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  • Sean McCormick

What is the Executive Function Specialists Process?

Our process for enhancing executive function skills is a three step process. Here it is:


Step 1: Intake Meeting


Our first step is to meet with the key stakeholders -- ideally the student, parents and any other key player in the family dynamic. The reason for this is that executive function skills do not develop in a bubble. They require the support and guidance of a community.


During this meeting, you will be asked the following questions:


If we were to work together, what would have happened in 3-6 months for you to feel that working with us was a great investment?


How would you feel if the goals above were accomplished?


What is getting in the way of those goals being reached?


What other resources do you have available to help you reach the goals above (coaches, tutors, mental health supports, etc)?


What other resources do you have available to help you reach the goals above (coaches, tutors, mental health supports, etc)?


These questions are essential to help you generate solutions to the problems you are facing. It is our job to hold you accountable for the solutions that you know will bring about change and resolution.


Step 2: Assessment Meeting


The next step is for our assessment professional to meet with the client of focus and identify their existing skill set. Executive function skills stretch across a range of competencies and so we will like to look at key areas that permit for success in school, at home and in the workplace. These areas include:

  • Prioritization

  • Has a system for prioritizing emails


  • Communication

  • Knows how to ask for extended time or an extension on projects and homework

  • Knows appropriate email communication format

  • Knows to reply within two days to all formal emails

  • Knows to reply within 24 hours to all text messages

  • Can send a picture through the phone


  • Planning

  • Can schedule an item in Google Calendar with Zoom link

  • Has a system to track To Do's

  • Uses a calendar to track upcoming important dates and events


  • Task-Initiation

  • Can set alarms on phone to remind them to do tasks

  • Knows how to set external reminders


  • Performance

  • Knows how to create an error log and monitor progress toward a goal


  • Self Regulation

  • Can identify things that bring them joy


This is not an all encompassing list, however, assessing these skills helps us tune our support process to ensure the client has the best possible chance of meeting the goals they have articulated.


Step 3: Weekly Executive Function Coaching


Following the intake and assessment process, we begin the deep work of weekly coaching to help our clients develop the necessary skills to strengthen their executive functions. This support generally takes the form of identifying what priorities feel most challenging based on our solution-focused questioning process, and teaching prerequisite skills to gain new skills at the point of performance, as articulated by Dr. Russell Barkley.