aephoria consulting for organisations

Unlock your organisation’s potential with leadership and management maturation programmes,
team cohesion initiatives, leadership maturity coaching and diversity interventions.
Contact us now.

why aephoria?

Our approach to leader transformation is centred upon two methodologies: leadership personality and leadership maturity. We blend face-to-face workshops, online group workshops, eLearning, one-on-one coaching, and action research projects into unique, stretching, fun and engaging learning journeys. Maturity as a holding methodology for human development work is a game changer. We promote the Enneagram (personality) and use it widely; however, we are constantly amazed by the power of maturity as a source of sustainable human change AND competitive advantage.

The combination of working with personality and individual/systemic maturity at the same time across a whole organisational system is transformational for fast-tracking self-and-other-awareness, behaviour shifts, and maturity in individuals, teams, and across the entire organisation. Maturity can also be measured to provide a reliable return on investment indicator for human development. This is seen as something of a ’holy grail’ of leadership and management development, a field that often attracts criticism for its lack of measurement criteria.

We have been running leadership and management development programmes using our methodology for 12 years as Aephoria, and for between 20 and 30 years as individual team members. Our leadership maturity methodology is scientifically and academically proven to support the rapid maturation of leaders and managers.

why aephoria for leadership
consulting and development?

We are a team of pragmatic and highly experienced academics, coaches, and facilitators. Founded by Dr Julia Kukard and Dr Simon Kettleborough in 2010, Aephoria is a global company built around a unique blend of serious academic credibility and profoundly practical interventions. Joined by Lucille Greeff in 2014, our leadership has spent the last 30 years working within the fields of personality, vertical development, and maturity.

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Dr. Simon Kettleborough

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Dr. Julia Kukard

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Lucille Greeff

Operating at the intersections of academia, business, and psychology as we do, there are very few companies as well-rounded as Aephoria in the field of leadership and management development and coaching.

We have long relationships with our clients. We value long term relationships because they allow us to have a deeper understanding of the culture and needs of the client organisation, and this in turn enables profoundly transformational work

how we support organisations

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organisational maturity

This approach focuses on guiding whole organisations through a transformative journey towards a more mature, self-aware, and resilient operational state. Because we can measure and profile the maturity level of an entire organisational system, we are able to work strategically and alchemically with the cross-cutting issues and the dynamics of leadership, culture, performance, strategy, and workforce diversity, placing the right interventions in the right places for optimal improvement and growth.

The objective of this systemic approach is to elevate the organisation from a reactive, short-term focus to a more visionary, long-term perspective that is adaptive and innovative. In doing so, organisations can expect outcomes such as deeply relational collaboration between individuals and groups, the mature transmission of feedback, visionary strategic thinking, skillful performance management discussions, transdisciplinary alliances between teams and business units, an improved capacity to implement and benefit from diversity and inclusion, better self-care and care for others, and future-fit leadership capabilities.

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team development

Aephoria team development consulting focuses on the optimisation of team relationships, cohesion, and performance by addressing the specific relational and behavioural challenges faced by a team in real-time. These could range from giving and receiving feedback, collaboration vs competition, navigating volatility in the market and the organisation, personal accountability for performance, strategic thinking, psychological safety, building leadership resilience, and trust.

Employing a dual facilitator-coach approach, we aim to balance individual needs with group dynamics, fostering both individual and collective growth. Activities include a variety of engaging experiences, from dialogue to creative exercises, aiming to accelerate a team’s overall maturity. The goal is to create psychologically safe and mature team environments, conducive to effective collaboration, innovative problem-solving and elevated performance.

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leadership maturity coaching (LMC)

Aephoria Leadership Maturation Coaching (LMC) is a coaching methodology developed by Aephoria over the last 12 years. It integrates multiple domains of development into one integrated process and measure of identity and maturity that can have an impact on how a leader shows up at work. These domains include cognitive, moral, spiritual, interpersonal, somatic, racial, and intrapersonal development, among others.

This methodology draws strongly on Constructivist Development Psychology (adult ‘stage’ development), Maturity and Ego Development research, and Aephoria’s own research based on over 7,000 assessments deployed and assessed globally. This methodology also draws on the existential philosophy of Steve Biko and this coaching approach utilises the AIM tool as its foundation.

The model is based on the idea that when our own identity is limited, we see the world in a less contextual and more restricted way than we would at a later stage. How we experience ourselves determines how we experience the world, and how we lead and manage in the world. Furthermore, when we are more mature, we can acknowledge and work with many more aspects of ourselves. This means we can understand others better and even that we have access to a wider repertoire of behaviours. We are more relational and agile in our responses to the world.

The model can be used to predict, coach, and develop leadership skills, particularly self-management and stress management, relationship skills, strategic thinking skills, sustainability orientation, predisposition to diversity & inclusion, and the capacity to manage volatility, change and complexity.

More mature leaders demonstrate enhanced personal effectiveness, better performance, increased capacity to inspire and manage others, improved talent retention, and a more resilient and strategic capacity to navigate the world and ensure business continuity.

We have coached and continue to coach numerous high-profile executive leaders in global corporations, governments, academic institutions, and state-owned enterprises. We understand the wicked complexity inherent in their jobs, and we know how to support them in a way that allows them to survive and thrive in high pressure, volatile, and intensely political environments.

Another crucial learning from our coaching is that solidifying the inner worlds of leaders is often the best way to stabilise an organisation during times of turmoil. This is because leaders cannot control the context that they work in, but they can learn to control how they respond to it.

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diversity, equity & inclusion

Are you ready to find out what’s really happening in your organisation around Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)?
The importance of DEI in organisations is now widely recognised. Extensive research consistently demonstrates that successful DEI initiatives drive employee engagement, foster innovation, enhance organisational resilience, and improve adaptability in a changing global environment.

However, many, if not most, organisations are struggling with DEI. It is a highly contextual, complex and emergent field. It is made more complex by the fact that experiences of exclusion may not always be diversity-related and can be opportunistic and get mixed up with performance issues - thus, it may be impossible in many cases to determine what is true and who is right. Inclusion is not a world of rationality; it is sometimes better to consider how to support people to feel included than to determine who is more discriminated against or who is right or wrong.

Many organisations are also falling short in their DEI efforts because they lack empirical data. That’s why Aephoria offers an evidence-based approach to DEI, addressing key aspects like leadership commitment, recruitment, inclusivity, and well-being.

We support our clients along the whole DEI journey, building a robust business case specific to their organisation, and helping to craft a compelling vision, strategy, and operational play book around DEI. However, we believe that these activities should all emanate from robust, scientifically derived data on what is really happening in the organisation.

Our organisational DEI diagnostic tool, InclusionIndex, was designed in 2003 from the bottom up by academics, thought leaders, and DEI and HR professionals. It is survey-based, easy-to-use and has been deployed to more than 60,000 people worldwide.

our way of working

Leadership group and team dynamics are highly complex, often with numerous elements at play
within group settings. To address this complexity, we employ a dual facilitator-coach approach that
enables us to hold groups safely in a container conducive to working deeply and transformatively.

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Psychological Safety

Our facilitators offer mirroring of the diversity dynamics of the team, building greater psychological safety and trust among team members.

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Tough Love

We believe in the power of tough love. We challenge individuals within the group while simultaneously providing the support and affirmation they need. This balanced approach fosters rapid personal growth and development within the team.

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Simultaneously Individual
and Group Focused

Our approach delves deeply into individual needs while maintaining a firm grip on overall group dynamics. This allows us to address individual and group issues concurrently, ensuring that everyone’s concerns are acknowledged and addressed.

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Balancing Insight
and Engagement

Our approach involves the art of reading the room and intuitively gauging group reactions and interests while actively facilitating group discussions and activities. This blend of observation and engagement allows us to guide group dynamics effectively.

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Diversity and

We encourage interactions with various facilitator personalities, styles, expertise, and experiences. This promotes fairness and balance in conversations and serves as a role model for collaboration, flexibility, disagreement resolution, and partnership within the group.

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We utilise a variety of engaging experiences, including dialogue, music, video, creative exercises (such as flower arranging, clay work, and drawing), and bodywork like Biodanza movement sessions and breathwork. These experiences create the necessary heat to accelerate the group’s maturity process.

why choose aephoria?

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Intellectual Property

We are committed to researching and developing the most up-to-date approaches, methodologies, and thought leadership available to support our developmental work with global leaders. We know that our position as thought leaders in this area is secure only if we continue to search out the most compelling, innovative research, frameworks, approaches and thinking.

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20+ Years
of Expertise

The individuals in our team all have at least two decades of experience in running successful, high-impact leadership and team development interventions in global organisations. We attract and retain the most mature and experienced people from the fields of leadership and management development, coaching, diversity, organisational transformation, OD, psychotherapy, and sustainability.

We are all people skilled at communicating across race, gender, work levels, languages and other demographics and we are ourselves regularly supervised, therapised, and coached. In this regard, we take our own medicine.

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We evaluate the impact of our programmes using qualitative research and exit interviews and using maturity assessments (test-retest methodology before and after programmes). Our maturity assessment is rigorous and statistically validated. Our maturity programmes significantly outperform other global programmes.


Aephoria is accredited as an
International Enneagram Association
(IEA) School, one of only 22 in the world.

We are also accredited at a UK-based standards organisation, The Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM), for Level 5 in Leadership and Management at Award, Certificate and Diploma level (equivalent to SAQA level 6). This means that we can award certificates that are global in their relevance and endorsed by SAQA here in South Africa.

Aephoria faculty members are registered with:

  • The Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA)

  • The South African Board for People Practices (SABPP)

  • The UK Universities Psychotherapy and Counselling Association (UPCA)

  • Coaches and Mentors of South Africa (COMENSA)

  • The International Enneagram Association (IEA)

  • The International Coaching Federation (ICF)

  • The UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP)

  • The UK Society for Existential Analysis (SEA)

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why our clients love aephoria

Chwayita Mareka

I have worked with Aephoria to develop leadership and managerial capacity since 2011. What I enjoy about their work is the directness and authenticity, of their facilitators and of their developmental processes.

Time and again I hear stories of deep awareness building and life transformation from people who have attended an Aephoria programme. And what I have personally always appreciated about Simon and Julia is their commitment to our business and their willingness and capacity to build a long-lasting relationship of trust with me over many years.

Chwayita Mareka

Adam Cooke

As the Head of Learning and Development at Media24, I have been working with Aephoria since 2020 on various leadership development and coaching engagements. Aephoria has now run three long-term programmes

with Media24 in the past three years, focusing on how the interior world of leaders effects decision-making, strategic thinking, relationship-building, team leadership and capacity for uncertainty. These programmes have been mostly supporting our high-potential leaders who will be tasked with taking our organisation into a radically new environment for media in the coming years. We have started a fourth programme this year.

Throughout these engagements, I have experienced Aephoria as deeply committed, knowledgeable and professional, showing great expertise in the field of human and vertical development. I would not hesitate to recommend Aephoria, its people and its methodologies, to any organisation seeking to mature its leaders, its organisation and its culture.

Adam Cooke

Prof. Corne Davis

The UJ Transformation Women’s Leadership Programme made a tremendous difference to my life. First, engaging with other women leaders at this level presented incredible insights and enabled us to depart from a position of

openness and vulnerability.

It challenged me to take a critical look at my personal life and the presence and absence of support structures in my professional and personal life. The introduction of the Enneagram personality analysis was an eye-opening experience. I came to understand myself and others a lot better and this enabled me to engage at a much more effective level with other colleagues.

Overall, I gained a lot more self-confidence and a sense of my own authenticity and I observed similar changes in my colleagues who spoke more openly about their feelings and opinions as the programme progressed. Both facilitators were approachable and encouraging at all times and we learned to appreciate their different yet complimentary approaches as individuals. We always looked forward to our engagement with them. The personal coaching was a major contributing part of the programme and I enjoyed it very much. I gained a lot of knowledge and personal confidence through this experience and I have noticed a remarkable mindshift in terms of where I want to go with my career and what exactly I need to do to get there. I would recommend this programme to any woman who is ready to take a giant leap forward.

Professor Corné Davis