John Ferris Nerida Hillberg Leanne Ferris

John Ferris, BA(Hons), MAPS, FAICD – Managing Director, Psychologist

John Ferris is a Psychologist and Management Consultant with over 25 years consulting experience in industry and commerce throughout Australia and overseas. He is an Honours graduate in Organisational Psychology from The University of Queensland and a Fellow and Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. In 1991 John established Ferris Management Consultants to provide consulting support on organisation and management issues and on the assessment and selection of key people.

John has experience working with Boards and Senior Management in established organisations and in the development of new projects. Specific work has included definition of goals and organisation culture, strategy development, organisation review, executive recruitment including advertising and search, performance development and psychological appraisal.

His areas of specialisation have been applied across a range of industries in both private and public sectors. Specific industry experience includes mining, energy, transport and logistics, port operations, hospitality, food and beverage, architecture, construction and professional services.

John has worked on consulting projects for organisations throughout Australia, and has successfully completed search and selection assignments for senior positions in the People’s Republic of China, Taiwan, Indonesia, Colombia, Papua New Guinea, India, Mauritania, Italy and the United States of America. He has a broad range of experience in management consulting and has developed long-standing commercial relationships with clients. His experience includes his own consulting assignments as well as the management of consulting teams engaged in development of organisation culture, industrial relations strategy, training and development of managerial and supervisory teams and recruitment of senior managerial and technical staff.

Typical projects include:

  • organisation reviews examining culture, strategy and structure options to achieve business objectives;
  • facilitation of working arrangements and resolution of conflict between Owners and Contractors;
  • leadership and management of teams developing the “human engineering” elements of major resource projects;
  • design and implementation of performance development programs;
  • assessment and recruitment of senior managerial, supervisory and technical personnel for major private and public sector organisations throughout Australia and overseas.

Dr. Nerida Hillberg, BBehSc(Hons), MAPS, MAHRI – Director of Psychology

Nerida Hillberg, a Registered Psychologist, joined Ferris Management Consultants in 2002. Following her First Class Honours Degree in Psychology, Nerida was awarded a PhD in Organisational Psychology for her international research program that examined employee responses to mergers and acquisitions. She is a Member of the Australian Psychological Society (APS) and the Australian Human Resources Institute (AHRI), as well as a Board-Accredited Supervisor with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).

Nerida’s strengths lie in psychological assessment and recruitment and selection, particularly at senior managerial level. Her experience gained both within Australia as well as overseas, spans a range of industries. Nerida has developed a range of training workshops, employee assistance programs, and outplacement services. She has also managed significant projects in the following areas:

  • cultural change;
  • strategic planning;
  • management team development;
  • employee attitudinal surveying;
  • performance appraisal;
  • organisational design;
  • remuneration benchmarking.

Prior to her work at Ferris, Nerida was part of a team of five Allied Health Practitioners who successfully established a specialist employment agency for people with a mental illness – The National Employment and Psychological Services Centre (NEPS). She worked at NEPS for five years as an Employment Consultant and Training Coordinator.

Previously, Nerida was a member of the Department of Psychology teaching staff at Griffith University for two years. Her particular interests were organisational development and organisational culture.

Leanne Ferris, Acc Cert, MBA, GAICD – Director – Business Transformation

Leanne Ferris joined Ferris Management Consultants to utilise her extensive organisational and marketing expertise to focus on the people element of the challenges facing the human services sector across aged-care, community and disability as a result of the government’s reform of social services.

Leanne’s background in retail, and fast moving consumer goods where the customer has total choice and control of their purchasing decisions is aligned to the reform philosophy of choice and control of consumer-directed care and the associated social inclusion that community services can provide. Leanne is specifically working with organisations which are needing independent analysis, advice and recommendations for a pathway forward which could entail governance transformation, merging or acquiring, consortium collaboration, organisational strategy for new business and/or service models, go-to-market and value proposition planning, and the requisite people strategies to navigate and guide the workforce through the reform process.

Leanne is facilitating building relationships to explore new organisational structures that can respond to the changing market place and be financially sustainable. She is using her experience of mergers and acquisitions, her financial skills, disability sector experience and marketing knowledge, along with the Ferris best practice processes for people solutions to advise disability, aged-care and community service providers. Providers are facing significant external threats and opportunities, and Leanne is educating and enlightening them about the strategic options of merging, acquiring, collaborating or forming strategic relationships and how the people management element of these kinds of options is a critical success factor in achieving organisational objectives.