Our Role

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Triangle Associates approaches consulting as a partnership in which we and our client are committed to learning through honest diagnosis, joint planning, candid feedback and appropriate evaluation. By working as a mirror, a sounding board, a facilitator or a strategist, Triangle Associates takes on a role that meets the needs of the client and the task. Rarely do we assume just one of these roles: each situation requires flexibility and an intuitive sense of the appropriate combination. 

  • As a mirror, Triangle Associates helps an organization confront difficult issues that its members are reluctant to face. Through confidential interviews, inventories, surveys and focus groups, we assess the degree to which an organization’s members or employees share organizational values and the degree to which the culture and behaviors in the organization support, contradict or alter its mission and goals. Consciously assuming the role of mirror helps us to separate our own feelings and perceptions from those of the client and enables us to use them when appropriate and timely.

  • As a sounding board, Triangle Associates listens and empathizes. Leaders often cannot discuss sensitive issues with their peers and staff, nor do they always feel comfortable presenting new ideas. Through this listening and coaching role, we help a leader assess and improve strategies that will lead to a more effective organization. Acting as a sounding board also helps defuse conflict situations and reduce stress. Supporting and nurturing others and keeping a sense of humor are particularly important in times of conflict and change.
  • As a facilitator, Triangle Associates begins a client relationship with few preconceived ideas. We recognize that every organization is different and that what worked before may not work again. Our focus in this role is to help the client organization learn to solve its own problems more effectively. Sometimes this takes the form of teaching through seminars and workshops that may use problem-based discussions or interactive case studies; at other times, we facilitate participants’ learning through experiential approaches, including simulation and role-playing exercises.
  • Finally, as a strategist. Triangle Associates helps the client focus on key relationships, the cause-effect and "if-then" linkages that underlie a group’s understanding and acceptance of present conditions and future change. We work with leaders to tap the energy of the organization to clarify values and goals and to develop models and action plans that will give birth to the future organization.

Strategist, facilitator, sounding board, mirror – whatever role Triangle Associates plays – our concern for the client’s needs and our value for problem-solving through collaboration and critical thinking ensure that a range of opinions and ideas balance and enrich final outcomes. Our ultimate goal is to cultivate mutual trust and respect and to develop long and satisfying relationships with each and every client.

Triangle Associates. . .

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Our Services: Organizational Development
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Great Moments in Consulting History


In 1893, Mildred Otis, one of America’s first woman consultants, radically modernized organizational efficiency with the suggestion to replace stairs in modern office buildings with teams of employees pulling coworkers up and down open shafts in boxes. Her name for the new machinery-quality boxes never did catch on, but her recommendation for equality for women and minorities did.

Triangle Associates of Chapel Hill, Inc.