Leadership in Native American Organizational Management

The Wilson Organization (TWO) shapes its out-of-the-box leadership, innovation and problem-solving development methodology in ways that reach and produce desired outcomes among all levels of an organization’s workforce. Additionally, we design and navigate programs around and through market challenges coming from any number of sources. We’re either “leading the charge” or serving as support to the teams we’re coaching.

TWO grows the organization’s talent individually and collectively by pushing them beyond their comfort zones. They achieve leadership capacities that overcome adversity and ultimately achieve success.

Consider the impact of this approach which yielded dramatic results for a major State-recognized Native American tribe.

TWO led the development of a 30,000-page petition for federal recognition on behalf of the Eastern Pequot Indians of Connecticut. Through policy examination, statistical analysis, database design and information retrieval, the tribe’s petition was submitted to the Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Indian Affairs for review and approval.

Phase one began with raising an initial $3.5 million and later, an additional $12 million in venture capital, to contract legal specialists, cultural anthropologists, historians and genealogists. Simultaneously, it was important to generate community and statewide support for the tribe’s recognition and economic development.

Phase two required marketing this completed, heavily researched document to gain the support of federal decision-makers. Tribal officers led and supported by TWO’s Managing Director lobbied key Congressional leaders on the House Appropriations Committee and the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, Connecticut’s Governor, the State’s Attorney General and the Congressional delegation; as well as Connecticut’s two federally recognized tribes – the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan Nations. The result: federal recognition of the tribe’s legitimacy by the U.S. Department of the Interior was achieved in 2002.

TWO designs and implements complex business problem-solving strategies even in the face of limited resources.

Consider our work with a Native American college near Tulsa, Oklahoma:

In collaboration with the leaders on the College’s Executive Committee, TWO’s Managing Director Lawrence Wilson – a Trustee of the College – developed, revised and currently oversees a three-phased, quantitative strategic plan to broaden this four-year liberal arts college’s resources, as well as its appeal among Native American students and other ethnic groups. Our ongoing work is accomplishing three goals:

  • Stop the declining performance of key college revenue streams, as accomplished by restructuring leadership and implementing fixed and variable cost reductions;
  • Increase student enrollment and retention by benchmarking key enrollment data and implementing new institutional marketing and student recruiting initiatives;
  • Develop and launch initiatives applying soft skills and best practices that inspire leadership at all levels, innovative thought and action, and problem-solving.  The result: Development strategies garnering major donor, alumni, community and foundation support; capital improvements, team/committee collaborations and efficiencies, heightened professional communications, and management strategies that facilitate buy-in to critical change.

We stabilized the institution and re-positioned it effectively among key audiences including the influential Five Civilized Tribes in OK – the Creek, Seminole, Choctaw, Cherokee and Chickasaw nations.

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