Laura Freebairn-Smith

Laura Freebairn-Smith is the Partner and co-founder of OPG (Organizational Performance Group) and author of Abundance Leaders: Creating Energy, Joy, and Productivity in an Unsettled World.
Summary

Laura Freebairn-Smith is a Partner and co-founder at OPG. She has been a consultant for such distinguished organizations as the New York Times, Lemann Foundation, and ESPN. Her specialty is assisting leaders in realizing the full potential of their organizations through humanistic and analytical practices, while offering guidance in the redesign of infrastructure, the creation of strategic plans, and with organizational development.

Prior to founding OPG, Laura served as Director of Yale’s Organizational Development and Learning Center, which she helped create. Laura currently teaches leadership at Yale's Drama School.

Laura’s credentials include a BA from UC Berkeley (Philosophy and Political Science) and an MBA from the Yale School of Management. She holds a doctorate in Organizational Systems from Saybrook Institute and has published articles and chapters on organizational development topics, most recently on radical move leadership.

Prior to joining Yale, Laura founded Good Work Associates, a consulting firm providing strategic planning and organizational development. Before that, she served as Managing Director for the Gesell Institute of Human Development, as Chief Operating Officer for Jobs for the Future, and as Education Coordinator for the International Rescue Committee on the Thai/Cambodian border.

In addition to her teaching at Yale, Laura has taught at University of New Haven, Georgetown, and Central CT State University. She served on the Town of Hamden Charter Revision Committee and has served on numerous other boards in the past. Laura has received several leadership awards. For recreation, Laura enjoys running, writing poetry, tennis, and gardening.

Biography

Laura Freebairn-Smith is a respected Partner and co-founder at OPG, where her expertise in organizational development and leadership has made a significant impact. With a rich background in consulting for esteemed organizations like the New York Times, Lemann Foundation, and ESPN, she brings a wealth of experience to the table.

Laura's professional journey is characterized by three main areas of focus:

  • Creating Organizational Cultures: Laura excels in helping organizations develop and nurture their unique cultures. Her approach combines humanistic values with analytical strategies, enabling leaders to harness the full potential of their teams.

     
  • Teaching and Research: Laura is deeply committed to teaching and conducting research on organizational development topics. She imparts her knowledge as a leadership instructor at Yale's Drama School and contributes to the field through publications and research endeavors.

     
  • Consulting Expertise: Laura's consultancy work spans various aspects of organizational development, with a particular emphasis on strategic planning and organizational redesign. Her insights and guidance have been instrumental in shaping the future of numerous organizations.

Laura's educational journey reflects her commitment to excellence. She holds a BA in Philosophy and Political Science from UC Berkeley, an MBA from the Yale School of Management, and a doctorate in Organizational Systems from Saybrook Institute. Her academic background is complemented by practical experience and a track record of published articles and chapters in the field of organizational development.

Before co-founding OPG, Laura served as the Director of Yale's Organizational Development and Learning Center, a role she played in its creation. Her dedication to education is evident in her teaching roles at institutions like the University of New Haven, Georgetown, and Central CT State University.

Throughout her career, Laura has held key positions in various organizations, including Managing Director for the Gesell Institute of Human Development, Chief Operating Officer for Jobs for the Future, and Education Coordinator for the International Rescue Committee on the Thai/Cambodian border.

Laura's contributions extend beyond the professional sphere. She has actively participated in community service, including serving on the Town of Hamden Charter Revision Committee and various board positions. Her leadership has earned her several well-deserved awards.

Beyond her professional pursuits, Laura finds relaxation and inspiration in a range of activities. She is an avid runner, a poet, a tennis enthusiast, and a dedicated gardener. Laura Freebairn-Smith's multifaceted career and interests reflect a remarkable blend of intellect, leadership, and creativity.


Vision

Laura Freebairn-Smith's vision revolves around Abundance Leadership, an approach rooted in fostering environments where teams can realize their full potential. She seeks to encourage leaders and organizations to embrace this mindset, breaking down hierarchical barriers and unlocking the abundance of talent, creativity, and innovation that resides within their teams. 

Laura believes that Abundance Leadership is a catalyst for organizational growth, where collaborative and inclusive cultures empower individuals to thrive and contribute to the greater success of the organization. Her vision is to spread the principles of Abundance Leadership to create workplaces that are not only productive and efficient but also nurturing and fulfilling, ultimately leading to success on multiple fronts.


References

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Fri Mar 01 2024
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