a long career as a Creative Director of five multinational ad agencies
on four continents, Dennis co-founded Miller Myers Bruce DallaCosta, a
Toronto ad agency with a reputation for
For the past 18 years, he has devoted his energies to Creative Planning, a discipline based on the British Account Planning model which combines creativity and qualitative research.
In applying Creative Planning to many clients' businesses, Dennis has moderated thousands of focus groups and acquired insights that have led to many new product launches and dramatic business gains for such clients as Canadian Bankers Association, CBC Television and Radio (including the launch of CBC Newsworld), Canadian Gas Association, London Life (Freedom 55), Mercedes-Benz, Procter & Gamble, Pfizer Warner-Lambert, RadioShack, Telecom Canada, Volkswagen, and many others.
In rounding out his planning expertise, Dennis has trained as a focus group moderator at the Burke Institute in Cincinnati, Ohio. He has also undergone Synectics training at the Synectics Institute in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Dennis has addressed industry organizations such as ICA, ACA and CMA on the subject of creative planning and also lectured at colleges and universities including Queen's, York and Wilfrid Laurier. As a frequent contributor, he writes articles on the subject for Marketing Magazine.
Over the years, Dennis' efforts have helped sell products and services in almost every conceivable category and earned him over 300 national and international awards.
Mindset is a corporate member of the Market Research Intelligence Association (MRIA).
Margaret is a qualitative researcher and creative planner with a wide range of client experience in packaged goods, financial services, telecommunications, automobiles and government services.
graduating from Queen's University with a degree in psychology,
began her career in 1989 at Toronto advertising agency Miller Myers Bruce
DallaCosta, as an associate creative planner. From 1992 to 1995 Margaret
lived and worked in Vancouver, where she consulted with a number of local
agencies such as Lanyon Phillips
returned to Toronto to join Mindset as a partner. She has contributed
to the development of products, packaging, and communications programs
for clients such as Chrysler Canada, CIBC, Clarica, H.J. Heinz Company,
Johnson & Johnson, Microsoft, Pepsico,
Advertising has long been a passion of Margaret's. She has an intuitive grasp of the creative process. Leading focus groups, probing for hidden meanings, discovering insights and contributing to successful advertising campaigns are what she does best. Margaret also understands that the job of advertising is to break through consumer resistance with fresh thinking and build strong brand equity.
Joanne bolsters the Mindset team with her extensive experience in health-care and group work.
Her background as a hospital social worker with people suffering from chronic and lifethreatening illnesses has given her a deep familiarity with the struggles of patients, families and health care providers. Her direct practice has involved work in the areas of cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, neurological disorders, chronic pain and arthritis.
As a group moderator, Joanne has led over a thousand groups in the hospital sector. Equally at home with physicians, health-care workers, academics, pharmacists and patients, Joanne possesses a sympathetic ear and a sharp analytical mind. Additional research interests include quality of life and ageing.
She has presented her work internationally, and has published widely in peer-reviewed journals.
Joanne's combined expertise in health care, social service, research and group work provides Mindset clients with a unique perspective on their creative planning solutions.
Larry's contribution to Mindset is a unique mix of skills and experiences. His theological studies, combined with his background as a newspaper reporter, writer and researcher has given him an unusual understanding of the needs and aspirations of people.
Blessed with irrepressible curiosity (especially when it comes to human needs and motivations) and a disarming personal style, Larry is able, in interviews and focus groups, to get people to tell him things they would only share with their closest friends. His ability to empathize leads to fresh insights, and his grasp of what motivates people allows him to hear the meaning behind their comments. His skills shine in situations where observations and impressions must be combined and evaluated for their true significance to emerge.
Ever ready to share his insights and opinions, he has served on a variety of not-for-profit boards and committees. For six years, he led the overseas relief program of a Canadian charitable organization including managing government relations, consulting with NGOs and creating education and communications strategies.
With significant experience in one-on-one interviews and group research, and talents in communication strategy, planning and writing, Larry is ideally suited to the Mindset team and well positioned to make a strong contribution to the success of Mindset's clients.
Paul has spent all of his professional life studying the interrelationships between the organization, its products and its target groups.
Specializing in qualitative research and in marketing strategy, he has conducted hundreds of focus groups on a wide spectrum of topics including consumer behaviour, product perception, positioning analysis, the purchase process, attitudes towards social and political issues, policy evaluation, and the multiple facets of communications such as motivational factors, responses to communications platforms and message evaluation.
Paul has conducted projects for such companies as Bell Canada, Teleglobe, Abbot Laboratories, Toyota, General Motors, Inglis, Simmons Mattresses, Pepsi, The Caisses Populaires, the Royal Bank, the Laurentian Bank, Canadian Tire, Federal Express, Heinz, etc.
He has also carried out projects for departments of the Government of Canada including Agriculture Canada, Development of Human Resources Canada, Health Canada, Justice Canada, the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency, Farm Credit Corporation, the Canada Information Office, Canada Post Corporation, the Canadian Coast Guard, etc.
Paul wrote the chapter on focus groups in the book titled "Recherche Sociale" published by the Presses de l'Universite du Quebec, 1997.
Fully bilingual, Paul has an MBA from York University in Toronto and has spent most of his professional life in Montreal. He has carried out projects across Canada and the United States in both French and English.