Hands-on, pragmatic Leadership Training

For Leaders, by Leaders

Research shows that the most effective way to learn is by experience, and this is the key principle that Tree Trunk Partners uses in all of its training programs and workshops.

All Tree Trunk trainers are experienced business leaders with a track record of successfully leading teams and businesses in different industries. We believe this is an essential ingredient for effective training. It allows our trainers to connect with participants from the first moment, to understand their situation and the challenging VUCA realities of today’s business world. In most cases, our trainers can speak from direct experience about situations raised by participants.

When we develop a training program for a client, we partner closely with them to ensure that all the interactive exercises and materials are tailored and relevant for their business. We design realistic roleplays and other types of experiential exercises, reflecting typical situations for the business and company culture. Sometimes we invite senior leaders from the business to get involved, and upon request we use professional business actors so participants can practice effective leadership skills in the most realistic environment possible.

We introduce participants to tangible models and frameworks that can be applied in their business environment. We don’t lecture about theoretical models or “interesting” concepts that cannot be immediately applied (although we often provide references and reading recommendations for those who want to get into the theory).

Instead of a classroom, we provide a learning laboratory. –
(Hartmut Kretschmer, Managing Partner at Tree Trunk Partners)

What makes a successful leader?

Today’s successful leaders need a specific set of skills to navigate a complex and dynamic world in an inspiring way, while staying closely connected to their teams. With the term “compassionate leadership,” we are referring to the process of through “maddening problems”-complex, ambiguous, and interconnected challenges for which there are no clear solutions.

We consider these to be some key competencies for such leaders:

Schlüsselkompetenzen für Führungskräfte

In the SELF dimension

  • Vision and goal setting:
    A clear and compelling personal vision, coupled with a sense of purpose, gives direction in addressing difficult problems.
  • Resilience and endurance:
    Tackling complex problems can be difficult and demanding. Leaders need resilience and endurance to overcome setbacks and obstacles.
  • Continuous learning:
    Leaders must be committed to their own growth and development by continuously learning and adapting their strategies as they navigate difficult challenges.
  • Humility and empathy:
    Leaders show humility by acknowledging their limitations and mistakes, and empathy by understanding the perspectives and emotions of their team members.
  • System-oriented approach:
    Leaders need to think holistically and understand the interconnectedness of the various elements in a complex environment. This enables them to identify root causes of problems and develop effective solutions.
  • Critical thinking and problem-solving skills:
    Leaders must be able to analyze complex situations, think critically, and develop innovative approaches to solve difficult problems.
  • Ethical leadership:
    Leaders must make decisions based on ethical principles and act responsibly in the face of difficult problems, taking into account the impact on society and the environment.

In the OTHERS dimension

  • Emotional intelligence (EQ):
    Leaders with high emotional intelligence are able to manage the complexity of interpersonal relationships and deal effectively with emotions, fostering a positive team culture. Unlike IQ, EQ can be practiced and learned.
  • Situational leadership:
    Successful leaders must be adaptable and flexible to address ever-changing problems in dynamic environments and find innovative solutions.
  • Creativity and innovation:
    Fostering creativity and a culture of innovation can lead to unconventional and breakthrough solutions to difficult problems.

In the TEAMS dimension

  • Vision and purpose:
    A clear and compelling vision, coupled with a sense of purpose, unites the team and provides direction in addressing difficult problems.
  • Collaboration and teamwork:
    Tough problems require diverse perspectives and expertise. Leaders must foster a collaborative and inclusive work environment to harness the collective intelligence of their teams.
  • Empowerment and trust:
    Leaders empower their team members by giving them authority and trusting them to make decisions, which enables flexibility and faster responses to new problems.
  • Transparent communication:
    Open and transparent communication builds trust within the team and fosters an environment where team members can freely express their ideas and concerns.
  • Inclusion and diversity:
    Leaders value inclusion and diversity within their teams, as different perspectives result in more comprehensive and innovative problem solving.


  • Stakeholder engagement:
    Leaders must engage with diverse stakeholders, including customers, employees, partners, and communities, to gain valuable insights and collaborate effectively.

When they possess and refine these competencies, leaders can effectively manage the complexity of difficult problems, foster strong team dynamics, and guide and drive positive change in today’s challenging world.

Tree Trunk Leadership Model

Want to find out more?

Contact us now for a free consultation.

Our 7 Tree Trunk principles for designing and delivering effective leadership programs


1. An effective Leadership Program is not the same as completing some days of training

An effective approach for Leadership Development integrates the actual training days with:

preparatory activities before the training days start;
learning activities between the days/modules;
post-training activities and methods for consolidating and refreshing key learnings.

All of these steps can be enhanced by creating a well-designed, digital community platform for participants.

2. The length, duration and structure of our training programs depend on the client’s needs

Sometimes we are asked to design and deliver a multi-year program composed of multiple training modules to be delivered to multiple cohorts from multiple parts of a large organization. At the other end of the spectrum, we are sometimes asked to deliver a one-day training for a small team, focussing on one or two specific skills only. And, of course, we often design and deliver something between these 2 extremes.

3. We integrate with any existing client frameworks, such as the company's values or leadership principles.

Often, our clients already have a defined set of leadership values, principles, roles, and/or behaviours and they would like to integrate these into an in-house training program, or even structure the program around them.

We build on what is already in place and are also happy to develop materials in line with any corporate identity guidelines or style guides. Combined with our willingness to “train the trainer” we can, if desired, gradually hand over the running of a training program to the customer.

We also believe that, irrespective of “level”, participants in any leadership program have intrinsic, collective wisdom which can, and should, be used for mutual learning. We see it as our job to design a program so that it is not just the trainers who are contributing their ideas, knowledge, and experience.

4. We pay great attention to how each training session is put together

We work closely together with our customers to ensure that our leadership programs deliver effective, memorable, and transferable learning. Here are some of the things we consider important:

  • Maintaining interest and attention
  • Composition of groups
  • Variation of methods
  • Managing energy levels
  • Process-oriented approach

5. Upon request, we co-design and co-deliver together with the client’s own resources.

The potential benefits of co-design and/or co-delivery include:

  • Ensuring that the “inside perspective” and needs of the client are fully reflected in the program design.
  • Ensuring that role-plays, case studies and exercises are relevant, or even based on actual examples/situations from the client’s own business.
  • Helping the client to establish an internal capability for delivering their own training in future without the need for external support.
  • Working together with Tree Trunk Partners as a co-designer and/or co-moderator of a leadership training program can be a development opportunity for the employees concerned.

6. Upon request, and depending on the business need, we integrate live training sessions with other learning elements such as:

Upon request, and depending on the business need, we integrate live training sessions with other learning elements such as:

  • Individual leadership coaching
  • Tailor-made 360° feedback tools
  • Psychometric instruments
  • Team development instruments
  • Culture-change or change management approaches
  • In-house digital learning/collaboration platforms
  • Virtual check-ins and/or refreshers

7. We measure our impact

Leadership development often represents a significant commitment for our customers, so it’s important to ensure there is a meaningful return on the investment. We work with our customers to clearly articulate the target outcomes of a program and then agree on the metrics and methods for measuring and reporting effectiveness. Ideally, this is done not only after completing a program, but also during the program, so we can continuously adapt the content and approach as the program unfolds.

How it works

Following the initial contact, we embark on a joint exploratory journey with the client to clarify the key learning themes for the program and develop the most effective approach(es).

This typically works like this:

  • Initial meeting(s) – understanding the client’s needs, environment, corporate culture and participant profiles (free of charge and without obligation)
  • Development and presentation of initial concept proposals (free of charge)
  • Agreement on additional program elements (e.g. Insights Discovery, MBTI, 360° Feedback, Individual Coaching, etc.)
  • Agreement on the degree of co-moderation (if desired)
  • Revision and refinement of content and methods based on ongoing feedback from the client
  • Reviewing the need for a learning platform for blended learning
  • Finalization of materials
  • Adjustment of content and methods during the program based on ongoing feedback from participants
  • Measurement of impact
Thanks to the support of Tree Trunk Partners my leadership team and I gained valuable new insights about our role as leaders, with tangible, positive effects on the whole business.

Gerard Trenerowski, Manager Supply Chain Design – Corning Incorporated (Luzern)

Possible focus points for a leadership training

  • Self-Management and Resilience
  • Purpose, Vision & Identity
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Shaping Relationships – Positive Use of Power & Influence
  • Feedback & Coaching as Development Tools
  • Team Dynamics and Team Development
  • Trust, Psychological Safety & Delegation
  • Leading in Complex Environments
  • Neuro-Leadership in Times of Change

Frequently Asked Questions:

Where can I do leadership training in Switzerland?

As a provider of tailor-made Leadership Training, Tree Trunk Partners delivers its training all over Switzerland. Most recently we have delivered leadership programs in Zürich, Zug, Basel, and Bern. Sometimes these programs are held on our customers’ premises, and sometimes offsite.

What is the difference between leadership training and management training?

There are many different definitions of “leadership”, as well as of “management” and we don’t claim to have THE perfect definitions. But we do have our favourites! In our view, high performing organisations excel in both management and leadership, and the difference between the two is summarized in our graphic here:

What are the benefits of leadership training?

Competent and consistent leadership is essential for long term, sustainable business success. It is essential for a culture of constructive handling of conflict, employee retention, positive team dynamics, higher levels of collaboration, cross-functional working and innovation.

How much does leadership training in Switzerland cost?

The cost for leadership training depends on many factors, such as the length (number of days), whether the training is an open-enrolment program or in-house, whether the training is “off-the peg” or tailor-made for the client, the location, the number of participants, the number and type of trainers, the cost of any materials and instruments used, the cost for any additional services such as coaching or feedback instruments, etc.. Tree Trunk Partners is specialized in the design and delivery of in-house Leadership Programs for diverse companies and organisations in Switzerland. Please contact us to get a detailed quote for a Leadership program tailored to your organisation’s exact needs.

What our customers say

The intensive modules allowed me to refresh known knowledge and learn new things. The parallel individual coaching also supported me in reflecting on my everyday leadership and my various roles in the company. Overall, a valuable enrichment for my skills as a leader.

- Luana Almonte -

Head of HR, Member of the Executive Board, GVB Gebäudeversicherung Bern

David understands the difference between being a boss and leading a team. Through his coaching I have learned a lot about leadership and have been able to apply this successfully in my team.

- Gerard Trenerowski -

Manager Supply Chain Design, Corning Incorporated

Thanks to the support of Tree Trunk Partners my leadership team and I gained valuable new insights about our role as leaders, with tangible, positive effects on the whole business.

- Petr Pridal-

CEO, MapTiler AG

Want to find out more?

Contact us now for a free consultation.

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Hartmut Kretschmer von Tree Trunk Partners

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