6-month programme – applications open NOW.

Are you ready to step up to partner in 2019, 2020 or 2021?

Next Programme starts in March 2018

Only 10 places available


The programme, which starts again in March 2018, is designed for ambitious accountants, lawyers or consultants in practice who want to make partner in 2019, 2020 or 2021.

The participants on previous programmes came from all of The Big Four, Taylor Wessings, Mazars, Accenture…

Thank you very much indeed for your significant help and support – as a result of your guidance I felt incredibly confident in submitting my business plan and then giving my presentation and interview. In the days after the presentation and interview I had some very positive feedback from the partners who interviewed me, saying that my performance was “outstanding” and that my presentation was “very slick and professional” – I doubt it would have been without your advice and guidance. I gained so much confidence from working with you and I am extremely grateful.

Partner, BLM LLP


Our highly respected Poised for Partnership Programme, which starts again in March 2018, will be your secret weapon to successfully navigate the murky waters ahead of you, as you take the final step up to partner. With many firms cutting back on their learning and development programmes (and that’s if they had them in the first place), it really is up to you to invest in yourself, in your career and make your development happen.

This Programme will give you the structure, clarity and focus to successfully make it to partner. Of course, no-one can guarantee that you will make partner in a certain timescale, but this programme will put you back in control of your career. It will give you the confidence that you are doing all the right things to make partner at the right time for you.

This manageable 6-month programme really is a way to fast-track yourself to partner. It is based upon the methodology contained in Heather Townsend’s award-winning and best-selling books, ‘Poised for partnership’, ‘How to make partner and still have a life’, ‘The Go-To Expert’ and ‘The FT Guide To Business Networking’.

Anyone who applies for the March 2018 programme will receive a complimentary soft copy of Heather’s ‘Poised for partnership’ book. (Worth £10)


  1. Answer the burning and often unanswered question, “What do I need to do to progress my career to partner around here?”
  2. Show you how to create a cast-iron Business Case and Personal Case for partnership, even if your firm doesn’t have a formally communicated Partnership Admissions Process.
  3. Support you to pace yourself so you don’t get burnt out before you have a shot at partner.
  4. Help you to get noticed by the partners in your firm as a potential future partner.
  5. Give you tried and tested strategies to shine and make it successfully through your partnership assessment process
  6. Give you a competitive advantage by successfully preparing you for your partnership panel interviews and any partner assessment centre you will need to do
  7. Clearly show you what skills, attitudes, behaviours and experience you will need to demonstrate to rapidly progress to partner.
  8. Provide the structure and focus to ensure you can progress your career, rather than having no time for anything else than the day job.
  9. Allow you to have peace of mind and clarity about what you need to do NOW and in the future to make it successfully to partner in 2019, 2020 or 2021.
  10. Give you the skills to build a strong team beneath you, to whom you can confidently and reliably delegate work.

John recently coached me on my successful run to Partnership. I can honestly say I have never worked with anyone who has John’s skills and background and applies them so effectively.

John was everything and more I wanted from a coach. He was always approached and available, and responsive given time zone differences.

He was supportive yet challenging and always thought provoking and had the ability to make me focus on what I needed to do/achieve.

I would have no hesitation in recommending John to anyone.

Henry Lacey

Partner, EY (Hong Kong)



Do a quick search of the web and you will find loads of coaches who will promise you the earth as well as the ‘success you deserve’.

Why choose this one?

It is a completely unique coaching programme. There is nothing like it anywhere in the world. This means you will be learning from the world’s expert on what it truly takes to make partner.

The key difference is that this programme has been solely designed to help you get ready to take the step up to partner. Unlike other non-specialist programmes, you won’t waste your time on unnecessary stuff.The programme materials are based on our experiences of helping hundreds of accountants, lawyers and consultants successfully make partner.

With many firms cutting back on their learning and development budgets, there are now NO guarantees that your firm will actually invest in you and your career. So many of our clients have learnt that they only way they are going to get to partner is to take matters into their own hands and privately invest in their own development. Guess what? These people have then gone on to become VERY successful.

With many of the Big 4 firms drastically reducing the number of partners they make up in 2018, it is becoming much harder to make partner in a Big 4 firm. From the success of our coaching clients we know if you come on this programme and work through it you will stand out from your peers for all the right reasons at your partnership panels. We know our coaching clients have a competitive advantage at their partnership panels. Can you afford not to get the support and inside track to boost your career to the next stage?

As a senior fee earner, you are being pulled in so many directions. There are your own billable targets, the constant demands from clients and partners, timesheets to be filled in, expenses to be reclaimed, family stuff…. And then you’ve got to make time to progress your career to partner.

Is it any wonder that so many people fail to make it to partner? The good intentions we all have to spend some time working on our own career is all so often overtaken by a daily influx of work that needs our more urgent attention. And then you find that six months have gone by and you’ve not done anything meaningful to help you take the step up to partner. Be honest with yourself, you know you could probably do this stuff by yourself, but have you made any serious progress yet? Will this change if you don’t do anything different?

This is why we designed the programme; to make it flexible around your needs but to give you the accountability to actually put in the effort. Which is why on the programme…

  • You have four hours of coaching with your nominated coach to keep you on track.
  • You can email your nominated coach with queries at any time of day or night.
  • You will get 6 months of weekly accountability emails from your nominated coach to keep you focused on working on your career rather than getting sucked into the day job.
  • You choose how quickly or slowly you want to go through the programme – even press pause if you get pulled into an all-encompassing deal, client instruction or client matter.
  • You have access to self-study materials to tailor the programme to your need.
  • You can listen to our four live virtual webinar masterclasses and keep the recordings to listen to whenever you need.



  • 4 hours of 1:2:1 coaching for you to use as you see fit. value = £1000
  • A comprehensive review of your business case, with tailored recommendations to improve and, where needed, (up to 2 hours) help to write your business case, value = £750
  • A comprehensive review of your LinkedIn profile and online footprint with tailored recommendations to improve, value = £500
  • 6 months of weekly email accountability coaching and ad hoc email support from your nominated coach, value £500
  • A copy of ‘Poised for partnership’ value = £20
  • 4 x 60-90 min live virtual masterclasses (these will be recorded and transcribed for people who can’t make the masterclass) on the following topics, value = £500
    • Creating the space, energy, desire and time to take the step up to partner
    • How to create a cast-iron business case for partner
    • How to ace your partnership panel interviews and partner assessment centre
    • How to get your partners to talk about you as the next partner


Creating the space, energy, desire and time to take the step up to partner

Date: Tuesday 6th March 2018              Length: 60-90 mins

Start Time: 6pm London, 7pm Paris, 1pm New York, 10am San Francisco,

Content to be covered:

  • What needs to go into your partner track plan so you feel under control with the day job AND the demands of being on partner track
  • Tips and tricks to make being on partner track that little bit easier, e.g. how to use your support team to make your life easier
  • How to keep your mind & body healthy at the most stressful point in your career
  • How to find the time to do all the extra demands on your time
How to create a cast-iron business case for partnership

Date: Tuesday 17th April 2018                Length: 60-90 mins

Start Time: 6pm London, 7pm Paris, 1pm New York, 10am San Francisco

Content to be covered:

  • The typical contents of your business case
  • The one-sentence and three-sentence sell and how this helps you successfully pitch your business case informally and formally at your partnership panel sessions
  • Step-by-step instructions on how to create your business plan
  • Tips for writing and pitching your business case based on our experience of helping 100s of successful candidates get through the partner track process at their Big 4, large law firm or mid-tier firm
  • Common mistakes made by people with their business case and how to avoid making them
How to get your partners to talk about you as the next partner

Date: Tuesday 8th May 2018                      Length: 60-90 mins

Start Time: 6pm London, 7pm Paris, 1pm New York, 10am San Francisco

Content to be covered:

  • How to get your partners to put you in the pipeline for partnership without coming across as arrogant or over-confident
  • How to use sponsors and mentors to further your career without you having to lift a finger
  • What gets you noticed positively by the right people?
  • How to create the right mindset to get put into the partner track process AND get through it successfully
  • What are career limiting behaviours, and how you can avoid falling into these behaviours
How to ace your partnership panel interviews

Date: Tuesday 5th June 2018              Length: 60-90 mins

Start Time: 6pm London, 7pm Paris, 1pm New York, 10am San Francisco

Content to be covered:

  • How to condense your business case down into a memorable and persuasive 10-15 min presentation in your partnership panel interview
  • What questions to expect in your partnership panel interviews and how to prepare for them
  • Likely elements of a partnership assessment centre and how best to prepare for them
  • How to give the best presentation of your life in your partnership panel interview, including how to make your nerves work for you rather than against you
  • How to use the one-sentence and three-sentence sell to succinctly articulate the ‘why me’ in your partnership panel interviews

I would recommend the Poised for partnership programme for anyone from a large or international accountancy, consultancy or law firm who is 0-24 months off making partner. I felt supported at each stage of my partner track process. From the critique of my business case and help to rework it, through to the 1:2:1 support to get my presentation designed and ready for my multiple partnership panel interviews. I found the personalised advice on how to cope with nerves and overwhelm invaluable.The virtual masterclasses were really good. When you put the stuff you learnt on the masterclasses together with the coaching it made it all very real.

It wasn’t just the big things, it was the little things which made the programme really valuable for me. My coach kept me sane through the process and helped me prioritise the many demands on my time.

I felt really supported as I was able to email my coach throughout the process with questions. Of course you often know what to do, but it is so helpful to get a calming influence telling you what to do and that you are on the right track.

As a result of the programme the feedback I got from my firm at each stage of the process was that I was an outstanding candidate. I was one of only two people globally in my firm who was made up to partner.

Participant on 1st Poised for Partnership Programme

Partner, Mazars



If I don't find the programme valuable will I be able to get a refund?

Our aim is to make sure that ALL of our clients are happy. If after talking with us we can’t rectify what is wrong with the programme for you, we will agree a no-quibble refund for you.

When will I be invoiced for the programme?

Only after you have had your complimentary call with your nominated coach and confirmed you want to join, will you be invoiced for the programme. After you have paid for the programme OR your first instalment you will be sent access details to the resources and masterclasses.

Who will be my coach on the programme?

For the March 2018 intake, we anticipate the most people on the programme will be coached by a member of our coaching team – Heather Townsend, Michele White, Liz Rider, Rebecca Ford Johnson, and John Moss. We reserve the right to use alternative coaches in case of a conflict of interest.

Why do I need to apply to be on the programme?

We need to make sure that we are a good fit for you and that you are a good fit for this programme. We don’t want to take your money and not deliver on our promises. If you would like our help and support but don’t feel you are a good fit for this programme, please get in touch and we will work out how best we can support you as you progress through your career.

What happens after I apply to be on the programme?

After you apply to be on the programme, you will receive an email from us confirming we have your application. This email will include a link for you to book your 30 min complimentary call before the programme starts. This 30 min call will be your opportunity to check that the programme is right for you and will deliver exactly what you need. When you have booked your 30 min complimentary call you will be sent a complimentary electronic version of ‘Poised for Partnership’.  Assuming you still want to go ahead with the programme, you will be invoiced for the programme after your complimentary call. Your invoice or first instalment will need to be paid by 7th February 2018 (Earlybird discount) or by 31st February 2018 (all other payments).

When do the virtual live masterclasses take place?

These dynamic and interactive webinars will take place:


  • Tuesday 6 March 2018 6pm BST –  Creating the space, energy, desire and time to take the step up to partner
  • Tuesday 17 April 2018 6pm, GMT – How to create a cast-iron business case for partnership
  • Tuesday 8 May 2018 6pm GMT – How to get your partners to talk about you as the next partner
  • Tuesday 5 June 6pm GMT- How to ace your partnership panel interviews and partner assessment centre

The webinars are recorded so you can listen again as often as you like and can catch up in your own time if you can’t attend.

6pm BST/GMT is 19:00 Central European Time, 13:00 Eastern US time, 10:00 Pacific US time. (please check for any daylight time changes)

Will there be recordings of the live virtual masterclasses available?

Each of the four virtual live masterclasses will be recorded and transcribed. The audio recording will be available within 24 hours of the virtual live masterclasses. The audio transcription will be available within 1-2 weeks of the masterclass taking place.

I am from a firm. Could we discuss the programme for one or more of my staff?

We would be delighted to have a chat with you to see if this programme is right for members of your team. Please email lisa@excedia.co.uk to set up a phonecall.

What happens with the weekly email accountability?

Every week (for the 6 weeks you are on the programme) you will be invited to update your coach on your progress.

Specifically you will be sent a form and asked the following questions:

  1. What have you achieved in the last week? Or what you are grateful, happy or proud about?
  2. What do you want to achieve in the next week? Client related or career related?
  3. What help do you need?

If your coach can quickly help you by email you will get some help emailed. If it is something which is more complex than a simple email your coach will invite you to use one of your 4 hours of coaching and book a coaching call with them to work through the help you require.

How many people will be on the programme?

The programme is only open to 10 people to make sure that we can give all participants on the programme high quality and individual attention.

Will you open up this programme again if the time is not right for me now?

We plan to run this programme just twice a year. The next programme will start in September 2018, followed by a new intake in March 2019. If you would like to join the September 2018 programme, please do get in touch so we can reserve your place.

If my firm provides me with a coach, why do I need this programme?

Firstly, if your firm has promised you a coach AND actually made good on its promise, well done. We have found that many lawyers, accountants and consultants are still waiting for their HR or L&D team to provide the coach or extra training that has been promised. Many of the people on our first programme had an internal coach but used this programme to work on their own agenda rather than that of their firm.If you are having coaching paid for by your firm, will your coach:

  • Help you to write and structure your business case
  • Guide and mentor you through the partnership admissions process?
If I attend the programme will you guarantee that I will make partner within 2 years?

Whilst we would love to be able to offer this guarantee, there are too many forces and factors outside of our control. For example:

  • Your firm could put a freeze on new partner admission for several years – this happened to Wilkins Kennedy and many other firms during the last recession
  • Your firm could merge, which may block your path to partnership
  • You may decide through the coaching process that making partner in the next 2 years is not right for you at this particular time

What we can say, based on our experience of helping people take the step up to partner, is that the people who take action, and commit to making partner by spending their own money on coaching are the people we see making partner. Often a lot sooner than anticipated.


Michele White

Expertise in:

  • Big 4 Firms
  • Personal Case
  • Preparation for Assessment/Development Centres and Partnership Panel Interviews
  • Confidence, motivation and mindset shifts

Heather Townsend

Expertise in:

  • Accountancy, Legal and Consultancy
  • Business and personal case
  • Business development
  • Big 4 and mid-tier firms

Liz Rider

Expertise in:

  • Big 4 Firms
  • Personal Case
  • Preparation for Assessment/Development Centres and Partnership Panel Interviews
  • Confidence, motivation and mindset shifts

John Moss

Expertise in:

  • Accountancy, Legal and Consultancy
  • Business and personal case
  • Business development
  • Big 4 and mid-tier firms

Rebecca Ford Johnson

Expertise in:

  • Legal
  • Business and personal case
  • Magic Circle and Mid-Tier Law Firms
  • Women in Leadership