1.    What are others saying about your services?
2.    What  types of clients have you worked with?
3.    Why should I select Kelleher Associates?
4.    What services and results can I expect from Kelleher Associates?
5.    Is there really a difference in Career Management and Executive Coaching firms?
6.    How do I know your services will help me?

Client Testimonials Print

From time to time we interview a client or former client about his or her career transition and their experience with Kelleher Associates.

Each client comes to us with a unique set of circumstances.  Our personalized career coaching addresses their specific needs and ensures a smoother transition.  Their individual experiences with Kelleher attest to this.

Mark Trabbold (2012) Print

Mark Trabbold  is a visionary technical leader with 30 years of solid accomplishments in product innovation, process engineering, and quality assurance in the construction products/composites and glass industries. His most recent position was Vice President of R & D for the insulation division of a global building materials company.  He recently joined the Ben Franklin Technology Partners as Director, Business Development in the Technology Commercialization Group.

You were directed to a national outplacement company by your former employer before you become aware of Kelleher Associates.  Please compare these two experiences and explain why you chose Kelleher.

Many services were similar in terms of weekly meetings and opportunities to meet in groups.  I preferred Kelleher’s more hands-on, one-on-one coaching approach and the chance to interact with my consultant as well as others in the firm when I was ready.  The live mock interview session with a stranger (at the time) at Kelleher I perceived as enormously more helpful than just answering questions on a computer screen, as offered by the other firm.

What Kelleher services proved to be especially valuable during your search?

Since I landed quickly I did not have the opportunity to utilize all of Kelleher’s services but one thing I found valuable was the accessibility to the other coaches and their contacts, particularly when what I will call “rumors of opportunities” surfaced.

You took an unconventional career step and joined Ben Franklin Technology Partners. What was your motivation in doing so and what role did Kelleher Associates play in helping you evaluate the pros and cons of this change?

My biggest motivation was the chance to do something quite different from what I have always done.  I could have waited for something more conventional, but I realized that “different” was interesting to me.  My coach, Mitch Wienick, was able to reframe some of the concerns I had and present those concerns in a different light, showing me that some issues I had once considered “cons” were either not show stoppers or were actually “positives”.

Dan Haas (2012) Print

Dan Haas is an executive business leader with experience in IT consulting & outsourcing, SaaS/cloud supply chain solutions and sourcing services.  Dan has expertise in P&L management, sales, service delivery and product marketing and has significant international experience working across many industry verticals, including chemicals, plastics & rubber, oil & gas, natural resources and manufacturing.  His superior skills in people leadership, business management, decision making, strategic direction setting and execution and C level business development were honed at such firms as Dow Chemical, DuPont Dow Elastomers and Computer Sciences Corporation.

What is your new job, and how did you find it?

I recently joined Accenture as the client solutions lead for the Chemicals and Natural Resources operating unit in North America.  I found the opportunity through a contact with an executive recruiter in my network.

What did you learn about the importance of networking through your work with Kelleher Associates?

I learned that a job search that is built on any other foundation (hope, on-line trolling, reliance on retained search firms, etc.) is likely to be a long, slow and disappointing process.  But, a job search built on a solid foundation of active networking is not only effective, but can be a rewarding and enjoyable process in and of itself.

What did you like best about working with Kelleher Associates? 

Having a solid, proven process - supported by proven tools and techniques.

Knut Fenner (2012) Print

Knut Fenner is an experienced global business leader who has worked for a number of well-respected international companies where he has held senior leadership positions.  Knut recently accepted a position as Senior Director of Business Development at Matcor Inc., a privately held company in Bucks County.  MATCOR is a leading cathodic protection and corrosion prevention engineering design firm, providing environmentally beneficial systems and services to global oil, gas, water and chemical clients for nearly 40 years.  It offers proprietary corrosion protection products, installation, cathodic protection testing, maintenance and complete corrosion protection project management. MATCOR specializes in protecting the infrastructure of the oil and gas, electric utility, transportation and construction industries.
How did you learn about Kelleher Associates for Career Transition Services?
In 2010 I met Anne Robson shortly after joining the Greater Philadelphia Senior Executive Group (GPSEG). During a follow-up meeting we discussed Kelleher and its offerings.  I was not in transition at that time but my takeaway from that meeting was that should the need arise I would give Anne and Kelleher a call.  One year later the Swiss company that I worked for decided to downsize my position. One of my first calls after that was to Anne Robson at Kelleher.

What sold you on using Kelleher Associates?
This was an easy decision.  I was very impressed with Anne’s professionalism and with how much Kelleher was connected into the region and its different industries.  This was very important to me since I did not want to leave the area.

Maxine Weber (2012) Print

Maxine Weber is an award winning consumer products marketing executive with demonstrated success for Fortune 500 and private equity companies.  Armed with a degree in biochemistry and an MBA, this conceptual thinker proved to be adept at growing business with key customers through focused business analysis.  Her strong relationship building and communication skills drove her success at such firms as Scott Paper, Campbell Soup, Vlasic Foods and Pinnacle Foods.

Maxine’s new employer is Firmenich.  Swiss and family owned, it creates perfumes and flavors for the world’s most desirable brands.

What is your new position, and how did you find it?

My position is Business Development Manager at Firmenich.  I found it through a fellow job seeker I met via a connection at an Execunet meeting.  Firmenich was one of my target companies and this job seeker happened to know someone there.

What was the driving force behind your decision to choose Kelleher Associates?

My previous employer offered outplacement via another firm but I was not happy with that program.  I knew that I needed more individual attention and I wanted to work with a counselor face to face.  Someone I knew through one of my volunteer activities recommended Kelleher.

What did you learn about the importance of networking through your work with Kelleher Associates?

I did not understand how to network and I had a real fear about putting myself out there.  I wasn’t ready to face a possible rejection.  What I learned is that like many things we fear, overcoming it just takes practice.  I started by practicing with people I knew until I felt more comfortable.  What I ultimately discovered is that you can learn something from every connection that you make.  Ironically, people I didn’t know were sometimes the most helpful to me in my search.

Kim Hall (2012) Print

Kimberly Hall is a senior nonprofit executive with a track record of delivering profitable growth in diverse, challenging and competitive markets.  This entrepreneurial and resourceful problem solver is highly proficient at capitalizing on opportunities not seen by others and successfully converting them into thriving alliances.  A passionate leader, she has been a driving force in Chester County, PA for many years, beginning with the Chester County Chamber of Business and Industry and most recently, with the Chester Country Historical Society.

What is your new job, and how did you find it?

My new job is Executive Director of Chester County Futures, Inc., a mentoring, scholarship and academic enrichment program for low-income Chester County, PA, public high school students.

A friend saw the job description, thought I would be interested and forwarded it to me.

Why did you choose Kelleher Associates for your recent transition?

One of my business associates met a Kelleher coach - Tammy Beil, at a networking event and recommended that I contact her.

What did you learn about the importance of networking through your work with Kelleher Associates?

Although “Networking” was not one of my challenges I can’t be more emphatic about how critical this is to business success.  In addition, the immense satisfaction one gets from helping others is its own reward.   This is undeniably one of the essential skills that enabled me to land my new position.

What did you like best about working with Kelleher Associates?

The key here for me was being able, via a neutral party, to expose my challenges and discover/articulate my strengths. Tammy led me through a process of openness and thoughtful discussion that bolstered my confidence and helped me move through difficult areas that we felt were holding me back.

Mary Brawner (2011) Print

Mary Brawner has held scientific leadership and discovery roles for major pharmaceutical companies and run her own innovation consulting firm serving both established and early stage clients. She recently accepted a position as Business Capability Director for Discovery Automation for the Genomics and Biologics Groups of a major global pharmaceutical company (BMS).

How did you learn about Kelleher Associates for Career Transition services?

I learned about Kelleher Associates from my Financial Advisor, Gregory Sarian, who has sent other clients to Kelleher and was very complimentary about their services.

What sold you on using Kelleher Associates for your Career Transition services?

I was impressed with their knowledge of transition challenges, their connections within the Philadelphia Life Sciences community, and the positive attitude they brought to the search process.

What Kelleher services and methodologies proved to be especially valuable during your search?

I was really helped by going through the PARS (Problem-Action-Results) process with Mitch Wienick who was my coach. As a scientist, I found it difficult to relate my experiences to “business value” descriptors. Mitch was able to pick out business value themes within my PARS which enabled me, with his help, to create a very compelling resume.


Mars Susas (2011) Print

Mars Susas has accepted the position of VP-Business Development and Strategy at NRG Energy.  This Fortune 500 and S&P 500 Company owns and operates one of the country’s largest and most diverse power generation portfolios and has ~2 million electricity customers.

How did you come to choose Kelleher Associates for your recent transition?

I was presented with a few options during my transition and after talking to some former colleagues I was concerned with the level of support I would receive from some of the national executive transition firms.  I was looking for more of a personal approach to the search process. 

Kelleher was recommended to me by a former manager, who is now a CEO of a building materials company.  He described Kelleher as a local executive transition firm that offered a process that would be very helpful to anyone going through a transition and found that the coaches there offered personal support.  It was exactly what I was looking for and it turned out to be a great decision.

We understand that you continued with an active consulting assignment while conducting your job search.  What issues did that pose and what would you advise other job seekers trying to simultaneously manage these two activities?

The biggest issue is carving out enough time for the job search.  I knew a search was going to look like another job, so it definitely felt like I was juggling several clients at once. 

What worked for me was blocking specific days for search activities;  it forced me to spend time on my job search and to finish any consulting assignments in their allotted time.  I also made sure not to take on a full time consulting assignment, essentially prioritizing my search over any consulting work.

Melinda Decker (2011) Print

Melinda Decker recently started a new position as Director, Marketing – Commercial Innovation with MedImmune.  With its cutting-edge biological products, MedImmune is a leader in scientific and medical progress.

Why did you choose Kelleher Associates for your recent transition?

I felt an outside perspective could be a valuable addition to my search process.  I hoped that some of Kelleher’s connections could open doors and/or broaden my network in important ways.  Although the expense was something I weighed carefully, I felt that if I could land a great opportunity sooner with professional help or if I could land a better opportunity than I would have otherwise, it would be very worthwhile.  Kelleher received high marks from people I talked with and I was impressed when I met with them to discuss what they offered.

How valuable were the exploratory sessions when deciding which career path was best for you?

These sessions were helpful in providing focus to my search and shoring up my positioning and messaging.  Additionally, they were helpful in assessing my job options and making timely decisions.

How useful did you find Kelleher Associates as a catalyst for networking and connecting you to people who were relevant to your search objectives?

This is a strength of the firm. I was working with Mitch Wienick and Tammy Beil. Mitch helped connect me to critical people with whom I had productive, insightful conversations about positions I was seeking, companies that represented quality targets, and other connections who could be helpful to me.  Tammy helped me think through how I could best approach these new contacts. I am hopeful these new relationships will continue.

Tom Wellman (2011) Print
Tom Wellman is a senior financial executive who recently accepted a position as Chief Accounting Officer, Senior Vice President and Controller for Ports America in Phoenix, AZ.  Ports America is the premier stevedoring company in the U.S.
What were your most challenging issues in looking for a new position after relocating from Hawaii to the Philadelphia area? 
  • Identifying and getting introduced to target companies, regional recruiters and key networkers.
  • Coming from so far away, it was challenging to gain credibility in the local job market.  Companies and people didn’t know me or my past employers and didn’t have a reason to work with me. Kelleher Associates helped me to gain credibility in a community that is very ‘local.’
  • Learning about the Mid-Atlantic business community.
  • Determining which companies would be both great to work for and a good cultural fit for me.
  • Settling into the job search routine after not having had to look for a job since college.
  • Staying motivated in the search.
You were open to a number of senior financial roles – Chief Financial Officer, Chief Accounting Officer and Controller, for example. How did you pick and choose the positions to pursue and was Kelleher helpful to you in making these selections?
My coach, Mitch Wienick, helped me evaluate my skills and experience, determine which types of roles would be most relevant to my background and interests, prioritize my goals, develop good marketing materials, research companies, screen opportunities, and build relationships with people that would not only help with the job search but that would be life-long friends.
You took advantage of Kelleher’s mock interview process which was recorded and constructively critiqued. How did this help you during your search process?
I thought my interview skills were very good before I did the mock interviews and the video interview.  This was a wake-up call!  While my basic communication skills were great, there were some glaring issues that came up that were easy to fix.  Not only did the improved skills help me in the job search, but this was a great refresher for lazy habits formed over many years.  I’ve used the communication skills that Mitch and Jim Miller discussed with me many times during my on-boarding.  It was a good reminder that critical communication skills are important whether in a job search or in other life/business encounters. 
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