Client Comments Regarding Donald Levitt, Ph.D.

GLOBAL COMPANIES

“As a young company committed to improving our leadership culture, TerraPower called upon Donald Levitt to help us create a common framework, language, and skill set for our leaders, managers and teams. Our technical, regulatory and business challenges at TerraPower are too great -- and our goals are too important -- to manage our business and our talent without a common set of tools. In this way we will continue to foster our culture of innovation and collaboration. Over the past two years Dr. Levitt has provided consultation, training, and coaching which have resulted in a firm foundation of skills, tools and values which we believe will be sustained into the future. Dr. Levitt also helped to design our strategic planning process that has included our Executive Leadership Team as well as our managers. This has clarified our key goals and overarching strategies. With Dr. Levitt’s assistance, our organization is now better prepared to achieve its goals."

Chris Levesque, President, TerraPower

(TerraPower is a nuclear energy technology company based in Bellevue, Washington. At its core, TerraPower is working to raise living standards globally through sustainable energy. In 2006, Bill Gates and a group of like-minded visionaries decided that the private sector needed to take action. They believed that business interests could develop a scalable, sustainable, low-carbon and cost-competitive energy source that would allow all nations to quicken their pace of economic development and reduce poverty. TerraPower is working to provide the world with a more affordable, secure and environmentally friendly form of nuclear energy.)

 

“It has been my pleasure to work with Don Levitt as an executive coach. He has helped a number of our executives to improve their leadership styles and enhance their personal effectiveness. I would work again with Don any day -- especially in the area of improving interpersonal effectiveness, wherein I believe he has particular insight and expertise.”
Rochelle Hanley, M.D.
Executive Director, Metabolic Clinical Development
Pfizer
“Working with Don Levitt as an executive coach over the past year has been illuminating, both professionally and personally. Don’s thoughtful, probing style allows you to uncover deep insights into your personal style and others’ perceptions of you, and to develop productive and efficient strategies to emphasize your strengths as well as address your developmental needs.”
John McCue
Principal
Deloitte Consulting, LLP
“It has been my pleasure working with Don Levitt on an enterprise-wide talent management initiative. His expertise in executive coaching, organizational development and change management has been instrumental in retaining and developing key talent. I look forward to working with Don well into the future.”
Joe Rose
Manager of Succession Planning and Performance Management
Sprint Corporation
“Don was engaged to help us, as a corporation and as individuals, to improve our performance based on using better leadership techniques. He not only provided us with excellent communication and behavior tools, but with his psychology training he provided superb individual “counseling” with regard to interpersonal interaction. This was extremely beneficial for the implementation of performance-based leadership, and also helpful in other real-world situations. Don is truly an excellent, and very importantly, a direct and honest, communicator. I have noticed definite results from Don's training.”
Daniel Chao
Executive Vice President
Bechtel Enterprises
“Don Levitt is a valuable resource to our executive management team, facilitating discussion and definition of corporate strategy, succession planning, and providing insightful feedback and coaching to our executives about their individual management and leadership styles. With Don’s considerable experience and gentle advice, I believe we have improved our effectiveness both as individuals and as a management team.”
Tony D. Damon
Chief Executive Officer
SSOE, Inc.

“Donald Levitt provided the 80 employees of our Support Service Organization with 36 hours of in-person training – spread over four months – on the topics of Customer Service, Critical Thinking, and Problem Solving.  All of these workshops were highly interactive.  Our employees fully engaged in the training activities and demonstrated their learning by presenting sample projects to a visiting senior executive at the completion of each workshop.  We view this training as an investment in our employees – as part of our journey “from good to great.”  The content which Dr. Levitt provided, and his ability to make the workshops fun and engaging, resulted in an outstanding learning experience for our employees.  I am confident that the tools which we learned will be put into action, and that they will result in a more efficient, effective and customer-focused Support Service Organization." 

Steve Ellis
Sr. Director, Support Service Organization
Dana Holding Corporation
“What a great experience it has been working with Don Levitt throughout a recent engagement! Don’s personal and professional approach was on display as he helped members of my management team build awareness of emotional intelligence and construct individualized plans that focused on relative strengths while targeting areas for improvement. The results are noticeable, demonstrated by each manager through enhanced communication skills, increased confidence and better awareness of emotional intelligence in general. I would not hesitate to recommend Don for future coaching engagements.”
Mike Prucnal
  Director - Information Technology
First Solar Inc.
“Don was an effective consultant to my leadership team in helping us to clarify our vision and implement a plan for a major change project. His leadership in engaging employees at all levels in the transformation was also a key factor in our success.”
Glen Hiner
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (retired)
Owens Corning

FAMILY-OWNED AND CLOSELY-HELD COMPANIES

“Donald Levitt consulted with us both as an Executive Coach and as a Family Consultant advising the family as we planned the transition to second generation stewardship. As an Executive Coach Don was incredibly helpful as he identified areas of weakness and then “coached” the executives toward improvement in those areas. His insight and guidance were delivered in a systematic and professional manner that was well received. As a Family Consultant Don worked with our entire family to understand and then implement the necessary structure and processes that allow families to be successful both as families and business owners. In the end we are more educated about family business, we’re more focused as a family unit, and the systems have been put into place that will allow us to remain that way.”
Steve Wurth
President
Wurtec, Inc.
“Our work with Don Levitt has resulted in a stronger family and business team. He helped our Executive Team and Board of Directors to gain a better understanding of our executives’ strengths and how each one can best contribute to the success of the business. Don has helped our entire management team function more effectively, particularly through the implementation of strategic and tactical meetings. Don has also facilitated a family meeting which included owners, spouses and teenage children that provided us all with a better understanding of the past, present and future of our third generation family business.”
Ed Brooks
President
Huron Automatic Screw Co.
“Don helped me to ask the right questions – and the solutions became apparent. Don has helped guide me through some difficult choices.”

Tom Schmidt
President
Ed Schmidt Automotive Group
"Don Levitt has been an invaluable resource in helping us to identify systemic issues in our organization. He is an outstanding listener and brings real wisdom, insight and solution-focused actions that helped all the stakeholders in our organization embrace the hope that positive change can be brought to the group."
Steve Piller
VP of Advertising & Local Stations
Buckeye CableSystem
“Don Levitt has helped us in our drive to become the tightest ship in the tire and oil shipping business. His tools for improving employee accountability and communications and for working more efficiently have been particularly valuable.”
Joe Shrader
President
Shrader Tire and Oil
“Planning to leave ‘our’ company seemed like climbing Mt. Everest. Don Levitt is helping us prepare, plan and implement this process to everyone’s satisfaction.”
Malcolm and Peggy Richards
Supplemental Staffing
“Management behavior and results are tied together in today’s workplace. Don Levitt helped our management personnel to develop real-world skills that they can apply immediately to real work issues. Don’s style is results-oriented and provides powerful tools for today’s changing environment."”
Duane Jebbett
President
Rowmark
“Don Levitt has been a very insightful resource and an effective coach for our team members over the last year, as our organization continues to work through a very significant cultural change. Don has quickly gained our trust and respect and maintained it, while offering ideas and solutions that fit our rapidly growing (entrepreneurial) company."
Brenda Simmons
General Manager & Controller
Clarke Power Products
“Don Levitt has been instrumental in helping us to identify and create plans to remedy critical problems within the organization. His input will help both the board and the executive management team become more effective and professional. And throughout the process his feedback has been balanced and considerate.”
Bob Everett
Chairman
Hilgraeve, Inc.
“We have been doing strategic planning for ten years and needed to find a new facilitator. Don came highly recommended. We were impressed with his process for strategic planning, and pleased with the results. We will continue to use his services.”
Don Mennel
President
Mennel Milling Company
“This year we changed facilitators for strategic planning and began using Don Levitt. Don brought a breath of fresh air to our process. His insights and coaching skills have helped us to move to a higher level.”
Peter Diehl
President
Diehl, Inc.

NOT-FOR-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS

“Over the last couple years Don Levitt has helped the Detroit Athletic Club (DAC) during an important milestone in our history. During this time, Don successfully facilitated two strategic planning retreats and served as a trusted executive coach.

The strategic retreats gleaned valuable future thought from both the DAC Board and the DAC Employee Team. The Board of Directors was a high level exercise that had to keep the attention of busy executives while making productive use of their time. Don was very effective in achieving both goals while making it enjoyable as well. Engaging staff in our first strategic retreat required another approach. It was an offsite exercise with 47 employees across the ranks. Don helped us to fully engage the team to think strategically and creatively. Each retreat concluded after a day and a half of work and produced complementary strategies that are now integrated into a long term strategic plan.

As an executive coach Don has a way of getting to the heart of a matter by listening intently. He follows up with a series of thoughtful questions that effectively peel apart an issue for clarity and solutions. His observations are always frank and spot-on. Our association with Don has been a very rewarding experience.”

J.G. Ted Gillary
Executive Manager
Detroit Athletic Club
"Don's executive coaching has not only helped me to be a more effective manager and leader in my field, it has also helped me to understand and develop a strategy for balancing life's multiple roles and challenges. Thanks to Don, I am now able to be proactive in the most important areas of my business and my life."
David Egner
President and Chief Executive Officer
Hudson-Webber Foundation
“Don is an outstanding facilitator. His knowledge, skills and assistance were instrumental in the University’s strategic planning efforts. Don’s personal executive coaching was invaluable to me as I led transformational change initiatives.”
Bill Decatur
Vice President of Finance and Administration
University of Toledo
“I found Don Levitt to be helpful as an executive coach. He gave practical advice and encouragement. He pushed me in areas that I didn’t necessarily want to be pushed – in a nice way. I also found that he had valuable insights which helped me to think about things differently. He was very good at praising me and others. I believe it was very helpful for me to have Don’s coaching.”
Director
University of Michigan

PUBLIC SPEAKING

“An outstanding presenter who exceeds all expectations! Don Levitt delivers excellent content loaded with nuggets of good advice enhanced with pithy real life stories told in a clear and well organized fashion. Don Levitt adds value to any seminar.”
Shel Stark
Specialty Programs Director
Institute of Continuing Legal Education (The State Bar of Michigan)
“Don Levitt’s presentation on the sources and patterns of conflict in family business – and how these conflicts can be prevented or resolved – was very well-received by our members, most of whom work regularly with family-owned businesses. His passion for the subject, and his personal stories of helping these families, made for a compelling talk. His presentation was one of the highlights of our speaker series.”
Dennis M. Mitzel
President
Washtenaw County Estate Planning Council
“I had the pleasure of attending Dr. Donald Levitt's presentation on Strategies for Preserving Family Wealth. I recommend his services to all of my clients, friends and family who are involved in family offices where significant wealth will be passed to successive generations. Dr. Levitt's program invites families to delve deeper than the issues involved in typical business-estate planning and encourages the family participants to consider their values and communication styles in making decisions for the future. In the end, family members emerge with a unified plan (a family constitution) which includes provisions for handling not only issues related to business-estate planning, but also contains provisions regarding family values toward philanthropy. This program is a must for families of wealth--especially where multi-generational family members hold diverse opinions and philosophies while managing a family office.”
Gene LoVasco
Board Chair
St. John Health Foundation
“We were pleased to co-sponsor Dr. Levitt’s presentation on ‘Preparing for Your Third Third of Life.’ The attendees were business owners who are preparing for life after they leave their business. Dr. Levitt helped the executives to understand the differences between pleasure, engagement and meaning, and guided them in understanding how their strengths can be the foundation for a rich and rewarding life in retirement. Dr. Levitt’s enthusiasm, clarity, and participant exercises made for an outstanding presentation. Everyone clearly enjoyed the workshop and found it to be of value. I would confidently recommend Dr. Levitt as a speaker for business executives.”
Kerrigan M. Quicker
Vice President, Commercial Banking
FirstMerit Bank