the business

what we offer

  • brand strategy

    brand strategy

    Visioning
    Brand ID
    Architecture
    Communication Platform
  • innovation

    innovation

    Strategic Platforms
    Ideation
    Concept Writing
    Claims Articulation
  • business planning

    business planning

    Precise Key Issue Articulation
    Support Plan Development
    Tactical Ideation
  • meeting facilitation

    meeting facilitation

    Objective Setting
    Agenda Design
    Action Planning

how we do it

  • workshop based

    workshop based

    Co-creation sessions designed to deliver actionable outputs
  • behind the curtain

    behind the curtain

    We work on the assignment with your involvement at key points throughout the process

types of workshops

sparkSHOP

igniting institutional knowledge

Collective imagining, insight mining & creation with a cast of internal players, including agency partners

sparkTANK

leveraging fresh perspectives

Collective imagining, insight mining & creation with carefully curated brilliant brains across categories and industries

sparkMIX

a brilliant blend of both

Collective imagining, insight mining & creation with internal and external participants

the team

the right collection of the right people coming together makes the magic happen – every single time.

 

When you hire catalystspark you always get me, Josette Barenholtz.

Beyond that, I build the team to best suit your needs.  I pull from a vast network of industry leading creative directors, graphic designers, innovative thinkers, subject matter experts, creative consumers, PhDs, MDs and the list goes on.

A little more about myself and some of the amazing people I often work with:

josette barenholtz

Josette read Adam’s bio below, and agrees that bios in the third person are kinda silly...

I enjoyed a 14 year marketing career managing big global brands. My passion has always been in the creative and strategic parts of my work. My disdain has always been in watching people revert to ‘business as usual’ (yes…the shoulds). I thrive on imagining and creating the possibilities. I am so fortunate to be able to make this the the central focus of my career. I started catalystspark 7 years ago, and it's been a thrill watching it grow, and constantly evolving our offers and methodologies.

Beyond my deep understanding of brands, innovation and people, I have been called a Master Workshop Designer and Facilitator.

I have a BS and an MBA from the NYU Stern School of Business.

I am a through and through New Yorker, having lived in four out of the five boroughs of New York City. I currently live in Manhattan.

I am crazy about theater, yoga and boxing, but the force that drives me above all else, is mothering my two daughters, Carlyn and Darah.

adam schorr

Adam has no idea why people write bios about themselves in the third person. So I’m going to just address you directly. It might sound less fancy but it’s a lot more personal. Let me know what you think.

After 16+ years as a consultant, marketer, and innovation practitioner, I went out on my own and am dedicated to helping companies be the best version possible of themselves—living their unique purpose and values in their culture and in the market. This is the perspective I bring to my work with catalystspark.

My recent consulting has focused on the intersection of brand and culture—helping companies create distinctive brands and fully activate their people to bring those brands to life. I’ve partnered with senior executives at leading companies such as IBM, Hyatt, JetBlue, Celgene, and MetLife, to codify company purpose, values, behaviors, and vision; define brand identity and strategy; design leadership development and workforce engagement programs; and shift mindsets and behaviors to fuel brand, culture and performance.

I began my career at McKinsey & Company, consulting on strategy and organizational change. I worked at Pfizer as a brand manager on Sudafed, Listerine, and Efferdent, and at J&J to build a new innovation capability and unlock non-traditional revenue streams. I’ve got a BA in Speech & Drama from Yeshiva University, and a PhD in Psychology from the University of Chicago.

In addition to my professional passions, I am an avid craft beer lover, home brewer, father of three, and I enjoy some quiet reading time when I can get it.

annabel acton

Annabel Acton (Bella) is an innovation addict and entrepreneur on a quest to keep it quirky. And to that end will also now move into the first person...

I have worked as a brand, marketing and innovation consultant for 10 years. I have partnered with some of the world’s largest companies; helping to reinvent their brands, shape their innovation pipelines and shake up their company culture. I love challenging conventions, questioning things and scouring for inspiration – and am still a little surprised that I've made a career out of it. Melbourne, Sydney, London, New York and LA are all homes of sorts, and with 60 countries under my belt, I bring a global perspective to my thinking.

I am an entrepreneur and the founder & CEO of the quirky company Never Liked It Anyway – a place to sell all things you’re left with at the end of a relationship (yes, seriously). I'm highly involved in the startup scene and help early stage companies sharpen their vision, articulate their business plan and attract investment. I also write for Huffington Post, Forbes, Inc. and more, about all these things. I am at my best with a flipchart, sharpies and a room full of strangers.

I would do anything for gelato and also love haiku, rock climbing and dogs. Not in that order.

jon minor

Jon supports catalystspark in a number of roles – overseeing critical elements of our events with seasoned expertise, efficiency, and flexibility. He applies high-level organization and management to each project, contributing creativity to solutions within parameters.

As project manager, he specializes in creating positive, productive relationships with participants. His problem-solving and negotiation talents along with the ability to handle a variety of assignments concurrently make him an agile team member. He also assists in transcribing key notes and ideas into accurate and professional end-documentation.

After spending time in Milwaukee, San Francisco and Brooklyn, he's happy as hell to be back on the West Coast living in Portland - taking in the sights and sounds of the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

Jon doesn't have an issue with writing about himself in the third person.

  • By far one of the most strategic thinkers I have worked with. And importantly, her ability alone to organize and frame significant amounts of learnings, synthesizing to digestible key themes and insights provides valuable competitive advantage. A seamless team member. Excellent client-facing to internal executive management. A delight to work with. Highly highly recommend.

    Pamela StewartPamela StewartDirector, Shire Global Market Research
  • "Always work with people who are smarter than you" was great advice I was given years ago. And no one is a better example of the benefits of that approach than Josette. She brings tremendous insights to each project - balancing innovative thinking with understanding the pragmatics of business. Her presentations are smart, crisp and inspiring. Hire her!

    Jane GundellJane GundellFounder, Gundell and Company
  • Her workshops are engaging from the moment you enter the room, and fruitful to the very end. Her ability to connect seemingly unrelated dots and identify themes is magical. She is a master facilitator and an idea machine. She leads us to more actionable ideas than we could have imagined, and stayed on to take them all the way through to qual and quant testing. An amazing partner and so much fun!

    Stephanie BerezStephanie BerezGroup Product Manager, Trojan Global New Products Innovation

great! but what have you worked on?

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