Executive KnowledgeWorks
Leveraging Executive Education and Leader Development For Strategic Planning, Action Learning, Customized Executive Education and Enhanced Business Meetings - all supported by a philosophy of Breakthrough Centered Development.
Research and Publishing:
Eight National Benchmarking Reports.



Project Associate
Fast Track Program


Some of us are well suited for big corporations, others for our own at-home solo operation. Still others thrive in the stable midsize manufacturing facility. Others excel in the fast growing high-tech startup. No single work environment is ideal for everyone.

But nearly every work environment is an ideal match for someone. Over the past one and a half decades, Executive KnowledgeWorks seems to have been an especially good environment for individuals who:

  • love to learn
  • are bright -- quick studies
  • are self-starters with a strong work ethic
  • are willing to take on the challenges and frustrations sometimes associated with influencing individual and organization change
  • can express themselves well -- especially in writing
  • are truly flexible
  • have a positive mental attitude
  • possess the relatively unusual combination of attention to detail and attention to others (the latter requiring strong listening skills)
  • have a good sense of humor
  • are grounded and quietly confident without arrogance.

What these individuals have often received in exchange for their hard work and dedication has been:
  • rapid personal and professional development
  • the opportunity to work with the senior most levels of major corporations
  • as much responsibility as their appetites dictated
  • rich variety on both a daily basis and over the life of their career
  • a close, apparent and real connection between their work and the success of their associates and the firm
  • pay for performance - a true meritocracy that recognizes contribution over age, gender and/or pedigree
  • a company that strives to accommodate the changes in the life situations of its valued associates
  • growth and accomplishment sometimes well beyond their own expectations
  • a sense of community.

Executive KnowledgeWorks has never been the ideal organization for everyone. But it has been a valued environment for a small number of admittedly unique individuals. As we conduct our 16th year of business, we continue to search for and welcome the newest of those individuals.



Project Associate

Our Project Associate positions are entry-level, heavy immersion, Fast Track career opportunities. The hours are long, the projects and assignments are varied and challenging and the opportunities for rapid professional growth are exceptional.

Each of the programs we design, develop and help implement are customized for the client and built around that client’s key emerging business issues. While we sometimes incorporate "soft skills" training into our programs and processes, our work starts with and is heavily grounded in the client’s most strategic and critical emerging business issues. Project Associates quickly become immersed in these cutting edge issues.

Executive KnowledgeWorks’ programs and processes utilize world-class university faculty, corporate CEOs and government leaders. Our clients tend to be justifiably demanding and, in our 15 years, we’ve had the good fortune of seldom disappointing them. That has required an intense commitment to quality. Project Associates are expected to continue to build on our commitment.

There are two complementary parts to our business. In addition to our consulting, we also conduct large-scale, nationwide, interview-based research on emerging human resource development trends. Our studies help corporations understand the cutting edge and best practices in executive and human resource development.

Project Associates are immediately and regularly involved in both aspects of the business -- our custom-built executive development interventions and our nationwide benchmarking studies. Because we are a small firm, Project Associates are also involved in many other aspects of the business. Our Fast Track Program is intended to provide a breadth of general business experience over time (e.g. marketing, public relations, information technology, finance, etc.).

Our interest in diversity includes the academic preparation and/or work experience of our associates. While we seek Project Associates for our Fast Track Program that have an interest and/or experience in human resource development, it is a plus if those individuals also have a background (education, training and/or experience) in related or supportive fields such as computers, programming, graphic arts, marketing and finance.

Skills, Knowledge and Attributes of Executive KnowledgeWorks’ Project Associates

  • High integrity
  • Friendly and personable on the outside - tenacious and determined on the inside
  • Strong writing skills - ability to write articles for publication
  • Flexibility and adaptability
  • Brightness - a quick study
  • A strong work ethic - a self starter
  • Project management experience
  • Conceptual thinking - ability to understand concepts, models and frameworks

Executive KnowledgeWorks also offers positions at the Project Manager and Project Director levels. In addition to retaining the qualities described above, individuals in these positions possess more experience and tend to hold more responsibility than a Project Associate.
Essential Career Abilities of a Project Manager or Project Director:

  • Analyze data and prepare reports that clearly capture meaningful, if not powerful, insights
  • Lead and strongly contribute to the program design process of executive-level programs

Additional strengths that would bring value to our firm include:

  • Meeting facilitation
  • Management of organizational change initiatives
  • Experience with 360 feedback instrumentation
  • Knowledge of instructional design technologies
  • Instructional experience

Our firm is a meritocracy -- we are committed to recognizing and rewarding performance, regardless of age, experience or pedigree. Employees of Executive KnowledgeWorks have every opportunity to earn steadily increasing responsibility and reward.



Position Description
As participants in our fast-track program, interns have the opportunity to experience all aspects of our business, including research, publishing, organizational development, business strategy and executive education. Under the guidance of our full-time associates, interns may assist in the design and implementation of a client initiative or contribute to a National Benchmarking report. Interns also assist with internal functions, such as Systems, Public Relations and Marketing, and are expected to contribute to staff meetings on subjects as diverse as marketing strategy and project planning. Executive KnowledgeWorks assigns responsibilities based upon individual competencies and organizational need. Interns receive substantive and challenging assignments, for which they are held accountable. EKW compensates its interns according to performance and is serious about their personal and professional growth.

Candidate Profile
The ideal intern candidate is a graduate student or a junior or senior undergraduate. He or she is dedicated to the principle of continuous personal growth and development, and this commitment to excellence is reflected in the candidate’s academic, employment and personal histories. The candidate has solid analytical and writing skills, as well as high integrity and a strong work ethic. Such an individual is independent, self-motivated and flexible. Although EKW’s business focuses on research and business consulting, candidates with experience and interest in other fields, including computers, programming, graphic arts, marketing and finance, are welcome.

Candidates interested in EKW intern opportunities may contact Sara Slocombe at (815) 356-3557.


Fast Track Program

Since we first opened our doors some 17 years ago, Executive KnowledgeWorks has been committed to growing our own future leaders. While we have successfully hired a number of talented and strong contributors at the middle and upper levels of our firm, the majority of our management team was consciously and aggressively prepared for increasing responsibility starting early in their EKW career.

A key to the development of our associates has always been our functional rotations. When combined with early and significant responsibilities on both the consulting and research/publishing sides of our business, those functional rotations represent the heart of our Fast Track Program.

We’ve learned that our Fast Track Program is not only attractive to our associates on a personal level but that it also makes great sense for our business. It has consistently paid for us to take the development of our associates seriously. When we have, we’ve been able to bring greater value earlier and more often to our firm and our clients. We also end up realizing greater retention of our most valued associates, correspondingly lower recruiting costs and probably greater client retention.

Because the Fast Track Program is so good for the business, we’ve taken great pains to insure that it has substance. All of our project associates and project managers are invited to participate in the program. All participants in the program engage in functional rotations -- taking on new responsibilities in finance, human resources, systems, marketing, public relations or operations / logistics every six months.

Every functional rotation begins with a clarification of performance and developmental goals for the assignment, and ends with a detailed review of accomplishments and learnings. In addition to the reviews in each of the functional rotations, during each consulting and research/publishing assignment there is regular feedback for both the individual and the participating team. We model those feedback sessions on the "after action reviews" initiated and refined by the military -- with a focus on understanding and archiving what has transpired so that we might strengthen our performance in the future.

Finally, to insure that the entire organization makes the development of each associate a high priority, we aggressively tie compensation to Fast Track and developmental performance. As a result, the Fast Track Program has become the cornerstone of our strong emphasis on Executive KnowledgeWorks as a meritocracy. We enthusiastically pay for and promote performance.


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