experienced before. An experience that develops the humans their leaders are being while they’re doing what they need to do; developing the authenticity, connection, identity, and presence their leaders bring into each and every moment of their lives and leadership.

Our clients each have an Executive Leadership Team at their centre that is ready to be visible, vulnerable, and on the learning pathway with their Senior Leadership Community – not setting themselves apart but sharing their experience, their wisdom, and their own growth journeys as they walk the path together.

They understand it’s not just about a beautifully designed and artfully facilitated development programme. It’s also about the cultivation of their day-to-day organisational learning culture and in-the-moment modelling of desired leadership behaviours and attributes, acknowledging meaningful progress throughout the process of development.

The Core Dimensions

[Fig.2: Programme Design Thinking for Deliberately Developmental Organisations, Kate Billing, Founder & Creative Director, Blacksmith]

Finally, it’s not just about our clients choosing us. We choose them.

We commit to the committed. We partner with organisations who are looking for a different approach to leadership development. Organisations who see the value in putting being human at the centre of leadership and its development. Organisations who are serious about making a difference for their people, as well as their business.

We take care to get to know potential new clients through our engagement pathway, answering questions like:

  • Do they align with our values and philosophy?
  • Do they want to develop their leaders as whole people, from the inside out?
  • What are their compelling contextual drivers for transformation?
  • Are they up for our approach?
  • Do they recognise the time, energy, and effort that genuine transformation requires?
  • Do we like them as people? Because we’re going to be spending a lot of time together!

And finally, together with them, do we have the makings of a ‘Dream Team’ that will deliver what we’re all after: Better humans. Better leaders. Better organisations. Better world.

Client Comments

Kate is a highly capable, well researched and commercially astute facilitator. Authentic conscious leadership is something she lives and breathes. Kate and the Blacksmith team have delivered a highly impactful leadership development programme for TVNZ and we are reaping the benefits of a more connected and aligned leadership team.

Anna Lissaman, Director of People & Talent - TVNZ

Icebreaker has a Global Leadership Team and communication styles and cultural backgrounds vary. Kate is able to seamlessly relate to everyone in our GLT. Her collaborative style, attention to every detail, humility and humor sets her apart from other leadership specialists and programs I’ve seen. If you’re looking to take your team to the next level, Kate and the Blacksmith Team are worth the investment.

Greg Smith, CEO - Icebreaker

Nothing more to say except the programme has been what I have needed for over 10 years and it has rocked my leadership world creating clarity and focus, confidence, a peacefulness and consciously doing what is important to me to do the best for others.

Edith Sykes, General Manager People & Capability - Ballance Agri-Nutients

Kate is an exceptionally gifted facilitator at the forefront of contemporary leadership practice. She is a true expert, and her real magic is being able to explain complex concepts in simple, real, human terms. Our programme was universally regarded as the most profound collective development participants had experienced - and proof that there is huge value in shared leadership development in organisations.

Jaron Shaw, Head of Operations Services - ACC

Kate and her team excel at delivering what they promised us. Forging leadership capability. After many years and many providers I think Kate is outstanding at delivering insights and frameworks that get to the deeply human interactions. It’s bloody refreshing is probably the best way to put it. Solid, proven and science backed delivered with a sense of humour and accountability.

Steve Jurkovich, CEO - Kiwibank

Trusted By

We’re privileged to work with some amazing leaders, influencers and change makers in all kinds of organisations.  Below are some of the clients we have partnered with to support them to forge better leaders.

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