Could great leadership have saved the U.S. car industry? Probably!


This American Life two parts podcast, is probably one of the best accounts, of the challenges of changing large corporations, and how devastating poor leadership and culture can be for a huge company. Go and have a listen here

From the website: A car plant in Fremont California that might have saved the U.S. car industry. In 1984, General Motors and Toyota opened NUMMI as a joint venture. Toyota showed GM the secrets of its production system: How it made cars of much higher quality and much lower cost than GM achieved. Frank Langfitt explains why GM didn't learn the lessons—until it was too late.

A World of Good Vibes!

A World of Good Vibes. One of the real joys of Christmas is the opportunity to say thank you, and wish everyone the very best for the new year!

Merry Christmas from Below the Surface

At Below the Surface we are truly grateful for all the old and new people we have met, and had the opportunity to work with in the past year.

- Peace on earth!

We are delighted to look back on a challenging and exciting year where we:

  • Helped develop a shared set of cultural values for brand agency Helikopter.
  • Helped develop new and creative ideas for engaging the Danes in coming government elections for TV2.
  • Helped develop a culture playbook, describing the culture and ways of working at Danske Bank’s innovation hub Mobile Life.
  • Trained staff in tools and methods for creative idea development and rapid prototyping at national broadcaster Danmarks Radio. 
  • Implemented new strategy at advertising agency Mediacom.
  • Helped Stendahls develop future strategy, trained their project managers in team development and taught the entire workplace methods for giving and receiving constructive feedback.
  • Gave talks on leading change and transformation at Hyper Island’s executive courses.
  • Trained process facilitators at Telefonica in Spain.
  • Designed and hosted a leadership conference for OKQ8.
  • Helped the Ministry of Integration with improve collaboration and teamwork.
  • Hosted 15 creative leaders from Manchester, when they went for an inspiration trip and visited creative agencies in Copenhagen.
  • Gave a talk for Salomon on leading change and digital transformation.
  • Served as industry leader and led an eight weeks course in digital transformation and organisational development for students at Hyper Island.
  • Helped Copenhagen City create an advisory board and formulate a charter for protecting the privacy of people in the city.
  • Gave a talk on learning organisations at Creative Mornings Gothenburg.

The 'Shut up and Listen!' talk

Thomas Reibke gave a talk at CreativeMornings in Gothenburg. The theme was sound. In his talk, Thomas focuses on its opposite – silence and its importance when building learning organizations.

In a world where talking, convincing and arguing is abundant, the need for listening, reflection and silence can not be overstated.

The slides can be downloaded from here

Filmed at The Gothenburg Concert Hall in December 2016.

If you are curious about upcoming courses in facilitation check them out here

Thomas is speaking at Creative Mornings Gothenburg

Thomas Reibke
Creative Mornings

From the Creative Mornings website:

We are really proud to present December’s speaker on the theme ”sound” – Thomas Reibke!

December's theme is ”sound”. At our upcoming event on December 15, our speaker Thomas Reibke will focus on its opposite – silence. In a world where talking, convincing and arguing is abundant, the need for listening, reflection and silence can not be overstated. 

When and Where: December 15, 8:00am - 9:00am CET. Hosted at Göteborgs Konserthus

Tickets are free but seats usually go fast. Sign ups start on Monday, December 12, 11:00 am Register here


Say hi to Erik our new intern

Erik Sjolin

Tell us a little bit about yourself
My name is Erik Sjölin. I grew up in Stockholm, Sweden. I’m a very curious and social person. I love to learn new things and build stuff.

I usually take things as they come. Once I went to Indonesia without a plan. I ended up staying a month with the first person I bumped into - the taxi driver who took me from the airport.

What’s your background?
I’m a Digital Media Creative student at Hyper Island in Stockholm. At Hyper Island we learn about how new technology impacts society, businesses and brands. We also learn about how to lead teams, that can stay competitive in an increasingly digitized world.

During my time at Hyper Island I’ve been lucky to work with some exciting client projects. Some of those were business strategy for Procter & Gamble and Volvo, VR campaigns for IKEA and helping Danske Bank develop their culture and ways of working.

Why internship at Below?
I’m passionate about exploring new and creative ways of working and organizing. I'm especially curious about how we can bring this into companies with a need for change and innovation. 

I met Thomas from Below The Surface, when he led a course called "creating digital futures" at Hyper Island. I got inspired by his way of working with organizational development, process design and facilitation.

What are you hoping to learn during your stay at Below?
I want to deepen my knowledge within the field of organizational development, and become a kick ass process facilitator.

What will you be doing?
I will run my own business within Below, find my own client and work with them. So right now I'm looking for a company who wants my help in building teams, that can stay competitive in an increasingly digitized world.

So if you have any suggestions for possible clients, let me know.

Team Facilitator Hottest Job in 2017


According to an article published in the Swedish newspaper Veckans Affärer, where they rank the hottest job titles in 2017, team facilitator was one of them. The newspaper has compiled results from the Nordic Executive Survey, where almost 1.000 managers responded to what they think will be the hottest jobs in 2017. Other hot jobs were: Organizational flexibility manager, AI coach, Private Data Detective and Drone Traffic Controller.

After 10 years of helping companies train team facilitators, we are of course excited to see this trend catch on. If you are curious about how we might help you train facilitators, take a look at our open courses here and read the full article here (the article is in Swedish).