As a CFO, I’m especially impressed with the tremendous VALUE Core Skills is bringing to our company. Kristine has helped our growing company in many areas over the years— culture-setting, leadership development, strategy facilitation, communications training— resulting in a real, positive impact for us.
Karelle Joun, CFO, Giant Oak Inc
When Kristine facilitated negotiations among government and industry stakeholders on trade-related matters between Canada and the U.S., participants had this to say:
- The facilitated session certainly laid the groundwork for a deal that I believe is satisfactory to both countries. Over the two days of the session, I could feel many misunderstandings and suspicions leaving the room. I was very pleased with Kristine’s performance, energy and knowledge of the issue. She was very well prepared. Her efforts were much appreciated.
- Having a skilled facilitator enabled us to agree in advance on the goals and principles for the meeting, and stay focused on those things in the meetings. There was quite a mix of personalities in the room, with various histories of past interactions that had not always gone well, and Kristine handled that effectively. The ‘red herring’ and rhetoric levels were minimized.
- Kristine did a great job facilitating the sessions. Her prep work in advance of the meeting was evident, as demonstrated in good understanding of technical subject matter. Her presence enabled us to make good progress in achieving the goals established for the meeting.
- I believe that Kristine’s facilitation of the meeting, and having a more diverse group of participants than in past attempts, resulted in a more true sharing of information and a more level playing field in terms of actually discussing facts. This, in turn, has enabled a better level of behavior and discussion in subsequent meetings/interactions on this and other relevant issues. We continue to build on the foundation Kristine helped build.
- For this meeting, the structure Kristine provided during the meeting and pre-meeting prep was very important. It also took the focus away from individuals and by doing so kept attention to the issues/agenda.
- The facilitator did an impressive job in keeping the discussion going and re-directing discussions towards a common goal. My conclusion is that without her we would not have made as much progress and might not be where we are now. I think she helped avoid a trade dispute.
We are so grateful for the day-long leadership retreat conducted by Core Skills. The session was absolutely spot-on. It was great to work on our real issues rather than in the theoretical. Even my initially skeptical colleagues found the time spent to be useful, productive and, even, fun. We now have a great tool box AND an action plan!
— Lisa Posner Olocco, Divisional Vice President, World Learning
The Leadership retreat Kristine conducted was extremely productive for us. We were impressed by her ability to quickly assess the issues and tailor our experience accordingly. At the end of the day, it was hard to believe she wasn’t already a part of our staff! We will reap the benefits of this training for months and years to come.
— Patricia Harrison, Manager, Professional Skills Development Team, World Learning
After only a half-day of Core Skill’s communications training for about 30 of our firm’s analysts, there is a noticeable improvement in the office’s internal communications as well as the analysts’ individual communication skills when working with clients in meetings and over the phone. Kristine’s customized presentation was well-targeted to meet our staff’s needs. Her direct personal experiences in business and finance helped her relate to our team and address our specific issues. She did a phenomenal job keeping the audience engaged.
— Andy Smith, Principal and Senior Managing Director, The McLean Group LLC
Kristine provided one-on-one presentation skills coaching to a handful of our employees who were preparing to brief the most senior officials in Afghanistan. We sent her a collection of smart people, with varying levels of polish, and she returned to us a team of powerful, reliable and flexible presenters comfortable in a room of potentially intimidating people. I can’t overstate the value of Kristine’s business and international experience. Knowing what it’s like to be IN these meetings gives her an understanding of both the presenters and the audience that we wouldn’t have gotten with just any “communications coach”.
— Gary M. Shiffman, PhD, CEO, Giant Oak
In November of 2008, Kristine Wood made her first presentation at Sibley Memorial Hospital’s monthly Coffee with HR training for managers and directors. One of the things that impressed me most about Kristine is that she immediately engaged the group.Our senior staff quickly became comfortable with Kristine’s dynamic and interesting presentations. She was always willing to answer questions on the spot and work with the issues and people in the room rather than sticking to a “script”. One of the ways in which Kristine has had a positive influence on our staff is by always leaving us with a “take-away”, something practical that we can apply to our everyday work situations. And then, during subsequent visits, she follows up with us by asking for examples of how we used the information she gave us. We find this a great way to reinforce the things we learn during her presentations. We’ve been fortunate to have Kristine visit Sibley Memorial Hospital repeatedly and plan to have her back as often as her schedule allows.
— Mary Lethbridge, Assistant to the Vice President and Chief Human Resource Officer
Sibley Memorial Hospital, Washington, DC
The BEST employer-offered session I’ve EVER attended. Not flat, slavish to slides, box-checking but intellectual, vibrant and courageous.
— Hillwood Museum Employee after a Healthy Food presentation
We decided to focus on food with four lunch-time training sessions over the course of a month. Each topic was a slight variation on the theme of eating well. Kristine did an excellent job of making each program unique and informative. Each week, her audience grew as word spread of her energy, humor, and insight. She was able to accommodate both new and returning attendees—making new participants feel welcomed and keeping information fresh for repeat participants.
— Terry Fletcher Shields, Benefits Specialist, The Catholic University of America
While I was the Director of Human Resources at the National 4-H Council, Kristine conducted 6 training sessions for the National 4-H Council including “Generations at Work,” “Workplace Uncertainty,” “Improving Communications Skills,” and “MEET on Common Ground” through UBH (Optum Health). She has since become our go-to facilitator for an annual communications and diversity program for the Youth Opportunities’ summer staff and she’s providing her Core Communicator content organization-wide.She’s always been able to provide 4-H with just exactly what we need, for varied audiences, with great results. She reviewed employee survey results, zeroed-in on some important communications challenges, and put solutions in place. Throughout, she was such a pleasure to work with and provided us with significant added value beyond the actual training.
— Sharon Shainker, Director of Human Resources (Retired), National 4-H Council