Who We Are
Mike is an author and strategist who specializes in operationalizing design thinking. His latest book, Idea Magnets, helps dynamic leaders to cultivate extreme creativity and innovative success throughout organizations. Mike founded The Brainzooming Group, where his customized, collaborative approach to strategy, branding, and innovation has placed him at the forefront of organizational transformation.
Brainzooming attracts cross-industry clients, including Farmers Insurance, Johnson & Johnson, HP, American Century Investments, and Sprint. Through his writing and speaking, Mike connects hundreds of thousands of people globally with the Brainzooming approach for strategic planning, branding, and content marketing.
Emma Alvarez Gibson
Director, Strategy + Creative
Emma is a writer, marketer, and creative director with a lifelong branding obsession. Her clients say that she just gets it, quickly homing in on the core of the message and determining the best method of delivery for the intended audience.
Her background includes everything from copywriting to ad creation; from photography to project management; from ad sales to press checks. She’s worked in sectors as diverse as advertising, publishing, film and television production, PR, automotive, health and wellness, and higher education. She’s fluent in Spanish, conversational in Italian, and is studying German.
Emma helped create and build out the Brainzooming brand, and in the years since, she’s continued to provide strategic input. Her experience and expertise translate to a deep knowledge of the Brainzooming brand and clientele — and more important, how to best combine the two for maximum impact and innovation.
Barb is a senior marketing executive & business growth strategist.
She has helped organizations identify, prioritize, develop and realize market growth opportunities that drive measurable change for their brands and business for over 20 years.
With a wealth of experience gleaned from both marketing agency and corporate leadership roles, she knows what it takes to unite and inspire an organization toward a common goal. Barb has facilitated visioneering, planning and strategy sessions across business, consumer and non-profit organizations of all sizes. In addition, her market research and analytics experience help drive actionable strategy, as well as lay the foundation for focused sessions and fact-based plans.
Barb’s ability to translate market insights into spot-on strategic direction using The Brainzooming Group collaborative facilitation techniques translates to innovative and highly actionable results for our clients.
Chuck has helped companies and organizations worldwide enhance their ability to solve problems and create new possibilities. He does that through his conviction of and experience with Brainzooming techniques and De Bono Thinking Systems.
Whether he’s meeting with C-level executives or truckers on a loading dock, Chuck emphasizes what works to bring fundamental changes for the better.
Prior to collaborating with Brainzooming, Chuck has been a shop floor foreman, regional sales and support manager and a Director of Marketing.
He has a Master of Arts degree in Philosophy.
Tara Baukus Mello
Brand Director, Idea Magnets
Tara has more than 25 years of experience as a writer, instructional designer, and marketing communications professional. She’s particularly adept at producing content, sharpening the focus of clients’ overall goals, and crafting the plans to achieve them. She has over 4,000 bylined articles to her credit, in media outlets like the New York Times and Woman’s Day. She has been directly involved in the creation of multiple business books and is the author of 10 non-fiction books for pre-teens.
Having been instrumental in bringing Idea Magnets: Seven Strategies for Cultivating & Attracting Creative Business Leaders to fruition, Tara now develops and oversees initiatives for extending the Idea Magnets brand into product offerings.
Tara’s personal mission is to inspire and educate. She partners with clients who share that passion, helping them with the writing, marketing and communications aspects of their businesses so they can make a difference in the world.
Barrett has extensive experience in planning, creating, and implementing advertising and promotion campaigns for both retail and business-to-business clients. He has conducted primary research for various clients, including the National Cable Television Cooperative, CommScope, H&R Block, Yellow Transportation, America’s Alfalfa, and the Radio Television News Directors Foundation.
Barrett has taught integrated marketing communications at the University of Kansas School of Journalism and Mass Communications, as well as strategic communications, consumer behavior, sales, research and writing at KU, Webster University, and Johnson County Community College. He holds a Master of Arts in Telecommunications from Michigan State University and a Bachelor of Journalism degree from the University of Missouri.
Keith was a key partner in the creation of what became The Brainzooming Group. He has worked with Fortune 500 corporations on everything from economic analysis and business intelligence to competitive and counter-intelligence, strategic planning, and M&A strategy.
He actively spends much of his time on industry assessments across manufacturing, agriculture, transportation, retail, US defense, and others.
Keith is a keynote speaker for industry associations covering topics ranging from economic trends to marketing, strategic planning, and executive motivation.
Whether you’re ready to get started or you’re simply wondering what Brainzooming can do for you, we’re happy to talk with you.