Case Studies

BT Case Study

Coaching ‘one team’ culture

The Background

Having recently appointed a new Leadership Team, the Group IC Director of a large telecommunications company, approached me to help with their development.

Accountable for communications within individual business unit areas, it was important that the team was also able to operate as ‘one central team’ in order to deliver significant changes to the core purpose, vision, strategy, and organisation of the IC function as a whole.

The Solution

Phase 1 – Cultural Audit

  • Individual interviews and internal research to determine current ways of working.
  • Individual DiSC psychometric assessments and 121 coaching sessions to establish a clear profile of each member of the team, identifying preferred individual behaviours and work preferences.
  • Group Assessment identifying the overall group culture within the team and areas of potential conflict/barriers to achieving cohesive working.
  • Facilitation of a 2-day Leadership Away Day to review the findings, understand opportunities for improved working and identify/agree the overall development programme.

Phase 2 – Dedicated coaching support

  • Programme of 121 coaching sessions with individual members of the IC Leadership Team
  • Team coaching support at regular Leadership Team meetings, focused on developing behaviours and improving collective ways of working.
  • Facilitation at quarterly strategy sessions to review progress against the IC Leadership Development Plan and further develop the team culture.
  • Monthly coaching/strategic advisory support for the Director of IC.

Phase 3 – 5 Behaviours Development Programme

  • Development and facilitation of a 1-day ‘‘5 Behaviours’ programme. focused on developing the team behaviours to next level of cohesive working.
  • 5 Behaviours Team profile identifying a base line for the team against 5 key behaviours (Trust/Conflict/Commitment/Accountability/Delivering Results)
  • 5 Behaviours Leadership Development plan focused on the priority behaviours agreed at the team event.
  • 121 Coaching sessions with members of the team to identify and agree individual performance plans in line with the 5 Behaviours.
Results

After 12 months, feedback from the team revealed.

  • A more collaborative and joined up team that enjoyed being/working together – stronger and more trusting of each other.
  • Improved and more effective relationships across the team, driven from a deeper understanding and appreciation of individual behaviours.
  • Deeper insight and understanding of the DiSC model helping to drive improved working relationships with other teams and key stakeholders.
  • More active listening across the team, enabling a better understanding and appreciation of individual views and positions
  • Greater clarity on the collective team role and purpose helping to achieve better and faster decision making.
  • Alignment within the IC Leadership Team helping individuals to deliver the IC change programme faster and more effectively within their areas of accountability.

A stronger team culture that helped everyone through the personal and organisational impacts of the 2020 COVID pandemic,. Operating as one unified team to deliver a consistent communication response

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“From the early days of team coaching, where she supported us in introducing greater rigour and best practice process, through to 121 coaching with senior IC leaders, Annette has made a huge impact. As a result, we’re now working seamlessly together as one great team, delivering for the benefit of everyone in BT.”

Helen Willetts
Director of Internal Communications

O2 Case Study

A new Corporate Affairs model

The Background

The Corporate Affairs Team of a mobile communication company had embarked on a comprehensive review of its operating model and structure.

The challenge for the team was to deliver the scale of the change needed to help meet future business ambitions, whilst still maintaining the high standard of operational communications the team was known and respected for.

The Solution

Providing executive leadership and team coaching to the Senior Leadership team over a period of 9 months we:

  • Investigated and developed a number of potential new operating models, clearly highlighting the associated risks. threats, benefits, and opportunities.
  • Supported the Director of Corporate Affairs to secure critical executive level sponsorship for the new model.
  • Designed and developed the governance framework and associated systems and processes for the new ways of working.
  • Developed and facilitated a series of ‘Team Days’ helping to ensure the changes were delivered in a collaborative and supportive way across Corporate Affairs.
  • Structured the recruitment and induction of new Leadership Team members.
  • Developed a capability framework to support individual and team skills in new roles across Corporate Affairs.
  • Empowered the Senior Leadership Team to drive real behavioural change, delivering a ‘fit for the future’, strategic communication function
Results

The Leadership Team took greater ownership and accountability for the model, having been instrumental in shaping and implementing it. The team’s purpose and focus became clearer, in turn helping them to make more informed, strategic decisions on behalf of the business. Despite having to deal with the impact of the new model, the Corporate Affairs team successfully delivered a high- profile communication campaign, creating a single communication strategy that achieved both internal and external business objectives.  With the Leadership Team taking more responsibility for the strategy and day to day operations, the Director of Corporate Affairs was able to dedicate more of their time to supporting the CEO and Executive Team, ultimately leading to their appointment as a member of the Executive Team.

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” Put simply Annette was my anchor during a critical and challenging time.

Not only was she central to developing and delivering our new Corporate Affairs’ model, Annette also challenged my thinking throughout, ensuring we delivered a truly strategic capability, able to play a critical role in delivering O2’s future business goals and ambitions.  No matter how uncomfortable the conversation, she was the voice of reason, providing me with the clarity and confidence I needed to help me make some difficult decisions.”

Nicola Green
Director of Corporate Affairs

Cooper Vision Case Study

Breaking down silos with DiSC

The Background

Following a period of significant change and business growth, the UK Director of Operations of a global manufacturing company, was focused on creating a more engaged and informed workforce. The aim was to encourage the function as a whole to work more collectively, with the benefit of identifying and improving efficiencies and service levels across the division.

Recognising that this behavioural change would need to begin with the Leadership Team, I was invited to design a coaching programme that would help the team gain greater insight into how they currently operated and more importantly, identify and deal with any ‘silo’ behaviours.

The Solution

In discussion with the UK Operations Director, we designed a programme of activities based around the Everything DiSC Workplace model. We asked each of the 12 Heads of Department to complete a confidential on-line DiSC Workplace assessment and reviewed the results with each individual in a personal 121 coaching session. Having worked through individual perceptions and issues as part of the coaching process, we designed and facilitated a Leadership Team Workshop. The content focussed on surfacing key behavioural blind spots and providing practical coaching exercises to help the Leadership Team collaborate, identify and prioritise key areas requiring change.

Results

The major shift came through a review of the teams DiSC Group Culture report. Working through the key behaviours within the team, helped everyone gain a deeper appreciation and understanding of why and how the overriding group behaviour was, in part, responsible for some of their key operational issues. More importantly, it enabled them to discuss and agree what changes were needed not only to their own behaviours but also to some of their management systems and processes. As a result, the team were able to revise the existing internal communication strategy in favour of establishing a more people focused approach. Within the session they prioritised key channels with a commitment to driving greater openness and collaboration not only within their own departments but across the UK Operations function as a whole.

By the end of the Workshop everyone recognised and agreed the value of being together as an extended team and welcomed future opportunities to work together in a more open and collaborative way. Not only were they able to identify individual personal development plans but also gained a deeper sense of their collective role and purpose, agreeing a set of priority actions they could continue working on in future team meetings.

A strapline that they team developed during the course of the workshop ‘Alone faster, together further’. summed up the behavioural shift they were able to make as a team and set the tone for their future ways of working together.

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“I believe that in a couple of days we made more progress in defining our communication/engagement strategy, compiling a plan and identifying the key next steps, than we would have done in many months without engaging Annette’s support.”

Jason Burden
Operations Director, Cooper Vision