Rick Tiemann

Richard (Rick) Tiemann

President, The Executive Group

Rick Tiemann is an accomplished consultant with over 40 years of business experience in both national and international arenas. His background encompasses business development with experience in mergers and acquisitions as well as turnarounds with an emphasis on developing human capital. Having owned several businesses in addition to holding executive positions in various industries, Rick can connect with business leaders because he has walked in their shoes. He is also an executive and behavioral coach, keynote speaker and author.

Rick began his career in the 1970s as a salesman. At this young age, he was quickly promoted to sales manager and went on to buy that company as well as founding two more in the construction industry by age 30. In 1980 he sold them and started a small consulting firm focusing on sales and marketing plans, training and coaching, and sales selection. After an extensive contract to develop their sales and marketing strategy, a client hired Rick as their Director of Sales & Marketing to implement the strategy he had developed. He then moved on to become the Asian Business Development Manager for a worldwide automotive electronics manufacturer and opened the Japanese and Korean markets. Later in his career Rick was hired as President of a fire/security company where he developed his 3-year strategic plan and was responsible for all company growth. Rick left to found The Executive Group consulting firm in 1991 with the original focus being sales growth, business plans, sales selection and development.

Rick Tiemann
Business Meeting

Today, Rick’s practice is much broader in scope. Specializing in the interpretation and application of assessment instruments, The Executive Group’s mission is to help organizations improve their organizational effectiveness by linking human capital with their strategic intent. Having interpreted over 16,000 individual assessments, Rick is considered a subject matter expert in the field of assessments and human behavior. He advises companies in hiring all levels of the organization from entry-level to C-Suite. This expertise is incorporated into all aspects of his consultation – selection, development, leadership and succession planning. He recently completed a study on the behaviors of substance abusers as it relates to the work he does utilizing assessments. As a result of this discovery, he is able to pinpoint tendencies which may significantly influence pre-hiring selection and post-hire development processes. Rick has also conducted other validation and performance studies which have provided standards by which certain organizations have gauged their hiring and/or sales guidelines.

Rick acts as an executive and behavioral coach to executives, managers, salespeople, and supervisors throughout a wide range of industries. He has the unique ability to get the most out of people by creating a readiness to change, learn and grow. By helping them develop new skill sets, he moves individuals into behavior that sustains long and short term goals. Rick utilizes assessments to uncover behavioral traits that present challenges and then incorporates that knowledge to develop a coaching model that lays the groundwork for meaningful growth. This experience led Rick to write and publish his first book, Developing World Class Leaders: The Ultimate Guide to Leadership Development which outlines a comprehensive step-by-step approach for organizations to create a world class leadership development program. The book explores the scope, purpose, methods and possibilities of building such a program while challenging experienced leaders to think about the depth required to sustain results.


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In addition to the many other services offered by Rick and The Executive Group, as a keynote speaker Rick has presented informational, motivational, relevant and entertaining programs to national organizations and associations throughout the country including national and state SHRM, Vistage/TEC, The Georgia Association of Manufacturers, IHRIM, NEHRA and many more.

Rick’s primary goal is to become the strategic business partner to organizations by providing behavioral, assessment, selection, development, coaching and leadership expertise, thereby linking human capital with strategic intent.

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Meet The Team

Dr. Michael Karson

Michael Karson received his PhD in 1978 from the University of Michigan, investigating for his doctoral dissertation the role of neuroticism in perception, using the 16PF. He practiced clinical and forensic psychology for 25 years before entering academia in 2003. He began writing computerized interpretation programs for the 16PF in 1984, one for counselors doing therapy and one for organizations making personnel decisions. He is senior author of 16PF Interpretation in Clinical Practice, which was translated into Spanish, German, and Croatian. Michael subsequently went to law school, and is now on the faculty of the Graduate School of Professional Psychology at the University of Denver.

Dr. David Watterson

Dr. David G. Watterson, Jr., has developed hiring systems, coordinated coaching assignments and delivered training programs for large, multi-national organizations as well as mid-sized and privately held companies. He has served as a behavior coach to athletes, executives, managers and salespeople in both manufacturing and service industries.

As counsel to executive management for corporate leaders, Dr. Watterson advises management on a variety of human resource subjects to improve bottom-line performance and business outcomes.

An acclaimed speaker and author, Dr. Watterson inspires individuals, teams and organizations to clarify their vision, assess current resources, design learning steps, focus on action and commit to results.

His extensive experience with creating and administering personality assessments for talent selection and development – Dr. Watterson has interviewed and interpreted tests for over 20,000 individuals – makes him a recognized authority on this subject. Dr. Watterson has applied his expertise worldwide, serving on executive assignments in Europe, Asia, South America and Australia.

A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Dr. Watterson holds a Master of Arts degree and a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology. He is a licensed psychologist in Ohio.

Brian A. Wilkinson

Brian brings over 30 years of experience in assessments, coaching, and leadership and organizational development. During his career he worked with leaders and high-potentials from C-Suite to front-line supervisors in Fortune 100 and mid-size companies across four industries (insurance, restaurant, manufacturing, and healthcare) and state government.

In every company Brian was typically in a dual-role of internal consultant to operations and functional leaders and department/program leader within human resources. As such, Brian has much experience in navigating the dynamics of consulting, working with cross-functional teams, and being accountable for providing products and services that meet internal customers’ needs and achieve measurable impact on financial and/or HR metrics.

Brian holds an MS in Psychology with an emphasis in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from Kansas State University, and a MA in Public Administration and BS Magna Cum Laude from Georgia State University. He has certifications in assessment instruments including the 16PF, Hogan Leadership Forecast Series and MBTI. Brian also has certifications in Drexler/Sibbet Team Performance Model and Prosci Change Management. Finally, Brian served in the GA Army National Guard / US Army Reserves for a total of 13 years, completing Army Officer Candidate School and achieving the rank of Captain.

Dr. Gary Kustis

For over twenty years, Gary has worked as a management consultant helping large and small organizations by evaluating individuals for hire or promotion into critical jobs, giving feedback to key stakeholders about employee performance, and providing coaching and development services to those who need it. In addition, he has considerable experience creating and validating large-scale selection systems.

Gary has worked on a variety of different projects for organizations that include helping private equity firms to complete due diligence audits of management teams, developing and administering employee opinion surveys, designing 360-degree feedback instruments for company-wide development initiatives, and providing unique training experiences on subjects like emotional intelligence, improv skills for managers, and improving interviewing skills. Further, many companies rely on his expertise to help with team building and conflict management.

Gary holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s degree in Consumer and Industrial Psychology from Cleveland State University. Gary also has a Ph.D. in Business (Micro-Organizational Theory and Personnel, with a Minor in Statistics), from Kent State University. During his time at Kent State, he held a Teaching Fellowship in the College of Business Administration, and he has taught occasional classes and given guest lectures at various Universities in northeast Ohio.

Gary is a Member of the Academy of Management, the American Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science, and the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology. He continues to do research with fellow academics and other practitioners, the results of which have been published in several academic journals and presented at various academic conferences.

Joe Masi

Joe Masi has been a professional coach and counselor for over 20 years, guiding teams and individuals into greater self-awareness, optimized performance, and personal connection. Specializing in communication/presentation training, group dynamics as well as personal transformation, Joe is a master facilitator and coach who serves in the corporate, and personal arenas. Joe believes that the most powerful path to change and transformation, whether it be an organization, team, or individual, occurs from a “together” mindset.  Together, with the right butts in the right seats and proper facilitation, all things are possible.

Holding a master’s in counseling, an MFA in acting, and certifications in numerous performance assessments, Joe has artfully integrated methodologies and applications from each of these resources into a very flexible, intuitive and adaptive coaching approach that places personal connection, collective intelligence and humble leadership at the forefront of all aspects of personal and professional development.

Working with Joe is guaranteed to shift mindset from outdated systems of performing to more innovative and collaborative ways of achieving success and fulfillment.

We Serve As A Strategic Business Partner To A Diverse Client Base.

Founded in 1991, The Executive Group adopted the philosophy of treating each client as a partner whose success is as important as our own. From the beginning, we understood the most pressing needs of any organization lies in their people process. Our specialty is to facilitate an organization’s ability to identify and develop leadership, maximize sales force effectiveness and select and maximize talent at all levels.

We start by listening. Clearly understanding what our clients are facing allows us to customize a strategy unique to their needs and their culture. Our practice combines over 40 years of business experience with expertise using an array of valid and reliable assessment products to select and optimize talent and to create sustainable business strategies for future growth and success.

How can we help you?

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Growth usually takes on one of two very distinct pathways: a linear path and an exponential one. The latter sounds great, right? Just pull a few levers and watch your organization reap the benefits of exponential growth, making all of your dreams come true. Wait till that next quarterly review, you’ll show them you mean business!

Except that isn’t the entire story, and consistent leadership development results are better than exponential growth that isn’t sustainable.

So why talk about exponential growth in the domain of creating better leaders in the workplace? Well, because it never hurts to have something to aspire to. It never hurts to see what can indeed happen when consistent action is scaled out. That’s the key to making leadership development a potent component in today’s fast paced business environment.

What does feedback really mean? We talk about feedback, but we know that not all feedback is created equal. Feedback should begin with empathy, which is truly understanding the other person's perspective. From there, we want to come forward with evidence that backs up the statements we're going to make to that person. Direct, professional, and straightforward is the name of the game here.

Feedback and accountability go hand in hand within the world of strategically assessing leadership strengths and weaknesses.

What Comprehensive Feedback Isn't

Sometimes it's important to highlight what something isn't before we can really start visualizing what it is constructively. If you want to build or even transform current feedback and accountability processes, here's what to avoid most:

  • Relying on one assessment. There is no perfect assessment, and it's critical to avoid idolizing any assessment as the One True Measure of performance

  • Keeping resources too narrow. This isn't about trying to use as few resources as possible. Pull out all of the tools and see what's reasonable in terms of the specific leader being refined for greater opportunities (the ultimate goal)

  • Don't settle for just covering strengths and weaknesses in terms of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Full insight requires full analysis; KPIs are just a shortcut.

Collecting quantitative data is important, but don’t skip the opportunities to collect qualitative data along the way as well. For example,

Breaking Down Strategic Leadership Assessment - The Best Path Forward for Growth

In order to get the growth needed to stay competitive, it's time to go back to the drawing board. What does strategic leadership assessment look like in action? Well, the important point is that it begins with realizing the end goal: you're getting insight into an individual's makeup and identifying what their true strengths and weaknesses are. We're going back to the 3D Leadership model as one of the key foundational points of this plan.

Staying the Course

Motivation is a big topic in the business world because we're used to watching people quit. Why do people quit before they've reached the finish line? Sometimes it's a matter of not being able to visualize the end. Or perhaps it's not having enough milestones to reflect upon as they move deeper into their journey. Not everyone will finish their leadership development plan, or approach it with enthusiasm.

Reassurance isn't a bad thing, and it can help bolster morale to the point where employees buy back in. For entry-level employees, leadership development can feel impossible because they're starting their journey with a lot to cover. For the more seasoned leader, development often takes a "been there, done that" feeling.

Dive Deeper Into Refinement With Developing World Class Leaders: The Ultimate Guide to Leadership Development

Digging into the roots of better leadership development isn’t an easy journey. Yet it is absolutely essential for companies of all sizes.

Did you miss the deep dive on assessments? Check out the Strategic View of Hiring podcast episode, Exploring the World of Assessments.

Check out the book store and order a copy of Developing World Class Leaders: The Ultimate Guide to Leadership Development today.

To receive a copy of our Leadership Competency Inventory, complete with 64 competencies, just send an email.