Tim Shea is a charismatic facilitator, speaker, and coach.
He has extensive experience helping leaders increase their ability to persuade, communicate, and generate productive change. His goal is transformation.
Tim is committed to helping organizations develop and engage their people. He believes that when professionals access and embrace their potential, great things can happen for them, their organizations, and the world around them. Tim delights in driving improvement and change.
Tim has worked for such groups as PricewaterhouseCoopers, GE, Honeywell, Boeing, American Express, MasterCard, FEMA, Language Testing, Merck, AIG and many others.
Tim spent many years in his early career as a professional actor and singer. He worked on stage, in commercials and studied the craft extensively in New York and Los Angeles. eventually earning a master of fine arts degree from Rutgers University.
In the mid-nineties, Tim moved over to the corporate world and began a career in sales. While selling a suite of IT and web hosting solutions to financial market companies Tim broke a two-year sales record for the largest single sale and became the go-to guy for new-hire training and account rescue.
Over time, he grew into a new role selling complex software to large international companies and delivering initial product training.
Eventually, he began working for AT&T selling internet, security, and networking solutions to Fortune 1000 companies. In his first year, he sold 200% of quota.
In his next role, Tim served as the director of sales for an employee retention firm. While with that organization, his responsibilities expanded to include additional areas of business development: refining target markets, enhancing articulation of services, and transforming the sales process through training and coaching.
At the same time he was doing that work, Tim became interested in how organizations could access more of the untapped potential that existed in their people. Reading Eckhart Tolle’s book, The Power of Now, started a journey of discovery for him.
Those interests combined with his experience in service, sales, and communication led him to a full-time focus on training and talent development and he began supporting a range of national training firms.
While he initially facilitated sales training programs, Tim’s work quickly expanded to include service experience design, messaging, negotiation, conflict resolution, and presentation skills.
Tim began working with Business Training Works in 2016.
Tim holds a BFA in acting from Emerson College and an MFA in acting from Rutgers University.
An Interview with Tim
What three or four words describe your facilitation style?
Inquisitive, engaging, and learner centered.
How do you tailor your approach to meet the needs of a client?
Preparation is the one thing I can control. It’s hugely important to me. To get the best result I can get for an organization, I need to get a sense of what people are looking for in terms of outcomes. That’s first. Second, I want people to enjoy the work we do and delight in discovery. My job is to create an environment that will allow that to happen. I do that by preparing examples, using stories, and selecting relevant information.
How has your acting experience influenced your corporate work?
The common thread with acting and facilitation or training is connecting with people on a deeper level – whether that’s gravitas or levitas. There’s also a performance aspect of this business. My stage work certainly helped with that.
How has your sales experience influenced your corporate work?
I think it’s made me good at relationships, being persistent, and staying organized. I really understand how many salespeople are hungry to be successful. When I can give them tools to do that, it’s particularly gratifying.
Why do you think you were so successful in sales? What’s your secret?
There are lots of elements that need to work together for someone to be successful in sales, but if I had to pick one, I’d say listening. I see listening as a big part of the equation. At the beginning of the process, I challenge salespeople to see themselves as business journalists, not salespeople. The initial job is to notice and learn, not to offer solutions. That part comes later. A lot of people who could be really good are average because they don’t take the time to fully understand the customer needs
You do a lot of work with customer service and helping people improve the customer experience. What makes someone good at service?
Service comes down to the emotional experiences people have with a company. Service providers who have been well trained are very different. They listen, they’re curious, and they understand what’s going on emotionally. They know how to handle the craziness that can happen. Being great at that kind of work doesn’t happen by accident. It’s a choice to adopt a specific set of behaviors.
What are your favorite topics to facilitate?
In all of my workshops, I focus on transformation. I help people identify the professional capacity they have for a given skill set and then we figure out how to get better.
Do you follow a minute-by-minute agenda, or do you tend to be flexible?
I don’t like minute-by-minute, but I do like to stick to guidelines. My philosophy is “plan well, and stay loose.”
What gets you excited about this work?
Giving people access to something about themselves that was either hidden or underappreciated and helping people be themselves at a higher level of possibilities. It could be sales, management, leadership, customer service or something else. That’s an amazing experience for them and for me.
How do you stay current with what’s happening in talent development?
I am constantly learning. I’m excited about economics, organizational development, social systems, human systems, neuroscience, and psychology. They all fit together in some fashion.
What would you do professionally if you weren’t in learning and development?
I would be constantly teaching and learning and looking for ways to provoke possibilities.
When you’re not working, what are your interests?
That’s an interesting question. Building and fixing things – whether that’s in the garden, doing woodwork, or something else.