We are Reflective Performance

Our founding team worked together previously in other businesses and came to appreciate each other’s skills and how they could be applied to transform the workforce in terms of how people are managed within organizations to Unlock Human Potential in the context of greater Organizational Productivity.  The solution lies in applying proven System Change methods with rigorous Scientific Research into the causal factors underlying Human-centered Productivity and Well-being.

photo of John Carlson

John G. Carlson, CEO

John Carlson (no relation to Stephanie M. Carlson), has spent over 30 years in leadership positions as CEO, COO, CFO, and program manager of corporate turnarounds and industry-wide “system change” initiatives resulting in transformative operational and financial improvement. These successes were grounded in data-driven quality improvement methods applied early in his career.


John’s breakthrough is in the prioritization of people as critical assets that drive performance improvement and sustainability.  He is a leader in applying Executive Function and Reflective Thinking to enterprise Systems Analysis resulting in more humane more profitable companies. 

photo of Stephanie Carlson, Ph.D.

Stephanie Carlson, PhD, Science Advisor

As a Professor at the University of Minnesota, Stephanie conducts research on the measurement and development of executive function skills. At Reflective Performance she leads the discovery of new connections between neuroscience-based assessments and business performance. Stephanie is also co-founder of Reflection Sciences, Inc., which provides executive function assessment and solutions for young students.

Stephanie is a graduate of Bucknell University and got her PhD in experimental psychology at the University of Oregon. She lives with her partner Phil Zelazo in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and has two grown daughters.

Photo of Phil Zelazo, Ph.D.

Philip David Zelazo, PhD, Research Advisor

Phil received his PhD (with distinction) from Yale in 1993 and was Canada Research Chair in Developmental Neuroscience at the University of Toronto before becoming the Lindahl Professor at the Institute of Child Development, University of Minnesota. His research has shaped scientific understanding of the development and neural correlates of executive function skills as well as how to measure and promote these skills across the lifespan. He lives with his partner, Stephanie Carlson, in St. Paul, MN.

Headshot of Nicholas Pollard

Nicholas Pollard, MBA, CFO

Nick has extensive experience in managing the corporate finance, legal structuring, contract negotiation, budget planning, human resources, and strategic partnerships processes for several companies. Previously he served as a management consultant, helping develop business plans, budgets, and investor presentations that were used to raise investment capital, negotiate strategic partnerships, and secure early customers. 

He has an MBA from the Boston University Questrom School of Business, and a BA from Hobart & William Smith Colleges.  He lives with his wife, two daughters and two Westies in Newburyport, Massachusetts.