Irish-founded global CEO advisory firm Teneo keeps on growing - with new offering for post-pandemic world
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Irish-founded global CEO advisory firm Teneo keeps on growing - with new offering for post-pandemic world

THE global CEO advisory firm Teneo, which was co-founded by an Irishman, continues to grow at pace throughout the pandemic.

The organisation, which is largely based in the USA, but has 850 employees based at 20 offices around the world, works exclusively with the CEOs and senior executives of the world’s leading companies.

Chairman and CEO Declan Kelly, who hails from Tipperary, founded the company with Doug Band and Paul Keary in 2011.

Their aim was to provide high-level clients with strategic counsel across a full range of key objectives and issues - integrating disciplines such as strategic communications, investor relations, digital advisory, diversity & inclusion, management consulting, physical & cyber risk advisory and restructuring for the most complex of business challenges.

Their client list soon began to fill, including a significant number of Fortune 100 and FTSE 100 firms, as well as other global corporations.

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A decade later - and following an unprecedented year for businesses worlwide due to a global pandemic - the firm continues to thrive, with a bulging client list, a reported $700 million valuation (according to The Currency), and a long list of global influencers signed up as ‘Senior Advisors’.

That list of advisors includes the likes of Ireland rugby star Brian O’Driscoll, former Conservative party leader William Hague, former US Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and many more.

Tipperary senior hurling manager Liam Sheedy has been appointed Vice Chairman of Ireland at Teneo

Not only has the organisation withstood the pandemic, last month they launched a new branch of the global business.

Through Teneo Performance they are now offering a targeted service to help companies “successfully navigate the long term social and business impacts brought about by the events of the last 12 months”.

“Specifically, Teneo Performance will help CEOs improve performance across all levels of their organization through experiential programs and organisational changes, built around new norms of diversity, inclusion, purpose and sustainability and fully integrated with new hybrid models of working,” the firm explains.

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“Teneo Performance will be built around Senior-led and delivered interactive development programs and mentorship covering a range of areas including corporate purpose development, culture transformation, organizational alignment, talent strategy, ESG and DEI leadership and others. It will also combine proven development models with experiential content to create both in-person and virtual workshops,” they add.

The business will be led by Chairman of Teneo International, Chris Wearing, and will leverage expertise from across the firm, as well as from the firm’s ‘Senior Advisors’, which they explain “includes the former CEOs and leaders of several of the world’s largest companies”.

Interestingly, that new business is being launched initially in Ireland - where it will work closely with senior executives of both Irish and multinational corporations.

Liam Sheedy, being congratulated by Tipperary hurling sponsor Declan Kelly, CEO, Teneo, following the GAA Hurling All-Ireland Senior Championship Final match between Kilkenny and Tipperary at Croke Park in Dublin in 2019

It will also leverage the insights and expertise of Teneo’s senior team - including organisational performance advisors James Bowen and Brian MacNiece, who joined Teneo last year through the acquisition of Kotinos Partners in September 2020, a Dublin-based consultancy focused on organisational performance.

In addition to that, the firm has recently appointed Tipperary senior hurling manager and former Bank of Ireland director Liam Sheedy as Vice Chairman of the business in Ireland.

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That appointment will mean Sheedy, who is also a board member at Sport Ireland, will play a critical role in leading Teneo Performance as it makes its mark in the coming months.

Of the launch of the new Teneo offering, fellow Irishman Declan Kelly said: “Now is the right time to launch Teneo Performance as the world returns to the workplace and CEOs will need to find new ways to engage and motivate themselves, their teams and their organisations to be successful in what we call the ‘New Different’ global operating environment.”

Rugby star Brian O'Driscoll is one of Teneo's 'Special Advisors'

He added: “To really build performance, companies must internalise current experiences from multiple, diverse sources – including wins but also experiences of significant challenge and setbacks.

“Teneo brings direct exposure to leaders who have been at the coalface of performance and have compelling stories to tell.

“We are delighted to be starting this business with a great team in Ireland and look forward to expanding it to be of a global scale over the coming weeks and months to help our clients around the world.”

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Teneo Senior Advisor Ursula Burns added: “Corporate boards around the world are focused squarely on the issues Teneo Performance is working to solve in response to the need for diversity and the dramatic changes to the workplace caused by Covid-19.

“The post-pandemic world will require companies to take a new approach to how they develop and engage their workforce. I look forward to working closely with the Teneo Performance team to help companies address these challenges.”