The Ngamuru Service Design Practice – Behzad Emami

Knowing me, Knowing you – Welcome Behzad Emami

It should be obvious to everyone now, but it still needs to be said – people are what matters most in any business. No ifs or buts – great people produce great outcomes.

Ngamuru Advisory wouldn’t be the successful trusted strategic advisor it is today without the efforts of our amazing people.

Each of these passionate, highly talented people have their own unique stories and as part of an ongoing series, we’d like to share some of them with you.

In this instalment we are sharing the story of Behzad Emami from our Service Design Practice.

Behzad Emami of the Ngamuru Service Design Practice
Who is Behzad Emami?

Behzad Emami is a Senior Advisor and Business & Marketing Strategist for the Ngamuru Service Design Practice.

Behzad has had a varied career that has seen him perform a range of specialist, leadership and advisory roles within naval ship building, aviation regulation, environmental contamination management, leadership coaching, technology strategy & architecture; digital marketing, and consulting just to name a few. Despite this diversity, Behzad is continually drawn to roles involving the development and execution of strategies where he can utilise his strong analytical and leadership skills to drive outcomes.

Between work and juggling a young family of three with his wife, Behzad enjoys bushwalking and photography and when he gets a moment to himself, he is a big basketball and soccer fan.

What passions drive you?

Growing up, Behzad was one of those kids who would pull his toys apart and “try” to put them back together … every family has one!

He may not have realised it at the time, but his initial poor efforts were a formative lesson in ‘cause and effect’ both in terms of having a lack of functional toys and drawing the ire of his parents.

Fast forward and Behzad’s interest in team sports, video games and nature led him to study and work as a systems engineer which built his understanding and skills in systems thinking.

As illustrated by an example where Behzad managed to play to the competitive rivalries between different engineering teams to rapidly close out long standing items from a technical issues log, Behzad firmly believes that in order to solve problems in often complex contexts, you must first understand the structures, relationships, actors and other interrelated components that make up the prevailing systems.

This interest led Behzad to pursue further management and business studies where he complemented his more technical skills with strategy and business operations knowledge.

Deep down, Behzad is a passionate problem solver who loves to learn. No matter the context or industry, Behzad is drawn to novel challenges where he can analyse and understand the contextual and operating environment in order to shape, develop and implement fit-for-purpose strategies.

This is reflected in Behzad’s career where his diverse roles moving from technical management to stakeholder engagement, organisational capability development, leadership coaching, digital marketing and consulting all have provided Behzad with new and different opportunities to refine his strategic toolkit but more importantly, make meaningful improvement for organisations, teams and individuals alike.

Describe your journey to Ngamuru Advisory?

As mentioned, Behzad has had a varied career across a number of different roles and industries.

Behzad’s first real professional job was as a patent examiner … Behzad assures us that this was nowhere near as exciting as he first thought!

From there, the majority of Behzad’s early career was spent within the Department of Defence working in engineering, industry and project delivery roles to support Australia’s naval ship building capability.

During these formative years, there were numerous instances where the answer to particular business problems weren’t always the straightforward technical approach. It’s here where Behzad realised that organisations are sociotechnical systems whereby both social and technical aspects need to be tackled together to drive change.

After commencing his MBA studies an opportunity arose and Behzad accepted a role as a business designer for a Canberra-based design consultancy firm. During this time, Behzad complemented his studies with practical projects where he helped organisations improve through business process reengineering and the application of design thinking.

Following the completion of MBA in 2012, Behzad joined Airservices Australia. Over the next 9 years, Behzad held a number of senior specialist, management and senior leadership roles across regulatory compliance and analysis, contamination management, technology strategy & architecture and service strategy. In each instance, Behzad identified opportunities, overcame roadblocks (both internal and external) to embed sustainable organisational change through a pragmatic service and customer centric led approach to co-design and leadership.

With the advent of the pandemic and the aviation industry still reeling from the ongoing effects of the Australian bushfires, Behzad took up a new challenge as a freelance business and marketing strategic advisor. He applied his services for an e-learning international joint venture and a social media based publishing product launch and community management. These were exciting times for Behzad as he had to provide rapid analysis and advice for business growth and operations in the dynamic start up environment.

Behzad’s interest in solving diverse and complex challenges led him to PwC Consulting Australia as a Senior Manager within the Transformation Design and Delivery practice. During this period Behzad led delivery works for a range of Federal Government agencies including a data scoping study to realise transformational policies in the early childhood learning sector within a complex cross-jurisdictional environment; and establishing an organisational ICT transformation roadmap in support of second pass business case development works within the Environment portfolio. In addition to delivering these large-scale initiatives, Behzad was able to work closely with individuals and teams to developed sustainable improvement at all levels.

In 2022, Behzad reconnected with his long-time collaborator @Justin Barrie and joined Ngamuru Advisory to establish the Ngamuru Service Design Practice. He was drawn to the exciting opportunity to design, build and grow a new practice, combined with Ngamuru’s strong organisational cultural and commitment to supporting the public service in solving challenging problems.

What accomplishments are you most proud of?

Whilst he says it didn’t feel like it at the time, Behzad’s biggest achievements related to situations when his work lead to the establishment of high performing teams and individuals.

As program lead for Airservices legacy contamination management response, Behzad was accountable for developing an organisational response strategy and mobilising all enabling capabilities to delivery the agreed outcomes. This work covered the breadth of technical, media & communications, legal, financial, policy works within a complex and ambiguous intra-governmental context. Requiring constant use of both strategic and tactical lenses, Behzad was ultimately successful in turning around a reactive adhoc organisational approach into a proactive strategic aligned program of work. In addition, Behzad takes extreme pride in managing and coaching a somewhat despondent and close to burnt-out group of specialists and transforming them into an engaged and continually high performing team.

Behzad is also quite proud of his accomplishment to drive a service-led, customer-centric approach to designing, planning and implementing the development of critical organisational capability through the establishment of Airservices Technology Strategy & Architecture capability. With more of a focus on internal organisational change, Behzad’s leadership and management efforts resulted in delivering on a roadmap to sustainably develop architectural capability critical in improving Airservices business & technical operations.

On a personal level, observing current and potential leaders change from unsure and often frustrated to empowered and confident through his professional coaching works continues to provide Behzad with a lot of personal satisfaction.

Something not many people know about you?

Behzad enjoys distracting his children with his double-jointed elbows particularly when trying to snap a candid photo of them.

People should contact you if they …?

Behzad is passionate about business strategy and marketing and is always happy to discuss what it means and the potential opportunities at an organisational, team and individual level. He is focused at Ngamuru on connecting strategy and service design.

He is especially interested in how a strategic approach can drive and deliver outcomes whilst also re-invigorating and empower organisational capability.

If you want to find out more or discuss a specific challenge you may have then please reach out to Behzad via email, LinkedIn or contact the Ngamuru Service Design Practice (link).