This Is London, Dublin. Organisation Development.

Dr Richard Plenty, Managing Director of This Is

Richard is Managing Director of This Is.  He is an experienced international organisation development consultant, human resources leader and business psychologist. He works with leaders and top teams on issues associated with leadership, strategic change, organisation culture, talent management and organisation effectiveness.  His style is strategic, engaging and business focused.


His career has spanned all major sectors: public, private, state/semi state and voluntary. He has held senior management roles in Europe, North America, and Asia and has designed and delivered leading edge programmes, provided coaching and thought partnering for leaders and change agents in a variety of settings.


His experience includes 20 years coordinating and facilitating strategic change in Europe, Asia and North America with Shell International as both an Organisation Development Manager and HR Leader, including substantial periods based outside the UK. His roles included Manager Organisation Development Practice Shell International based in London; Resourcing and Development Manager in Shell Expro based in Aberdeen; Employee Relations and Quality Planning Manager in Shell Chemicals UK based in Chester; HR Coordinator in Shell Canada based in Calgary; and Head of Organisation Effectiveness in Brunei Shell based in Seria.


During his Shell career he worked across all business sectors with clients up to and including the very top level of the organisation. He was a key player in international projects such as the development of a global chemicals business (involving the 'merger' of many previously independent national organisations in North America, Europe and Asia), the introduction of common global staff resourcong systems and the pioneering Shell People Survey.


Earlier in his career Richard worked for WS Atkins as a named Human Factors consultant for the UK nuclear industry advising on how to minimise the possibility of human error and as a psychologist in the British Steel industry working on job design, working conditions and work organisation.


Richard's more recent work has included providing coaching and mentoring support to business leaders and fellow professionals, as well as leading and working on consultancy assignments in a variety of sectors including:


  • Airports:  long term integrated and strategic change programme (from 2005 - 2012)  to transform the effectiveness of DAA, working with the top team ; support for Air Council International (ACI) on matters relating to leadership, change and strategic HR across the sector as a speaker, coach, consul;tant, trainer and event organiser
  • Oil & Gas: design of the organisation and subsequent transition plan for a $35b oil and gas project based in Perth Australia, partnering with DC Energy for INPEX.
  • Healthcare: worked with the Chief Executive and top team of the Kingston NHS Provider Services to help them make the transition to an independent social enterprise Your HealthCare and more recently on strategic change for the  Chief Executive of an NHS Commussioning Support Unit
  • FMCG: working with the top production team in IDL, based in Ireland, to build a high performance team culture for the makers of the iconic Jameson brand.
  • Financial Services: advising on organisation structure issues with a major rating agency
  • Local Government; orchestrating the successfull rollout of performance management to 30,000 staff in Ireland through design and deployment of a "train the trainer" programme and national conference.
  • Multinational Blue Chip: design of process for rolling out Unilever global leadership framework across the world, including training trainers and monitoring results.
  • Third Sector: Support  for Aoibhneas Women's and Childrens Refuge in Ireland on matters of strategic change, business transformation and further improving both efficiency and quality of care   

Richard has particular skills in:


  • Shaping high performance cultures - attitudes,behaviours,engagement
  • Acting as a coach and 'thought partner' to senior leaders
  • Building sustainable high performing senior teams
  • Clarifying business vision,values and their implications
  • Design and implementation of organisation-wide change strategies and plans
  • Designing and implementing talent management systems
  • Designing and running leadership development programmes
  • Organisational surveys, team diagnostics, psychometrics
  • Developing organisational 'networks' to sustain change
  • Designing and facilitating workshops, meetings and events
  • Delivering impactful talks, including keynote addrtesses, at conferences and events

Richard is increasingly in demand as a speaker at international conferences. He has written a number of articles on airports and in 2014 will be writing a regular column for Airport World on organisation, people and leadership.


Richard holds postgraduate qualifications (MSc and a PhD) in psychology and human factors (ergonomics) and is a Chartered Psychologist (current practicing certificate, level A and B trained), an Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society, a Principal Member of the Association for Business Psychology and a Fellow of the Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors. He also holds a first class honours degree in Physics from London University.


He has an Advanced Postgraduate Diploma in Business and Executive Coaching from the Smurfit Graduate Business School, University College Dublin for which he was awarded first class honours.


He served on the Board of the Association of Business Psychologists for over 5 years until the end of 2012, and is currently a Director of Aoibhneas Women's and Childrens Refuge in Ireland where he is overseeing a period of major change and transition.