About May Bleeker-Phelan
Creative Career Development Coach

11 June 2021

May Bleeker-Phelan portrait photoMay Bleeker-Phelan

Individual Career Development: I work with people to deepen insight, clarify goals, and identify obstacles to progression. As a thinking partner, I facilitate growth in understanding and the confidence to take next steps. 

Team Work: I work with organisations and teams to enhance happy and productive team dynamics. Psychometric Assessment tools are used to identify personality styles, preferred team roles and potential development areas. Group and individual insight sessions aim to strengthen team cohesion and productivity.

Assessment for Selection: I support companies in ensuring the candidates they select are a good fit for their intended roles and/or have the required attributes to develop into those roles. Assessment insights facilitate onboarding, giving new appointees a head start in terms of integrating into the team and gaining necessary skills for success in their role. 

Executive Career Development: I work with middle-to-senior management to strengthen leadership, communication, self-management and interpersonal skills in order to enhance their career growth and success. 

My Approach

My focus is on assisting people to find meaning and enjoyment in their work. This often involves working to

  • clarify desired outcomes
  • manage or surpass barriers
  • integrate what is 'out of place', disjointed or feels like it 'doesn't fit'  

We do this through a combination of conversation, visual methods (and assessment, if necessary).

"May is easy to talk to. She is understanding, honest and direct, which is what makes her so highly effective in career development." - Ansley, Sales & Key Account Management


As Psychometrist: Independent Practice, I am qualified to administer and interpret various Psychometric assessment questionnaires and tools, and give feedback on results. I qualified by means of a 4-year degree, completing required supervised practical hours and passing a Board Exam (Health Professions Council of South Africa: Professional Board for Psychology: Psychometry Independent Practice). 

The bulk of my work experience has been in providing assessment and career development services to companies or individuals as described above.

“May Bleeker-Phelan’s work with clients is incisive, accurate and as a result highly influential both for the individuals involved and the client business.” Sarah, MD


My personal interests lie both in expanding human capabilities and the creative arts. I have a strong creative practice involving stitching, painting, writing and making of other kinds. I have relied on this all my life for my own personal growth and development and understand the benefits.

Using the 'visual mode' can access deeper insights than are usually available through ordinary conversation.  

I also have an interest in the development of enhanced inner resources for decision-making and judgment, since this is what made a decisive difference to my own career contentment.

I enjoy using all my skills and abilities to support others through their own growth and change.

“May was able to help individual participants recognise their impact on others, build their self awareness and set effective and focussed developmental goals to make changes.” - Tom, MD

Logic, Intuition & the use of Psychometrics

Working as Psychometrist for many years has given me ample opportunity to test and discover the usefulness of psychometric tools.

These are the accepted, standardised methods for assessing human characteristics and potential, particularly where speed-to-insight is important. Like all tools they have limitations. The skill of the user very much determines the quality of the outcome.

Where they are needed, I use them to establish a baseline of information from which to work. This forms a starting point and useful backdrop for the development conversation.

I also use my own visual and intuitive methods to complement the above.

Why the name TidalShine?

Life (and careers) involve cycles of change. Water and tides offer a useful analogy for these cycles. Sometimes your tide comes in, sometimes it goes out. You have to adapt and keep on sailing.

Knowing what your preferences and strengths are, and having good self-management skills helps you adapt. Without this insight you have no ‘map’. Without the self-management you have no accelerator, gearbox or brakes. (I'm really mixing my metaphors here!)

My work is about helping people understand their own style of doing things. It is also about enabling them to find their own resources to influence and change their situations. 


B.A. Honours Degree in Psychology - University of Stellenbosch

Registered Psychometrist: Independent Practice - Health Professions Council of South Africa

Register of Qualified Test Users - British Psychological Society, UK

Member of the Career Development Institute - UK

Level 3 Diploma in Art & Design - UK

I adhere to the ethical standards of both the Health Professions Council of South Africa and the UK Career Development Institute. This includes meticulous handling of data and confidentiality, and maintaining professional knowledge through Continued Professional Development activities.

mental health aware badge from Mental Health First Aid England
Career Development Institute Member badge

Work Process

I work remotely, using video and telephone conferencing. 

All coaching and feedback is conducted in English, but I am able to offer some of the Psychometric Assessments in other languages.