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What Clients are Saying

“We have had the pleasure of partnering with Lori Silverman in our strategic planning process over the past year. The experience has been enriching, and we strongly recommend her to organizations considering engaging in a strategic planning initiative.

Lori facilitated a refreshing approach to strategic planning that we had not seen before it was comprehensive, collaborative, and efficient all at once, in the following ways:

  • It was comprehensive in that we spent considerable time conducting an environmental scan that reached far beyond our traditional areas of focus. Without Lori’s participation, we likely would have limited our focus on issues within the region that we serve. With Lori’s participation, we expanded out thinking beyond the region, considering national and international trends that might impact the people we serve.

  • It was collaborative in that we involved over 60 people in the process. A vast majority of those individuals were volunteer board or community members, and the strategic planning process effectively facilitated the partnership of those volunteers with Y staff members to conduct the research and develop the strategic plan.

  • It was efficient in that we were able to leverage Lori’s experience with other organizations to kick-start the strategic planning process at the Y. Her facilitation skills and business acumen were exceptional. As a result, we were able to optimize our time with the volunteers and staff members, and everyone ethusiastically agreed that their time was well spent.

The result of our efforts with Lori is a strategic plan that we are now in the process of executing. We are excited about the breakthrough strategies that we identified through our work with Lori. We greatly appreciate the time Lori spent with our organization and would use her services again without hesitation. We would be glad to speak with anyone considering an engagement with her.”

Rig Riggins
President and CEO
YMCA of the Inland Northwest
Jason Thackston
YMCA Board Member
Chair, Strategic Planning Committee

“Because we are in a declining market, we thought it was time to re-look at our business strategies. Lori presented us with a workable method to move the process forward. As always with this type of process, a lot of employees were skeptical that we would get any concrete results and there was a lot of underlying resistance. As the process unfolded during the retreat, many commented that there was a lot of good conversation that was inspired from Loriís facilitation. We continued to work during the retreat to come up with our breakthrough strategies and look at our mission and vision statements. Everyone worked together very well with Loriís guidance and Lori helped keep us on track. The retreat was labeled a success by all who participated and it reassured us that we are on the correct path for the next 3 to 5 years. The process gave us some clear paths forward and specific steps to follow to make that happen. We are currently working on those steps and we hear employees referring to our strategies when discussing business opportunities and whether the opportunity truly fits the strategies defined. Thank you Lori for your help in redefining our goals and helping us to move forward”

Lynn Townsend-White
Western Polymer Corp.

“As a start-up association we had a lot ahead of us, from day-to-day operational start-up activities to thinking about what and who we wanted to be ‘when we grew up.’ Lori Silverman’s guidance and strategic planning retreat was exactly what we needed to focus on the future. Putting ourselves into the future to understand what we can do today was a very hard thing for some of our Board members to do. Your methodology, support and encouragement were undoubtedly what helped us get past looking at just today. I am happy to say that our association has completed three of its four, first-year objectives, and is on track to complete all four. Our three breakthrough strategies are part of every Board member’s focus and vernacular when addressing our membership. We are very confident with where we are heading in the next five years.”

Lisa (Flint ) Dodson
International Association for Information and Data Quality

“We are hard at work implementing our new 2010 Strategic Plan. The three breakthrough strategies AND the Board’s deep involvement is just what we needed to launch our second 100 years. Frankly, I did not think we would get this far. Thank you for your unwavering commitment to us and your process. I had over 75% of our Board take the time to specifically comment on the St. Charles event. Most of these executives have been through many hours of strategic planning within their own organizations, often led by the national consulting firms. They were impressed we got so much done! Not only did the process generate the breakthroughs for the future, but we got so much detail behind each of them. Our plan is concrete, actionable, yet very creative and ‘outside the box.’ As an idea generator myself and not a process person, I appreciated the way you kept reminding me to trust the process. The results prove that the process works. In our wrap up conversation, you suggested some ingenious ways to communicate our vision forward to 2010. Your experience with so many other firms and individuals makes you a very effective resource. Please accept our thanks for a excellent experience.”

Ric Hinkie
Midwest Energy Association

“Tinker Federal Credit Union initially contacted Partners for Progress to ask for help in crafting ideas to assist our employees work through a major core system conversion. We were concerned with the human side of the change, as well as the technical. Lori Silverman provided consulting expertise and ideas on how to structure the change initiative, as well as acting as a key note speaker at our all-employee training day that kicked off the conversion. We feel that her involvement was instrumental in making the first stage of the acceptance of change by our employees both informative and personal. For the duration of the project, we are going to base our communications to and training for our employees on the groundwork she laid.”

Gary Bartley
Executive Vice President
Tinker Federal Credit Union

“Lori Silverman can work magic!! My organization recently sat through a strategic planning session and the group that came out of the session was definitely a different group than the one that went in the day before. Lori’s insight and unique ability to help us shift perspective has been a catalyst for change in the right direction. Thank you Partners for Progress.”

BJ Pfeiffer
The Business Forum

“Partners for Progress has been a real partner in the development of our organization. They have given us important feedback and been an objective voice in many of our most important strategic decisions. In addition, they have always done the front- and back-end work needed to maximize the benefit of their services.”

David Mungenast
Chief Executive Officer
The Gogolak Communications Group, Inc.

“As a recently hired Executive Director at the National Credit Union Foundation, I believed that it was absolutely imperative that we embark on a new strategic plan. Ms. Silverman was hired to facilitate this process using participatory facilitative methods. The result was outstanding. Ms. Silverman created a safe environment for the board and staff to express themselves; she developed and maintained a carefully crafted agenda that sought consensus around major strategic decisions; and, she encouraged us all to base our goals for the Foundation, not on the present, but on the future. The Foundation’s board chairman remarked to me that ‘Ms. Silverman provided one of the most satisfying strategic planning experience that he has yet encountered.’ I would certainly echo that sentiment!”

Gary Officer
Executive Director
National Credit Union Foundation

“As outgoing president of the Media Communications Association-International, I realized that our organization needed a solid strategy for the next couple of years. Partners for Progress helped my Board and me realize that in order to succeed, we needed a long-term strategy. Lori was instrumental in communicating the concept to our board, coaching us through the tasks we needed to do and facilitating the planning process. As a volunteer organization, we would never have never taken the time to do this extensive of a long-term plan. We appreciate the expertise that Partners for Progress brought to MCA-I!”

Steve Tingley
2002 President
Media Communications Association-International

“Lori has a first-rate understanding of key strategic planning tools. With her skills and guidance, our group created thoughtful and meaningful goals that will help our organization thrive. Lori is masterful at bringing discussion to consensus and closure, leaving everyone with a sense of accomplishment.”

Mary A. Schumacher
Executive Director
American College of Veterinary Pathologists

“Lori was brought on to provide a lead role in the development and integration of our project management courses, and provide a certificate program that is highly interactive through a common framework, real-life project situations, and easy-to-use templates. During my time working with Lori, she demonstrated very effective project management skills and the ability to get projects done on time and within budget. The impact from this newly structured program has given us a quality and comprehensive program that provides individuals the essential skills to successfully manage projects.”

Nancy Mathews
Director, Business and Engineering
School of Continuing Education, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

“Lori Silverman combines depth of education, experience, strategic perspective, a field tested methodology, and finely honed critical insights to assist a complex organization in discovering opportunities for business process improvements that improve efficiency and effectiveness. Her unique skill set has been a valuable asset in our strategic thinking and quality improvement efforts. Lori has [also] provided valuable strategic guidance and coaching to the corporate Board and senior management in planning and executing business plans and budgets.”

Martin A. Preizler
President and CEO
Physicians Plus Insurance Corporation

“The Wisconsin Department of Transportation's 2001 Strategic Planning Event was an opportunity for over 260 employees to participate in building a collective understanding of the challenges and possibilities that lie ahead for our organization. We not only developed a vision of the future, but also the action plans that will make that future a reality. Lori's expertise and consultation were an important factor in helping us build the agenda for this event. With Lori's help and guidance, we were able to plan for and conduct a very successful and very important 3-day planning session.”

Sharon Mylrea
Training Director
Wisconsin Department of Transportation

“I’ve worked with Lori Silverman in both large (more than 100) and small (less than 10) group facilitation. She’s an excellent facilitator in either environment. Her ability to empower a group of people to take action and own the decision making process is outstanding. She’s extremely motivating and encourages involvement from each participant. Her pre-planning work is thorough and organized. Lori is a true professional who not only knows her craft, but also is a pleasure to work with.

Karen Birk
Creative Communication Concepts Inc.

“I’ve used Lori to facilitate strategic planning for my business and also for an association client. The client produced one of the best plans I’ve seen. Truly strategic in nature, this plan will strengthen and expand the association’s role beyond their profession. And my plan? In eighteen months I’ve already met my three year goal. That’s an effective planning process.”

Susan M. Rees
President & CEO
The Rees Group, Inc.

“Lori Silverman was a singular, dynamic influence on me and the 750 person organization that I commanded, teaching, leading and inspiring us to go beyond the status quo and shift the traditional mind set of how a military organization must be managed and led.

A master at quickly learning our business, she was able to insightfully provide advice to our Leadership Team for the development of both short and long range planning tools that had previously been non-existent.

Her rapport with our workforce was truly phenomenal. As a result, we were able to build a training program that gave our heretofore neglected blue collar workers a feeling of self worth and for the first time a feeling of having a stake in the organizations future.

During the period of Lori's assistance to us we were going through a downsizing of over 30% of our organization with a workload and responsibility increase of the same magnitude. Fortunately for us Lori Silverman was advising us through this tumultuous time. Not only did we absorb the loss of over 30 percent of our people through increased efficiency and work process streamlining, we were nationally recognized by the Air Force and Vice President Gore for our improvement efforts. This simply would not have occurred had Lori Silverman not provided us her tremendous insight, knowledge, wisdom and patience”

James H. White
Colonel, USAF Commander, Ret.
HQ Air Reserve Personnel Center

“Most of us have heard the view that attempting to guide university professors and administrators is similar to taking about 20 cats for a walk without any leashes. After teaching-and-preaching Strategic Planning in our fully accredited Business School for several decades, we decided to develop our own Strategic Plan—and fortunately recruited Lori Silverman to be our coordinator, consultant and facilitator. Lori was exceptionally effective with about 20 of our key people—and the resulting plan is proving to be invaluable to our remarkable growth and success.”

Thomas J. Murrin
Dean, A.J. Palumbo School of Business
Duquesne University

“Lori Silverman has a proven ability to deal effectively with people, to isolate the critical issues and to produce results. She brings to the decision maker candor, contemporary thought and dedicated resources.”

John M. Zinkievich
Vice President, Human Resources
Valmet, Inc.

“Lori Silverman was able to relate on many different levels to our people: analytically, personally, intellectually, philosophically and humorously. Her extensive knowledge base provided everyone with exactly what they needed to have their needs met, so that they could meet the needs of the organization.”

Col. Liz Anderson
Support Group Commander
US Air Force Reserve

“Our goal was to ensure that we didn’t hit the wall as we were growing our business and focusing on delivering services to our clients. We needed to focus on where the market was going in the future so that we could chart a course consistent with that direction. Partners for Progress was an effective catalyst for us to begin to position ourselves to be successful—although sometimes difficult, it was very worthwhile.”

Rob Rogers
Managing Principal
Findley Davies

“We decided to work with Partners for Progress after much organizational ‘soul searching’ led us to conclude that we did not have the expertise to accomplish meaningful improvement in overall quality on our own. Partners for Progress was selected over other firms for two key reasons: First, its basis on the philosophies of Dr. Deming was consistent with our own thinking, and second, Partners for Progress focused on process not just theory, which allowed our teams to implement necessary changes.”

Dennis Moon
Valmet, Inc., Hudson Falls Division

“Originally, we invited Lori Silverman to share her research on the changing role of quality with Lucent’s professional quality community. But the relationship quickly grew into something much more. Lori helped us see the possibility of mobilizing a broad, de-centralized community of practitioners around a new way of contributing value to the company and its customers. Her ability to communicate that possibility and to inspire a team to take it on was coupled with practical and disciplined guidance in making it happen. Her commitment, enthusiasm, and know-how created the energy and confidence we needed to move us to a new and exciting space.”

Peggy Dellinger
Quality and Customer Satisfaction Office
Lucent Technologies

“Lori provided a systematic approach to dealing with organizational change. She offered leading-edge thinking and effective implementation that challenged my thinking and helped me to arrive at new insights. Her coaching and feedback were greatly appreciated and she was very accessible and easy to get a hold of when not on-site. Lori’s engagement with us was truly a partnership. With Lori, there was always an energetic exchange of ideas and two-way feedback that led to strategies focused on attaining our goals.”

William H. Braswell, Jr.
Director of Quality Improvement
Univar Corporation

“I have worked on several major consulting and training projects with Lori and have always been impressed by her depth of knowledge and her insight. She has a natural ability to identify issues and facilitate problem solving. She leads a group toward meaningful strategic planning with ease and confidence.”

Linda Ernst
Training Resource

“When I need to upgrade my thinking I call on Lori for help. True to form, she didn’t just hand over answers; rather she offered frameworks to help me create new possibilities in my consulting practice. Furthermore, she came on a moment’s notice and has consistently followed up with articles, books, and suggestions, long after the bill was paid. I am a better consultant because of my association with Lori.”

Jeff Gill
Manager of Organization Design
Unocal Corporation



Partners for Progress is a registered trademark of Lori L. Silverman.
Registration No: 2320338 Serial No: 75/473249
© 2001-2016 Lori L. Silverman. All Rights Reserved.


Business Storytelling for Dummies