“I have seen a lot of good people at work, but that I never seen someone bring together people from so many diverse backgrounds, with so many different agendas, in such a fragmented sector, to have such a productive/coherent conversation. The significant advance work was critical, but it certainly never could have happened without the masterful facilitation. I also know that the Prime Minister left feeling upbeat, motivated and ready to continue the conversation.”

Hon. Stephen Owen
(then Secretary of State and Minister for
Western Diversification and Indian and Northern Affairs Canada)

“Charles is brilliant at running complex and challenging proceedings. He successfully juggled and managed input from a large number of participants, most of whom had strong opinions. Participants included Prime Minister Paul Martin, two federal Ministers, a number of federal MPs, senior provincial officials from across the west and a wide range of industry leaders. Charles demonstrated just the right balance of flexibility and firmness to keep the proceedings on track while keeping all these high-profile people engaged. Charles also excelled in working with his team to quickly translate the outcomes from the breakout sessions into summary presentations for the plenary sessions.There is no question that we would use Charles again for any such events in the future.”

Ken Armour, Director, Policy, Planning & External Relations
Western Diversification

“Over the years, I’ve participated in literally scores of corporate retreats, planning sessions, and other strategizing events, most of which have ranged from appallingly useless to mind-numbingly dull to horrifically self-serving ego pageants. That’s why I was so pleasantly surprised and amazingly impressed—no small feat for a bona fide, deep-fried, certified cynic like me—with the planning session you led for us. From your pre-event planning (the most comprehensive I’ve ever seen) to your totally professional group of session leaders and telecorders, to your on-site logistics (superbly arranging all the rooms, projectors, screens, and office supply details for each group), you delivered an outstanding and highly productive strategic planning experience, by far the best I’ve seen. Ever.”

Garrett Wasny, Project Lead
Western Economic Diversification


“Charles provided a fun and comfortable environment. His interactive style and probing questions engaged the group. He guided us to identify our challenges and helped us realize the improvements that are in our power to implement.”

Neil Matheson, Management Services Division, Ministry of Education

“Charles did an incredible job of maintaining a positive tone, while drawing out the participation of a diverse and opinionated group of leaders. His approach was ideal for an experiment like this (Meeting of Presidents and Board Chairs of all Post Secondary Education Institutions in BC).”

Murray Coell
Minister of Advanced Education

“On behalf of HEDC, thank you for providing us with the excellent facilitation in an effort towards building a more effective and efficient team. I am sure that I can speak for the entire board, we are very impressed with your ability to bring the best out of us, while keeping us on track and in check. Great job!”

Gary Wilson, Board Chair
Heiltsuk Economic Development Corporation


“Thank you so much for facilitating an excellent staff retreat for the City of Vancouver Sustainability Group. I enjoyed how you channelled the energy in the room towards constructive recommendations, how you kept everyone on track, and were flexible in response to how the conversation evolved. Your very timely feedback on the outcomes of the day meant that we could discuss it at the staff meeting two days later, build on the momentum, and actually commit to acting on several of the suggestions. I came away with a clear strategy of how to move forward.”

Heather Scholefield
City of Vancouver

“Charles Holmes has facilitated several business workshops at the Vancouver Port Authority, including most recently our 2-day Senior Leadership Corporate Retreat, which is attended by our President, VPs and Directors. Charles did an outstanding job, with participants in unanimous agreement that he was the best facilitator that we have ever had.”

Christine Diocheky
Vancouver Port Authority

“The design and content of this session was perfectly suited to our participants. You created an open, non-threatening, learning environment, which was fun and highly participative. You have a great skill in asking questions, inviting participation, guiding the discussions. We generated the kind of focus and clarity that I think will help guide this organization for years to come.”

Ingrid Alderson, Director of the OWLS group
GVRD Parks

“Working with a large, diverse group of people over a period of three years, Charles was able to ensure that the committee functioned effectively, that every member’s voice was heard, and that complex and, often controversial issues, were discussed in a respectful and open environment. With Charles’ calm and perceptive management of the group dynamics, the committee members left with a positive feeling about their involvement on the committee and with a real sense of accomplishment.”

Bernita Iversen, Corporate Planning
Corporation of Delta