Our Story. Your Consultancy.

The story of our consultancy, in the words of our founder- Karan Ferrell-Rhodes

Why this type of consultancy?  In my 18+ years as a corporate executive leading Leadership Development, Organizational Development and Human Resources teams, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to build the capability of individuals and organizations to achieve big, audacious goals. From both industry research and my own person experiences (and missteps), I have discovered 4 universal facts:


    • Workplace dynamics makes it hard for even the brightest employee talent to “dream big & get things done”.
    • The right talent development approaches beats a “training program” any day.
    • Executive leaders struggle to gain deep visibility into the true capability and readiness of their organizational talent.
    • Even accomplished leaders and the HR functions that support them have times when external expertise and support is critical to execution.

Believe me, I’ve been in your shoes.  I know how complex developing your people, getting the best out of them, and mobilizing your organization to support your latest “people” initiative can be.

And during those times when you’re able to secure a bit of budget to bring in some short-term expertise to help out, we ask ourselves the million-dollar question:
                                    “Who can I get to assist us?”

It can be overwhelming to find the perfect consultant, especially when your own professional reputation is on the line.

                                    So, what do we all do?

We start calling up colleagues, crossing our fingers that they have a referral to share.

We fear and avoid posting on online freelance websites, because who has time to screen the 50K un-vetted profiles which flood our email?

And worse of all, we dread having to inform our team of the real possibility that we’ll have to work 60-hour work weeks for months, doing everything ourselves.

What if there was a better way? 
>> I started this firm to answer that very question.

The Way We Partner.


I decided to build the kind of support consultancy that colleagues were asking for and that I wished had existed during my corporate career – a true trusted vendor partner focused on providing:

Our clients love an accountable single point of contact, and I LOVE playing that role.  You need a trusted partner that you can have on speed dial and with whom you can “keep it real”.  I know the importance of helping you navigate and please your stakeholders.  In fact, many of my established clients text me with their next project and we jump on the phone within minutes to discuss!  And we celebrate our successes together over a coffee or cocktail!


Agility is our middle name.  One of SDL’s differentiating factors is that we “meet you where you are” in your stage of implementation. Don’t yet have all the details?  Initiative still a bit “messy”?  Don’t have all the pieces in place?  No problem – we’re not fazed and thrive in “going with the flow”.  We’ll figure it out together.


SDL provides our clients the the ability to tap into their choice of our pool of consultants and experts with whom I have worked with side-by-side for numerous years.  I can personally vouch for everyone on my team, and stake my reputation on it!  Can you get that from an online platform, database, or talent marketplace?


As a mid-sized boutique consultancy, we don’t have the overhead of the big firms, but we also don’t lack of resources of many solopreneurs.  We are not the most expensive in the market, nor are we the cheapest.  We pride ourselves both on being both market-competitive as well as innovative in how we can meet your budget – big or small.  Not sure if you can afford us?  Just ask.


Yes, the devil is in the details, but we’ve got your back!  Our operations team will work with your team to ensure all particulars like contracts, processes, payments, logistics and materials are quickly completed. My “fire in the belly” was to build a consultancy that helped top talent and their organizations become ready to “take the reigns”, be a part of something big and lead incredible initiatives. It was also important to ensure they had an “on-call” partner to help them navigate and execute the very projects that would enchant both them and their organizations.


And I hand-picked a feisty group of experts, who had the same conviction, to join the firm – and thus Shockingly Different Leadership was born.  Okay, enough about us.   Time to focus on you!  


“We have partnered with clients across the globe to build their own internal army of leaders who are tackling hairy challenges and big, bold goals.   My passion is in turning potential into reality and providing expert support for those during their journey.”

– Karan Ferrell-Rhodes

Karan Ferrell-Rhodes

Karan Ferrell-Rhodes

CEO + Founder



Shockingly Different Leadership is a human capital professional services consultancy that provides organizations access to the best consulting expertise in the areas of Talent Development, Organizational Development, and Human Resources – on an on-demand, project, or contract basis.


4480-H South Cobb Drive
PMB 219
Smyrna, GA 30080


2121 NewMarket Parkway
Ste. 108
Marietta, GA 30067


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#Office Hours

8:30 AM – 6:30 PM
Weekends By Appointment