City of Edmonton






Alberta, Canada

“Possessing a rare level of skill, Sandra and Joel create a uniquely safe and trusting environment that facilitates full self-reflection, exploration and development.

They aren’t afraid to challenge barriers and ask difficult, uncomfortable questions — questions that support a process that leads to deep and lasting personal change.

Sandra and Joel are exceptionally competent and possess an amazing acumen and depth of knowledge about the arena of human interaction. They have developed useful tools to investigate complex systems that allow for real life application. I am a better leader, mother, partner and friend because of the time I’ve spent with them.”

– Linda Sahli, City Clerk

The challenge

In recent years, Edmonton’s municipal government has faced increased ambiguity, complexity, volatility, uncertainty and rapid change.

Working with the City’s top 800 leaders at the supervisory, mid- and senior-level, we were tasked with building their overall leadership capacity and ability to lead more effective teams.

Our solution

From police and transportation to engineering and waste management, we grouped leaders from vastly different departments into small cohorts of four to five individuals.

Over nine months, we provided 40 hours of focused training to each cohort, introducing the teams to new, fresh perspectives about effective leadership.

Across the City, the leaders greatly valued the training they received, and their evaluations of the program and its impact on their professional lives was extraordinarily high. Our program increased the cognitive complexity of our participants, leading to real changes in decision-making ability, leadership behaviour and effectiveness.

Real results

With approximately 40 hours of curriculum, over 9 months, the leaders gained more than two full years of graduate school in complex-thinking skills.

Average gain in complex-thinking skills

>2 full years of graduate school

Supervisors leap in complex-thinking

Beyond their senior leaders

Significant behavioral change

Leading more effectively

*The data

Our pre-post research measure is widely recognized as the purest and most valid measure of leadership thinking available today. The Lectical Decision-Making Assessment (LDMA) presents real-world workplace dilemmas, asking leaders to discuss the nature of problems, propose solutions and describe an ideal decision-making process for similar situations.

When making decisions, leaders who perform at higher levels on the LDMA (higher Lectical scores) demonstrate more agility, response flexibility, creativity, nuance, humility and perspectival skill (the ability to effectively take, seek and integrate multiple perspectives). They are also more likely to advance further in their career.

For more information on this project and its data, please see: Bridging the Complexity Gap – Clear Impact Consulting Group

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