Mt. Rainier, Mt. Rainier National Park, Washington

Neil Baker Consulting and Coaching

Neil J. Baker M.D.

Leadership & team effectiveness

Collaboration makes possible
the highest performance.

Aligned, effective partnerships

--Define the problem and goals.
--Create a partnership map.
--Assess alignment of partnerships.
--Create initial strategies for improvement.
--Implement the strategies.
--Study the results and improve design.

Disrupted, counter-productive work partnerships are very common, even in highly successful organizations.They put critical business results at risk and impede change initiatives.

The gaps very often have to do with awareness and strategy rather than lack of skills. The interpersonal side of things usually gets far less systematic attention than the technical side. Partnerships have to be calibrated well initially and require regular maintenance.

Stress, time pressures and organizational and technical complexity degrade good intentions and even good partnership skills. This is human and inevitable.

To create solutions I work with clients collaboratively to map the network of key partnerships to be leveraged for results. The map visually brings alive the challenges for alignment and helps direct toward strategies.

Changing partnership behaviors usually requires repeated interactions and adjustments of strategy along the way. On occasion results occur surprisingly quickly--the leadership capacity has been there only needing the right prompts to emerge.


Selection of services, frequency and duration are tailored by collaborative planning to best fit the situation. Services may be for groups and/or individuals.

The work is designed to leverage one or more key areas for impact on business results:

  • Managing self and situational awareness
  • Engaging others for motivation and commitment
  • Using authority as a resource
  • Developing aligned, effective partnerships
  • Creating short and long term strategies of interaction


The following steps in the process are not necessarily linear. For example, certain actions may be necessary early on before there is complete understanding.

The intention is not to wait to design action until after a period of analysis. Progress depends on learning in action–designing serial tests of action to learn the way to desired results.


  • identify the organizational situation which will be the focus for work
  • clarify personal, team and organizational vision and goals
  • define the systems context including decision making authority
  • identify strengths and successes


  • generate a multifaceted, objective view of the identified situation
  • collect and interpret data
  • create options for action


  • develop initial short and long term strategies
  • design action steps to optimize benefits vs. risks
  • study results of action to adjust design as needed
  • build sustainability into design


  • determine how to generalize successful action to other situations
  • develop a plan for ongoing learning and development