Strategic Leadership

for Leaders in an Uncertain World


Norman Strauss spent 20 years with Unilever and Lever Brothers in the UK and Canada. During 1976, he began advising the Conservative Party and its think-tank – the Centre for Policy Studies.  In 1977 he correctly forecast the latent decline in trade union power.  He detailed strategies for shadow ministers to test his hypothesis, which subsequently became fact and laid the foundations for the trade union reforms that have subsequently been embraced by the new Labour Party.

In 1979, Sir Keith Joseph requested his secondment from Unilever, to work as a civil servant in No 10 Downing Street.  He has in-depth experience of how a multinational company works, how Whitehall works, how a political party works and, most importantly, how they can inter-relate.  He has lectured at the Civil Service College on the need for reform in the future management of government and maintains a lifelong interest in radical policy-making.

He worked in No 10 Downing Street from 1979 to 1982 as a member of Mrs Thatcher’s first Policy Unit.  His wide-ranging experience in strategic leadership is unique, as he spent some years devising policy for and advising the then Prime Minister, Cabinet Ministers and the No 10 Policy Unit.

In 1982 he designed and named the first ever Strategic Leadership Programme, to be run at Templeton College, Oxford.  It celebrated its 30th programme in November 1997.  It was taken to Australia in 1989 where he regularly lectured.  He has been an Associate Fellow of Templeton College and both helped to design and speak on many tailored programmes, for such companies as IBM, P&O, Royal Mail and BT.

He is also a personal adviser and consultant on leadership, strategy, policy, innovation and culture change.  He quite deliberately splits his time between the practical and the theoretical so that he can evolve and prove new MetaTools® and leading edge techniques for a complex and uncertain world.  Much of this work is incorporated into the new Thinkubator® and Growth Tank® ( a growth-seeking think-tank) services for blue-chip multinationals and public services, offered by Corporate Positioning Services ( C-P-S ) where he is now chairman.

As a Governor of Imperial College, London University, from 1981 to 1989, he took a special interest in how scientific and technological discoveries generate new ventures.  He has been a director of Imperial Software Technology, a joint University and Industry collaborative venture.

In 1990, he was a co-founder of Intellectual R & D – with Sir Douglas Hague, Peter Hennessy and Martin Jacques – which ran the annual Stimulus 2000 series of scenario-scoping programmes and advises on change management at the leading edge, where complex systems leadership is the norm.  Their advice is available to all Thinkubator® clients.  Both Martin Jacques and Sir Douglas Hague, who is president of C-P-S, are trustees of the DEMOS political think-tank and sit on its Advisory Council.

At present he is concentrating most of his time on developing new approaches to Corporate, Institutional and Governmental Strategic Leadership and the required competencies, structures and approaches for achieving success in turbulent times.


lilly close up
Lilly and Norman have worked together since 1994 on various aspects of dynamic systems leadership development. She is an internationally known business transformation consultant, change expert, strategic management and marketing adviser, lecturer, mentor and coach to tomorrow’s leaders of today’s companies.

A selection of Lilly’s assignments:

• Guided transformation of implementation consultancy into desirable takeover target for USA rival with client CEO retaining European Head position.

• Engaging initially unwilling clients in open group conversations leading to breakthrough actions.

• Devising simple, powerful dynamic tracking tools for ‘soft’ outcomes projects providing full, transparent progress measure for executives.

• Bringing new approach to business integration in transitional situations in EMEA through application of ICT and HR approaches that accelerate building commitment and taking responsibility by stakeholders.


Decision making, Complex systems work, Business transformation, Conflict resolution, thought leadership, Strengths development, process change, systems thinking, Leadership development, Organisational Learning, Systems dynamics, Marketing, Program evaluations, Management mentoring and coaching, Innovation, Strategic thinking, Positive Psychology, Learning tools and programs designer, Strategic conversations, Lecturer, Dialogue, Happiness coaching, Deep conversations

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