About Rule6

Founder,  Andy Powell

I am an insightful thought partner who delivers solutions for Organizational and Leadership Change challenges that are unique, practical and sustainable.

I have led successful culture and organizational change initiatives for everything from a sales force of over 12,000 employees to a biotech with less than 80 colleagues.  My culture change strategy for a global R&D organization combined elements of Appreciative Inquiry and viral change,  resulting in dramatic improvement in key metrics.

My particular strengths are:

  1. An ability to listen and draw from my broad experience to create solutions that are creative yet practical.
  2. Ensuring that all recommendations originate from a thorough understanding of target business outcomes.
  3. My interest in educating and building capability in my clients' organization.


 I have 33 years experience in all areas of HR with an emphasis in organizational development.  I held senior roles in Exxon, Pfizer and BFGoodrich and have worked in unionized manufacturing sites as well as with executive leadership teams.  My global experience includes most of western Europe and Hong Kong.

I have played key OD roles in 5 different mergers / acquisitions and several major restructures.  

My Passion

I have a special interest in unusual and complex, "first-time" situations.  For example, I led the people strategy for a new manufacturing facility on the Antwerp harbor   requiring a highly skilled, self directed workforce.  The result I delivered was the first all white collar workforce in the history of the harbor, which exceeded productivity goals and delayed the formation of a works council for several years.

What Else?

I love what I do and can't imagine doing anything else. Some of my early influences are Herb Shepard, Elsie Cross, Bob Eichinger and Elliot Jacques. My current work often draws ideas from the work of David Cooperrider on Appreciative Inquiry and Gestalt Theory.  I also have been trained in Lean Six Sigma at the yellow belt level. 

Why the name "Rule6"?

One of Herb Shepard's early writings was titled "Rules of Thumb for Change Agents".  There are eight rules (along with a number of corollaries).  Rule 6 states,  "Light Many Fires" and it has proven true several times over my career.  One of the paradoxes for a "systems thinker" like me is that I often can see how all the pieces fit together and affect each other - yet the complexity of a holistic roadmap for change is often seen as overwhelming  - too much for most organizations to want to take on.  To loosely quote Herb,  "Large monolithic change programs tend to prevent subsystems from feeling ownership and consequent commitment to the program".    Early in my career I learned, almost by accident, that the way to achieve holistic change was to start small in a number of places.   Eventually, if you are patient and focused,  you can connect all of those small fires into one large change "fire".