James Lawley was a senior manager in the computer industry and Penny Tompkins was a partner in a business selling oil field equipment, before they met at an NLP training. They became NLP trainers, business consultants and UKCP registered psychotherapists and in 1995 they came across the work of David Grove. They were impressed by what he was doing and set about finding out how he achieved such good results.
They spent five years attending healing retreats and workshops, listening to recordings of David working with clients, studying transcripts and being clients themselves, and in 2000 published Metaphors in Mind, which contains their model of David's work, which they have called Symbolic Modelling. Their intention was to help others to be able to achieve similar results to David. As well as employing many of David's ideas, they also drew upon cognitive linguistics, self-organising systems theory, evolutionary dynamics and NLP. They have also produced a training DVD, A Strange and Strong Sensation.