Our vision is simple; fulfilled people doing inspiring work in successful organisations

We’re driven by our belief that work can be better - that people can be more fulfilled, teams can be more collaborative & creative, and organisations can do extraordinary things that positively impact the world. The possibility of such a world provides the energy that fuels our work.

Distillation requires raw materials, carefully designed processes, calibrated heat, removal of superfluous material, and time. What emerges is the essence of the thing, which becomes the core ingredient of the new product. We think it’s a pretty good metaphor for our work.

Distillery was founded by Michael Henderson and Jeremy Timm. Between them they have over 40 years experience improving organisational effectiveness in the public, private and development sectors. Jeremy and Michael worked together at National Treasury, where they have a combined 20 years experience.

The following principles guide how we work.

Our team

Michael Henderson


Michael spent the first 10 years of his career in the private sector, working in the UK and Southeast Asia before returning to South Africa to pursue an interest in psychology. He decided not to complete his clinical training, but human behaviour – and the forces that guide and shape it – remains his principal interest. He worked on organisational development projects for an oil major and retail organisations, before joining National Treasury, where he worked for 8 years before leaving to establish Distillery. He lives in Cape Town and is currently writing a novel.

Jeremy Timm


Jeremy is fascinated by the human condition and the multifaceted ways in which humans engage with each other. He trained as a city and regional planner, cut his teeth in local government, and has spent much of his career exploring the factors that get in the way of great plans being implemented. He loves looking at issues from different attitudes and altitudes. He’s worked for, and consulted to, all three spheres of the South African public service. He lives in Johannesburg, though a large part of his heart is in the Eastern Cape.

Kamogelo Maema

Junior consultant

Kamogelo is a vibrant individual who brings enthusiasm and passion to his work. He studied Bachelor of Arts with majors in Human Geography & Anthropology, after which he pursued an Honours in Environmental studies. He is fascinated by the social production of space and how human beings interact and experience the complexities that come with different spaces. Prior to joining Distillery, he worked as a GIS Analyst with Housing Development Agency, and a SHEQ intern with GladAfrica. As a junior consultant, he is focused on human behaviour interventions to improve organizational effectiveness. Kamogelo lives in Mabopane, a township outside Pretoria and enjoys watching his favourite movies and series.

Our associates

Geoff Bickford

Facilitator, Storyteller, Urban Development Specialist

Geoff is a design thinker committed to the development of people, organisations and communities. He’s passionate about placing people at the centre of his work and empowering collective action in the pursuit of positive change. Geoff spent 7 years at the South African Cities Network, using his ability to creatively facilitate engagement across disparate groups to lead research programmes and manage high profile programmes. When he’s not working in front of a group, Geoff is a dad, a writer, a creator of children’s stories, and once coached a school water polo team to top spot on the national rankings.

Kubeshni Govender

Facilitator, Coach, Knowledge Management Specialist

Kubeshni is a Knowledge, Learning and Media consultant. A media and communications professional by training, Kubeshni has over twenty years of production experience and served as a public sector communicator for ten years before specializing in knowledge management and learning. She is Chairperson of the Board of Associates of Gender Links (an NGO promoting gender equality and justice) and co-founded Each One Hold One (a rights organization focused on Women to Women support). She has a M.A. in Media Studies and is an alumnus of the International Gestalt Organisational Leadership and Development Programme. Kubeshni lives in Johannesburg and loves exploring her creative side through pottery and paint.

Nhlanhla Mncwango

Invigorator, Facilitator

Nhlanhla is a facilitator, coach and organisational intervenor, specialising in local government and intergovernmental relations. She focuses on bridging gaps within and across organisations, anchoring her relationship-building interventions in strategic objectives and leadership vision. She helps organisations resolve impasses through interpersonal connection. Nhlanlha has deep experience working both in and for the South African public sector and is committed to working towards improved service delivery. Nhlanhla lives in KwaZulu Natal Midlands and loves tapping into her creative talents by working the soil.

Chantelle Wyley

OD Facilitator, Leadership Coach

Chantelle is a coach, facilitator, trainer and adult learning specialist working in the field of program management and leadership development, using emotional intelligence and Gestalt OD. Chantelle works with leaders in the public and private sector around personal development, diversity, and how to cultivate powerful personal presence and resonant relationships. She has published several articles, is on the faculty of an international leadership development programme, has taught on coach training programs of two SA business schools, and is committed to utilising her experience to further South Africa’s transformation. Chantelle lives in Cape Town and Berlin (but prefers the one with a view of the sea).

Fezeka Hlophe​


Fezeka is an ardent student of human relations and understanding what motivates human behaviour. Her interest in the dynamic nature of relationships led her to an Honours degree in Psychology from Wits, and also to support non profit centres caring for children and the elderly. She trained as a Junior Instructor at the Star Academy, equipping her for the challenging role of working with autistic children. In the Junior Consultant position, Fezeka brings analytical rigour and a calm demeanour to complex client situations. Fezeka lives in Johannesburg, is the first of three children, and enjoys spending time with her family and immersing herself in music.

Cortney Cahill

Coach, Trainer, OD

Cortney is an organization development coach and consultant focused on developing leaders and their teams to drive business results through organizational alignment and strategic initiatives. She specializes in working with established leaders and teams to develop their emotional intelligence around all aspects of business performance. Cortney’s style builds on client’s strengths while providing direct and clear feedback on key areas for development.

Our clients


Jeremy and Michael have a unique way of empowering the people around them without creating dependency. No matter how complex the situation, they get to the heart of the matter with care, creativity, and good humor.

Paul Cooper, President of Face to Face Strategies, Inc

Learn more about what we do