Austen Advisory partners with industry specialists across the globe to ensure highest quality, forward thinking work. Here is more information about some of our consulting partners and their areas of expertise.
Founder, Whole Business Wellness Limited, C-suite leader
Brian founded Whole Business Wellness in 2020 to provide multi-disciplinary wellness services to organisations using resilience building, yoga, mindfulness, design thinking and 30 years of business leadership experience to build wellness management capabilities at individual, team and organisational level. Brian is a board member of The Women’s Foundation and was co-founding Chair of the Male Allies initiative. He was recognised for this as the 2017 American Chamber of Commerce Champion for the Advancement of Women. Previously, Brian was Chief Operating Officer at Baker McKenzie for 8 years and before that spent 13 years at Linklaters in a variety of global leadership roles.
Additionally, Brian is developing a portfolio career including mentoring, consulting to law firms, additional NGO board roles and NED roles.
Brian was born in Belfast and has previously lived and worked in London and Paris. He is a qualified lawyer, has an MBA from Cranfield University and is an accredited MBTI practitioner. Brian and Mary have two adult children living and working in the UK, and a West Highland terrier living with them in HK. When not walking the dog, Brian enjoys watersports, including sailing, outrigger canoeing and open water swimming.
Resilience & Leadership Coach
Dhruti has 15 years of business experience in Human Resources, Organizational Development, and Marketing.
Born in Mumbai, India, she has had the opportunity to work in three different countries – India, USA, and Singapore, which has solidified her understanding of various cultures. Working in different geographies has also given her a unique perspective on human behaviour. She believes that despite the cultural diversities and varied outward appearances, at our core, we all want to succeed and experience the joy of following our passion.
Dhruti partners with organisations and individuals to build their resilience, and supports them in achieving their goals. She is the author of the book titled ‘The Resilient Entrepreneur – Beat the odds and pave the path to a successful start-up’.
Learning Experience Designer, Facilitator, Corporate Trainer and Consultant
Jacob is a highly experienced and internationally sought-after learning experience designer, dynamic facilitator, corporate trainer and consultant. He has been a trusted external partner to various organisations in creating efficiencies for global teams through consulting on assessment and development projects, designing and facilitating leadership development initiatives, corporate off-sites, vision/mission/value workshops, skill-based training and one-on-one coaching engagements. Recently, Jacob has specialised in helping clients to create learner-centric and activity-based learning experiences that result in behavioural change. Areas of expertise include the Accelerated Learning Design Methodology, Group Facilitation, Kolb’s Experiential Learning Model, High Performance Learning Journeys, Learning Transfer Techniques and Measuring Training Effectiveness.
Over the past decade, Jacob has gained broad Asia experience living and working in over ten countries including Hong Kong, Japan, India, Korea, China, Singapore, Bangladesh, Thailand, and Malaysia to name a few. This experience has provided him with a deep understanding of both Asian and international business cultures.
Assessment Expert, Cross-cultural Working Specialist and Productivity and Work-Life Balance Coach
Ellen is a Chartered Occupational Psychologist and with more than fourteen years of business experience. After her Masters degree in 2001 at the University of Manchester’s Business School, she worked for a small consultancy before joining SHL, a UK-based talent measurement and management consultancy. She has been based in both the UK and Ireland, and was part of the UK management team when she left SHL in 2012 to become an independent consultant.
Since then she has worked extensively across SE Asia and the Middle East, giving her the opportunity to develop her interest in working across cultures with clients in many sectors, from oil and gas to retail, from financial services to manufacturing. Her work has included the design and delivery of: executive assessments; large-scale assessment programs; complex exercise design; psychometric products; job analysis and competency design; management development programs; 360 degree feedback facilitation and coaching; and training courses. She is a Prince2 trained Project Manager.
Based in Thailand for the last three years, she is an Associate Fellow of the British Psychology Society, and writes a popular blog and resources hub at ellenbard.com to provide evidence-based advice and support to people on dealing with the challenges and demands of today’s working environment. She has been featured in several high profile publications – including the Huffington Post and the Financial Times – as a thought leader in productivity, and the challenges of work-life balance in the modern fast-paced, technology-enabled world.
Emerging Leader and Organisational Development Specialist
Alexandra has extensive experience in Human Capital Consulting across Asia Pacific. She is now based in California, USA. With 12+ years in professional practice, Alex has worked in both client-facing and internal practitioner roles, delivering programs across the full talent spectrum.
Alex partners with clients to design and deliver impactful development initiatives, talent strategy and change management projects, to coach high-potentials, and to review and optimize in-house talent functions to deliver an employee-centric model of performance.
Alex has a focus on Emerging Leaders, and an interest in leveraging innovation and technology to co-create meaningful, high-performance cultures.
Alex has a BA in Psychology from the University of Newcastle, Australia, an EMCCC from INSEAD and is an IECL certified coach.
Talent Assessment Specialist
Birthe Carlsson is a highly experienced Talent Assessment and Development consultant with a broad range of international experience across various markets gained over a 20 year period. Today Birthe is a Founding Partner of Enlight Consulting Group, based in Sweden while conducting assessment projects in Europe, Asia and US. Birthe’s expertise includes the design and implementation of Assessment/ Development Centres right across the organisational hierarchy from Graduates to General Managers/ Business Leaders. Birthe has consulted to clients across multiple industries. Most recently, Birthe was the Lead Assessment Consultant at Future Leaders International, based in Singapore between 2010 – 2013. Prior to that, she was the Practice Leader for Shl Professional Services in Asia based in Singapore. In this role she was responsible for the delivery of consulting services in South East Asia, Hong Kong and China. Between 2002 and 2008, Birthe was the Principal Consultant at Shl’s Gothenburg office in Sweden. During this period, she was responsible for managing and conducting projects at a global level with leading Swedish MNC, such as IKEA and Volvo Group.
Developing understanding through discussion and capabilities through play
Alex is an independent work psychologist with over nine years of professional experience. Prior to this, he was a PhD-trained neuropsychologist. His interests focus on two strands of developing people. The first is helping people resolve particular obstacles that they face, either in their immediate working priorities or more broadly for their professional life. Together, a fuller picture of the situation gets built, allowing understanding of why things have gone astray and who has the agency to change this.
Another strand is unlocking capabilities through experiential learning. This includes increasing confidence, creativity, team collaboration and even charisma. He uses insights from psychology and neuroscience together with engaging techniques drawn from games and theatre resulting in evidence-based and lively ways to develop. He is an Associate Fellow of the British Psychology Society and regularly writes for them at the award-winning science website The Research Digest.
Assessment and Team Engagement Specialist
Louisa has specialised in Executive Search and Assessment for over 10 years. She has a BSc and MSc in Occupational Psychology from the University of Nottingham. Louisa commenced her career in Europe where she supported clients including Vodafone, Shell, KPMG and eBay to hire mid level and senior executives.
Louisa then spent the last three years in Hong Kong building a business providing assessment services, working with global and APAC organisations such as Groupon, GE, TMF, Coats, Pearson and World Pay.
More recently she has set up an art and music production agency which serves both the consumer and corporate sectors. With her corporate clients, she has developed innovative art and music events/solutions to develop teams and build engagement. Louisa believes that art can be an powerful way of encouraging self-expression and conceptual thinking. It can also be used as part of a recruitment activity to see how candidates bring ideas to life, apply newly learned techniques and collaborate.
Leadership Branding & Communication Skills Specialist
Nidhi Kush Shah is an internationally sought-after and experienced Facilitator, Keynote Speaker, writer and Business Coach specializing in Executive Leadership Branding, Communication & Presentation Skills and Intercultural Skills.
In the last 9 years, Nidhi has gained corporate leadership, business development and training and coaching experience across Australia, Hong Kong, Macau, China and India. Since its inception in 2012, her company ‘Alchemy Consulting’ has rapidly gained popularity for providing unique, interactive and customized Learning and Development solutions. She loves traveling and learning about new cultures and has been to over 20 countries in her quest to explore. She uses stories, case studies and research examples from around the world to turn her classroom into an interactive, inspiring and fun learning environment.
Nidhi has been invited to speak and facilitate trainings at organizations like EY, Christie’s, Mercer Consulting, Ogilvy & Mather, Pernod Ricard, Peninsula Merchandising Limited, The Women’s Foundation, The American Chamber of Commerce, The French Chamber of Commerce, The Hong Kong Trade and Development Council and many more.
Executive Coach and Experiential Learning Specialist
Mac Ling is an Executive Coach with Hong Kong-based Coaching Collective. He has been working with leaders in the not-for-profit and for-profit worlds since 2006 and has coached leaders from a wide variety of spheres of influence: entrepreneurs, business leaders, designers, pastors, restauranteurs, NGO leaders, management consultants, and others. He has a deep passion for developing immersive experiences which drive his clients to see the world with new lenses, enabling powerful self-reflection and transformational growth. In 2013, he launched urbanTOX, an entrepreneurial venture in Bangkok offering customised travel experiences which combined storytelling, curated “local” experiences, and culinary adventures.
Mac has a B.Sc. from UC San Diego in Cognitive Science, and an M.B.A. from the University of Virginia. Mac is a certified Advanced Master Coach and was trained at the Center for Advanced Coaching.
Executive Coach & Personal Branding Specialist
Janine is an experienced executive coach with a speciality in personal branding for individuals and corporate teams. She has over fifteen years of global business experience and six years of coaching corporate clients in Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong.
As Director of Roar Coaching Janine delivers bespoke coaching programs that enable strong and sustainable results in the area of self-actualisation, leadership and personal brand mastery.
Janine is able to bring a wealth of cross-industry experience to the coaching partnership having worked with clients in mining, banking, telecommunications, finance, transport, retail, business consultation, government, equipment, diary, property, media, engineering, NGO, health, and energy.
Janine is an Accredited Business Partner of Walking TALL International, a global personal brand
program that aims to maximise the investment in the corporate personality through the enablement and engagement of an organisation’s people.
Janine holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Curtin University of Technology in Australia, an ACC Certification with the International Coaching Federation (ICF), a Lambent International Coaching Certification (ICC, EQA EMCC) and is a certified Neuro Linguistics Programming Practitioner (NLP).
Michael has over 16 years’ experience as a Talent Solutions consultant and has worked for global firms like Mercer as well as startups like Censeo Corporation. Today, Michael is the founder and principal consultant of Mian Talent Solutions where he focuses on helping companies make better “people” decisions. This includes identifying the right talent, coaching professionals and leaders to achieve goals, and creating a more engaged workforce. Michael does this by creating and leveraging different tests, assessments, and surveys that provide information about how people perform, think, and feel in given work settings. Specific interests and expertise include Competency Design, Assessment Feedback and Coaching, Employee Satisfaction and Engagement, Test Development/Certification, and Work Simulations. Michael has a Ph.D. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology and is certified in the Hogan Personality Assessment and Employee Engagement MAGIC (DecisionWise). He is an active member of the Society for Industrial & Organizational Psychology (SIOP).