Neolé: Where real engagement begins

Neolé elevates performance by strengthening leaders and empowering diverse teams to excel in the modern work environment. Our dynamic facilitation, play-based strategies, wellness expertise, and inclusive, bottom-up approach cultivate a healthy workplace culture, driving and sustaining engagement, retention, and high performance all year round.

At Neolé, we recognize the immense load you carry as a leader—managing team performance, cultivating a thriving workplace culture, and balancing personal commitments, often at the expense of your own health and wellness. It’s a tall order, and that’s where we come in! Our services, from leadership coaching and team development workshops to strategic team retreats, are tailor-made for leaders like you who are striving for excellence in every aspect of life.

Our adaptable team delivers these programs virtually, in-person, or in a hybrid format to meet your unique needs, ensuring seamless integration for diverse teams, whether co-located or dispersed across time zones. With over 12 years of global success, our expert facilitators are equipped to engage groups of 7 to 700, in English, French, and Spanish, reinforcing our commitment to inclusivity and diversity.

As an internationally certified Women-Owned Business and Vendor of Record for the Canadian Federal Government, Neolé specializes in:

Our signature UPWELL programs offer comprehensive support for leaders and teams seeking sustained performance and well-being, underlining our mission to create workplaces where health and success go hand in hand.

Discover more about our services and download our PD Catalogue for a full list of offerings.

Get to know us

CEO, Founder

Executive Assistant 

Designer and Multimedia Specialist

Bookkeeper and Chief Financial Officer

Project Manager and Zoom Producer

Trainer and Facilitator

Expert Coach and Facilitator

Passion Coach and Facilitator

Our Advisors

Neolé's Partners

Our Values

We must MAKE A DIFFERENCE

We all have the ability and responsibility to make a positive difference in the world. With a relentless belief in human potential, we strive to improve the wellbeing of people on every team so that they can contribute their best selves at work, at home, and in their communities.

We value CREATIVITY OVER CONFORMITY

We know that breakthrough results are possible when we are courageous, have a growth mindset, explore new ideas, and strive for continuous improvement. We specialize in creative thinking techniques that enable us to see every challenge as an opportunity and to bring out the creative thinking superpowers inherent in every team.

We practice RADICAL LOVE

We believe that health and wellness have a direct impact on a person’s (and team’s!) productivity, happiness and performance. We believe we all have a responsibility to create and sustain healthy workplaces and communities, and that doing so is an act of love. We practice gratitude daily, and believe in letting the people in our lives know they are appreciated. Our partners, clients and team members are all valued members of our community.

We are BETTER TOGETHER

We believe strongly in collective potential; whether collaborating remotely or in person, we are bigger than the sum of our parts. That’s why we see our clients as partners, who we engage and include in everything we do, knowing that everyone benefits from collaboration, open communication, and the skills and experience of our whole team.

We value HOPE OVER FEAR

We know that we have some big, audacious goals, and we refuse to let fear of risk and the unknown get in our way. We believe in challenging the status quo with creativity and visionary thinking, and we applaud and support our partners and team members as they work towards their own ambitious dreams.

The Meaning of "Neolé"

The word Neolé is a combination of Neo + Olé. ‘Neo’ stands for new/original and Olé is a Spanish expression that is shouted out loud when something or someone makes a strong impression or makes a positive impact on the audience.

Strengthening Leaders and Energizing Teams

Don't miss out on new resources, tips, and invitations to our free events designed to enhance your wellness, sustain high performance, and optimize engagement
at work and in life.

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© Neolé 2024

Don't miss out on new resources, tips, and invitations to our free events designed to enhance your wellness, sustain high performance, and optimize engagement at work and in life.

Sign up for our newsletter!

Strengthening Leaders and Energizing Teams

© Neolé 2024

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Ginny Santos

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CEO, Neolé

Ginny Santos works primarily with organizations that truly care about their people and want a healthy workplace culture that enables and sustains high performance. That’s why she founded Neolé, a training, facilitation and event production company that specializes in designing and facilitating team development and retreats that make a lasting impact— resulting in increased engagement, productivity and retention, and most importantly, a healthy workplace culture.

Everything she does is influenced by her drive to have a positive impact, and the practical skills and knowledge she developed while completing a Master’s of Science in Creativity and Change Leadership and several graduate certificates in Solution-Focused Coaching, Nutrition Sciences and Productive Thinking. Ginny is also a professor at Wilfrid Laurier University where she teaches creativity and innovation to executive MBA students.

Originally from Spain, she is an entrepreneurial mother, a digital geek and an enthusiastic dancer in the privacy of her kitchen.

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Rizza Llaban

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Executive Assistant

Rizza is passionate about building relationships and providing quality service. With 15 years of Client Management Support for international banks and entrepreneurs under her belt, she has perfected how to communicate and understand what the client needs and provide resolution. She specializes in creating harmonious workflows and streamlining processes to increase efficiency. Her goal is for busy entrepreneurs to get back their time and money freedom. She is driven in helping create superheroes! – A Pepper Potts to Tony Stark! She believes in quality over quantity and that all big things come from small beginnings. She is a new addition to the team, all the way from the Philippines!

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BRI CARTER

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Designer and Multimedia Specialist

Bri is a creative designer and multimedia artist with specialties in animation and illustration. Always looking to improve and expand her skills, she has done work in areas including illustration, web design, graphic design, 3D renders and animation. Bri always puts her best work forward for Neolé’s social media, videos, and website. She also uses her tech know-how and organization skills to format data in client reports and presentations.

With a passion for bringing joy and inspiration to other people, telling stories through imagery and having it resonate with others is the reason why Bri started her art journey. She believes strongly in the importance and connection of art and creativity to personal wellbeing. Growing up watching movies always had a huge impact on her, no matter the story. She wanted to be involved in the process and make the same impact for other people.

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Cara Jordan

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Bookkeeper and Chief Financial Officer

As a contract CFO to start-ups, NPO’s and consulting firms, Cara manages all things financial at Neolé. Never one to put all her eggs in one basket, she finds that her intuitive nature, the diversity of her client base and the exposure to a range of perspectives and business interests/concerns gives her an advantage in meeting the needs of her clients.

With a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from the University of Victoria and with teaching certificates in Canada and the UK, she continues to be an advocate for Mathematics education reforms as a steering committee member of the Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences Education Forum and co-host of their annual Mathematics Education Research Day in January. More recently, she has become the Treasurer of Leading Word.

Backpacking through Central America, working her way across Australia and teaching overseas equipped her with a comprehensive education and a sense of global citizenship which translates to indispensable problem-solving skills and a passion for utilizing Mathematics as the tool for greater understanding of any company’s financial position and prospects.

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Erm Lombardi

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Project Manager and Zoom Producer

Erm Lombardi, Certified Zoom Producer, collaborates with Neolé by helping to develop and co-facilitate virtual workshops. She assists in the creation of engaging digital training to mirror an in-person experience. Erm manages the technical details including the behind-the-scenes set-up and in the moment troubleshooting for a seamless client experience. Her collaborative and fun approach ensures that virtual participants have a positive and meaningful experience with on-line training.

Erm is Certified as is an Audio Book Narrator as well. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Western Ontario, and is a lifelong student of personal growth and development. She lives in Vaughan, Ontario with her family and loves outdoor life, working out, sports and reading non fiction books.

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Dan Bigonesse

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Trainer and Facilitator

As a trainer and facilitator, Dan has spent his career helping people expand their thinking and discover new possibilities. With his quick wit, probing questioning skills and productive thinking techniques Dan helps clients engage their whole brain and find solutions to their challenges.

Whether facilitating a training workshop, a new product ideation, a strategic planning session, or just a plain old meeting, Dan brings his positive energy and focus to the task. He is known for delivering high content sessions in a relaxed and entertaining style. Underlying Dan’s passion for deliberate thinking is a deep commitment to helping people learn and achieve useful outcomes.

Dan is a past trustee of the Creative Education Foundation and on the faculty of the Creative Problem-Solving Institute. He is also a certified practitioner of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), the Facet5 Personality Profile, the FourSight Thinking Profile, and NeuroColor, a unique, neuroscience approach to personality assessment.

Dan makes his home in Ottawa where he lives with his daughter and his crazy chocolate lab. When not working, you can find Dan hiking with his dog and listening to some mind-expanding podcasts.

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Karla Smith

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Expert Coach and Facilitator

Karla Smith is a Personal Transformational Coach, Speaker, Writer, and Self-Love Expert dedicated to showing people how to courageously choose self-love so they can live a life of their own creation.

She has a degree in psychology from York University and has her certification as a life-skills coach from George Brown College. For more than a decade, Karla has impacted hundreds of lives in her private practice, as a facilitator for various in-person and online groups, coaching from the stage, and leading and guest speaking at numerous workshops and retreats.
She believes that we are all capable and equipped to love ourselves deeply and when we make that choice we become better team players, able to build strong connections, communicate effectively and openly, while valuing ourselves and our team members.

Karla is a brilliant problem solver and deep thinker who offers a unique opportunity for groups to elevate personally, as well as, professionally. Her optimistic, uplifting perspective to life propels participants to take the inspired actions they need to deepen team relationships and grow as people.

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Shilbee Dhalla-Kim

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Passion Coach and Facilitator

Shilbee Dhalla-Kim coaches changemakers, entrepreneurs, and community builders in moving from confusion to clarity, from being stuck to action and from status quo to change. She has coached changemakers at organizations including Innoweave, Social Innovation Canada, and the United Nations Association in Canada, and has facilitated workshops for organizations such as Cossette, Accelerate Her Future, and the Kingston Economic Development Corporation. She is also an instructor at McMaster University.

She uses anti-oppressive, intersectional approaches to help people and organizations understand their power, agency and privileges within the context of structural, interpersonal, and internalized barriers. With over a decade of professional experience in the social innovation ecosystem, Shilbee coaches clients in clarifying values, leadership approaches, and innovative business models that align with their values.

She has previously served as the social enterprise manager at the Native Women’s Resource Centre of Toronto, manager at the Centre for Social Innovation in Regent Park, and workstream manager of Entrepreneurship Policy at the Brookfield Institute for Innovation + Entrepreneurship.

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Laura Bowley

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Senior Virtual Event Producer and Facilitator

Laura’s mission is to create conversations that transcend differences and spark change. As a facilitator and meeting designer, Laura combines principles of participatory management with the power of technology to create virtual spaces that connect people and promote dialogue. She is an early adopter of Zoom video conferencing, which is her preferred platform for facilitating webinars, meetings, round tables, consultations and training. Laura also facilitates using a number of asynchronous online tools, and she is constantly on the lookout for new technology that will meet our clients’ needs.

Laura’s specialty is integrative thinking: she works with clients, both one-on-one and in groups, to problem-solve, generate big ideas, and act on them. Prior to joining Neolé, she was a location-independent communications consultant, doing the “digital nomad” thing long before it was fashionable! She has a Bachelor of Business Management and is a 2015 Fellow of the School for Social Entrepreneurs. Most recently, Laura has been honing her facilitation skills through courses on Group Facilitation Methods and Transformational Strategies with ICA Associates.

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Marsha Shandur

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Storytelling and Persuasive Communications Coach and Trainer

Marsha Shandur (of Yes Yes Marsha) is a Storytelling and Persuasive Communications Coach and Trainer. She has taught thousands of individuals and groups of executives, entrepreneurs and professionals across Canada, the US and the UK, including speaking at World Domination Summit in Portland, at Women’s Executive Network events in Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto and working with clients like Meta (Facebook), RBC, Loblaw Companies Inc, HelloFresh and Shopify. She is the host, organizer and storytelling coach for True Stories Told Live, Toronto’’s largest storytelling show.

Before launching her career as a Storytelling and Persuasive Communications Coach, Marsha spent 15 years working as a Radio DJ, where she gained a powerful understanding of how to tell stories in a way that fosters connection, trust, engagement and loyalty. Her work has been featured in Forbes, BBC, CBC, the Toronto Star and Mashable.

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Stormz

Neolé is the key local partner for Stormz in all of Canada.

With our Stormz expertise we are able to use the best digital technology to facilitate efficient collaborative workshops. Stormz maximizes the potential for engagement across regions and time zones as well as in live meetings with hundreds of participants. Participants can work on the same challenge in real time or over time, to contribute and capture their thinking.

Stormz operates on the cloud or on a local server (if security of data is a concern). With Stormz we are able to eliminate the need for Post-it Notes™ and flip chart paper. We facilitate collaboration, diverse input and decision making in real time and provide immediate reports at the press of a button.
Companies that use Stormz include BNP Paribas, Alcatel-Lucent, AF2R La Mondiale, College La Cite, and many more.

FourSight

Neolé’s team members are certified in FourSight so that we can provide you with a scientific assessment of your team’s thinking preferences.

Today, innovation is vital for every organization. Yet each of us approaches problem solving differently. Understanding your particular approach toward innovating can enable success in our ever-changing world. FourSight gives teams and organizations insight into each individual’s preferred way of clarifying, generating, developing and implementing ideas. How? By asking a series of simple questions. Each has been carefully developed and thoroughly researched to provide a clear perspective of how you can innovate with others most effectively.

Companies that use FourSight include: IBM, Disney, Google, Kraft, DuPont, HP, Coca-Cola, 3M, Intel, Nike, Mott’s, Kimberly-Clark, General Motors, Duncan Hines, Pfizer, Prudential, State Farm Insurance, CBC, BBC, Manulife Financial, Vodafone, Pfizer, the American Cancer Society, Fisher-Price, the Center for Creative Leadership, Royal Bank, Johnson & Johnson, USBank, Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, United Way and the State University of New York.

Pro.Play

When we talk about role plays, we refer to tools that have been used in working environments for a long time. And also when using apparently children’s toys to achieve results in professional settints as well.

However, perhaps until now the new category that Pro.Play can bring has not been created, using children’s toys to perform role-playing games in 3rd person, living and exploring the interactions and changing the models in real time to learn and improve.

The Pro.Play® method created and designed by Juan Prego, allows modeling situations and going beyond stories to carry out interactive interventions. The official PLAYMOBIL pro Kit is accompanied by templates to apply the techniques and tools and extract the maximum value in each dynamic both individually and in small teams and entire organizations.

FLIPU

Neolé co-founded FliP University: Flipping online learning on its head with carefully curated online courses that are best taken with your team.

We’ve taken the best of what in-person workshops offer and put it online. FliP U content is thoroughly modern, pracademic (practical and grounded in academic research), sassy and transformative. We deliver life-changing courses, game-changing knowledge, and career-changing skills.

Robert Wakulat

Managing Director of Courage Co-Lab Inc. & Founding Law Partner at Wakulat Dhirani LLP

Robert is the Managing Director of Courage Co-Lab Inc., where he connects corporate partners to creative processes. He is a Founding Law Partner at Wakulat Dhirani LLP, a professional services firm embedded at the Centre for Social Innovation, where he focuses on supporting social entrepreneurs working to alleviate social or environmental challenges.

Robert is highly sought after to lead workshops on corporate law and enterprise structure across the GTA with community-based organizations, the Toronto Public Library and post-secondary institutions such as Ryerson University’s Social Innovation Zone. This includes recurring guest instructor roles with the School for Social Entrepreneurs and Toronto Artscape’s Launchpad program for creative entrepreneurs.