Our primary research hypotheses for our partnerships with the SC Johnson School of Management at Cornell University and the College of Business at the University of Denver are based on existing trends and studies:

  • Everyone is a leader
  • Compassion fuels positive change
  • Purpose-driven leaders and organizations outperform others
  • Learning and performance are maximized when you integrate curriculum, coaching and contemplative practices
  • The Donnellan Methods accelerate growth and change

In our exploration of compassion, we are using these working definitions:

Compassion: sympathetic consciousness of others’ distress together with a desire to prevent or to alleviate it

Empathy: the ability to understand and share the feelings of another

Sympathy: feelings of pity and sorrow for someone else’s misfortune

Here are some highlights of recent research related to compassion:

  • Companies with purpose & corporate social responsibility outperform S&P 500 peers by 8X *
  • 88% of millennials look for employers with corporate social responsibility values *
  • Compassion positively impacts productivity, employee and customer retention, profitability, and financial performance **
  • Compassion supports strategic advantage in innovation, service quality, collaboration, retaining talented people, employee and customer engagement, and adaptability to change **
  • 91% of leaders surveyed say compassion is very important for leadership and 80% say they want to enhance their compassion but don’t know how ***
  • While empathy can lead to fatigue, compassion can increase our resilience and improve our approach to stressful situations****

* Deloitte: The Rise of Social Enterprise, 2018

** Awakening Compassion at Work: The Quiet Power that Elevates People and Organizations by Monica C. Worline and Jane E. Dutton, 2017

*** Harvard Business Review: Power Can Corrupt Leaders, Compassion Can Save Them, February, 2018

****Greater Good Science Center, UC Berkeley, 2019


The future belongs to those that believe in their dreams.”  – Eleanor Roosevelt

Since 1990, we have been developing and delivering career and leadership development programs for high school and college students in schools and other institutions including Cornell University, The Taos Pueblo, Norwalk High School, NYC Public Schools and Teen Omega Camp.

A cornerstone of our method is to have students clarify their dreams by creating a tangible project related to it, such as a playbill featuring a student in her future, a journal to remind him to follow his heart, a mixed media art piece, a business plan, or a slide show set to music. The participants also created videos about their experience with our method.

Dream Books – Fosters innovation and entrepreneurship for Kids

Dream First – Provides the path to remarkable work for Teens:
Dream First is all about helping young people imagine and attain their best futures by connecting their dreams to a practical plan for success.

Dream Big – Develops leadership skills for Young Adults:
At Dream Big, college-age students and young aspiring professionals clarify and articulate a personal career dream by evaluating their strengths, learning about career opportunities, and completing creative and goal setting projects. These programs combine the curriculum with coaching to foster self-esteem in each participant while expanding possibilities and initiating a practical plan for how to achieve goals.

Dream Again – Provides programs tailored to accomplished individuals who want to pass the wealth of their own experience to those just starting out. Dream Again gives you our proven methodology and tools to be an effective mentor.

Why do young people need more tools and knowledge about their career and direction today? Good work is hard to find and a bigger challenge to keep than ever before. Recent statistics show these trends:

  • 70% of the US workforce is disengaged
  • The workforce freelance workers/entrepreneurs is 35 % of the workforce and is rising.
  • According to the Bureau of labor statistics, the average worker currently holds ten different jobs before age forty and this number is projected to grow
  • Forrester research predicts that today’s youngest workers will hold twelve to fifteen jobs in their lifetime
  • 9.1 percent of 16- to 24-year-olds are out of work, compared to 3.7% of all Americans

Thriving in the new economy takes more than a diploma or degree; it takes a combination of motivation, direction, and connection. Our education programs are a catalyst to future success.

Students clarify and articulate a personal career dream based on a study of their strengths, learn about career opportunities, and complete creative and goal setting projects. These programs combine curriculum with coaching to foster engagement and self-esteem. Students are put in line for future success by developing a stronger commitment to do their best work at school, home, in their jobs and in their communities.

The benefits are measurable and long lasting for students, and yield a great return on the investment of time and tuition for administrators and parents.

Students will:

  • Develop a plan to gain skills employers are looking for
  • Gain a better understanding of how their current attitudes, behaviors, and school performance affect their future
  • Complete a project that puts career aspirations into focus, can be shared with parents or guardians and can be used to strengthen education or employment portfolios
  • Expand their perception of career and workplace to include concepts like entrepreneurship, traditional for-profit and not-for-profit jobs, virtual jobs, freelancing, jobs requiring travel, and the jobs of the future economy


  • We provide Scholarship Slots on all our group programs – 10% of enrollment is reserved for scholarships
  • We participate in community impact programs including contributing to:
    • Slow Food Shinnecock (Local Project)
    • Global Girls Alliance, Obama Foundation (Global Project)


Find books by our founder, Laurel Donnellan at Amazon, our team’s posts about Compassionate Leadership at and hear an NPR feature on one of our community projects here:

Schedule a soul session today to explore options for you or your organization.