These simplified examples covering some of the work we do are described in a way that masks identification of the individuals and companies involved in order to maintain confidentiality.
They show a range of what we do, from the difficult end of the spectrum to the simpler and gentler end of the spectrum. Of course, we do a lot more than this; they just give a flavour.
...in a large departmental business unit
One departmental business unit of about 60 professional staff, within a public company of nearly 3,000 staff, had got itself into a dysfunctional state where teamworking was barely happening at all and the director of the business unit was almost exiled to his office, not wanting to come out, with a big HR caseload of problems with his staff. The company’s Deputy CEO and HR Director got us to tackle the situation, which took about one year, on and off, involving many individual confidential interviews, several facilitated group discussions about our findings, and topic groups set up to resolve each group of key issues, and mentoring/coaching support to keep things on track. Slowly, the relational ice melted, and immediately after the end-of-process review meeting held by the director, his four heads of department and other managers, he said in an email:
“Our staff meeting this morning went extremely well. Xx and Xx led discussion of the action plan and your report, which was received very well by everyone. Indeed, our meeting overran to last almost three hours as people were eager to share positive experiences and good news stories. I’ve attached a picture of the BBQ that followed the event and which has only just finished. I think you’ll agree that it is a very different atmosphere to the one you encountered a year ago.”
The Administration Manager also said, “It’s much more of a family feeling now and has exceeded the situation we had in the good old days,” and the HR Director said “I think we would all agree that the Business Unit has moved way beyond all our hopes and looks nothing like it did two years ago.”
Specific observations they made included:
Collaborative and coherent team working is very good with full and frank discussions
No HR caseload now – team tend to rely on each other and not go to HR for advice and they make common sense personal responses to issues which arise
Respect between all the staff – trust has been restored
Now attracting serious talent into the business unit
Even the formerly more ‘troublesome’ staff are considerably more ‘on-board’
Launching several exciting new projects
The heads of department are now acting as proper managers for their key areas
The business unit is now held up as an exemplar across the entire business group
It is now a vibrant department to work in
The director is now able to focus on strategic projects, relations and key developments
Personal and departmental ambition is growing
Executive coaching & development...
...for a senior leadership group of a large business
The CEO of a private company with about 1,500 staff, operating from several locations across England, wanted to improve the way he and his key directors functioned, each working at separate locations. They were already successful and worked well together, but wanted to go to the next level individually. The process took place, on and off, over a period of about a year, and began with the CEO, undertaking a 360-degree assessment of what all his key reports and chairman thought, plus undertaking several psychometric assessments to aid in the following executive coaching process. The directors had the assessments plus coaching, some opting to involve their senior teams below them and one of these additionally opting to have the ‘full works’, coaching in conjunction with our leadership and management development programme, based on the masterclasses.
The CEO said of the last director who had the ‘full works’, in an email, “I’ve been tracking Xx as he has been working with you and he has most certainly enjoyed the experience and benefitted substantially. I also know Xx [his General Manager] was very impressed and has high hopes.”
Leadership team development (fast track)...
...for owners/partners of a small business
As a low cost, quick-intervention option, we provided some useful support in a two-stage session of just a few hours for a small management team that owns and runs a professional services company of about 40 staff. The partners plus the practice manager wanted to improve the way they operated as a team, although they had no particular ‘issues’ to work on. Stage one involved us listening to their story and asking questions to understand how they operated and then we asked them to complete a few on-line psychometric assessments. After analysis of what they had said and what the assessments revealed, we moved to stage two which was a single morning session with them all together, to go through the results, highlighting areas for further development, and general discussion of practical applications for all this new knowledge, which they were energised and pleased to know about. They said that this exercise helped explain things to them, further cemented their already positive working relationship and gave concrete steps to help them move to the next level of effectiveness in their teamworking and running their business.
We have supported or worked with key people and teams from large corporate organisations to SME sized businesses, sometimes through third parties, to deal with and support with all sorts of issues over the years, either personally as leaders, for their teams or for the organisation.
In order to retain the necessary confidentiality for those involved, we only name the larger organisations where there are too many people to guess who we might have helped.
Oracle Corporation | Global Payments | QinetiQ | Paradigm Secure Communications
O2 Telefonica | Symphony Teleca Plc | Brocade Communications Inc
Sangoma Technologies Corporation | Sourcefire Inc | Omnibus Solutions
Consultancy, Outsourcing and Care
Capgemini | Capita | Carillion Plc (three separate divisions)
General Medical Council | Care UK | Shire Pharmaceuticals UK
Doctors, dentists and vets
Cabinet Office | UK Commission for Employment & Skills | Royal Berkshire Fire & Rescue
PCS Union | Borough Councils: Redbridge (London) | Basingstoke & Deane | Wokingham
Manufacturers and Producers
Siemens | PepsiCo | Heinz | Southco Inc
MAN Trucks & Busses UK (VW-Audi Group) | Plus smaller manufacturers
Housing and Travel
Housing Associations: Raglan HA | Sentinel HA | Stonewater HA
MetroLine Travel | London United Busways
University of Hertfordshire | University of Oxford | University of Reading
McGraw-Hill Education | Elsevier | Qube Learning | Secondary schools
HQ Theatres & Hospitality | Engineering firms | Laboratories | Churches
Solicitors | Financial firms | HR practices | Branding and PR firms