Skip to content

Case Studies

Backstory

I was invited into a small manufacturing company to work with one of their young managers. My initial contracting meeting with him and his line manager led to two interrelated goals for the coaching: firstly, to spend less time being drawn into production line tasks and spend more of his time managing his production operatives. This was linked to his second goal to be seen more as a manager by his team. 

Approach

The coaching process began by helping the coachee to imagine a vision of the future and what it would feel and look like to be managing effectively and be respected by his team members. We then proceeded to explore those things that he perceived to be helping and hindering him in getting to that position. Through a strengths based approach, I was able to support my client in identifying his current strengths and in exploring these, he was also able to address his perceived hindrances in ways that felt authentic for him. This gave him confidence to communicate authoritatively on a 360 degree basis to ensure that his line manager and his team members were on board with him throughout.

Outcomes

It was clear at the start of the coaching contract that the coachee knew what he needed to implement in order to be successful in reaching his two coaching goals. However, prior to the coaching sessions he had found himself in a spiral of poor time management, lack of confidence and low self esteem. Through the coaching process he demonstrated emerging confidence in developing and implementing new ways of working that in turn enabled him to empower his team members and for him in turn to step back from the day to day production tasks.  Envisioning the future and working with strengths provided positivity and authenticity that enabled this manager to be the best that they could be.

Backstory

I had the pleasure of facilitating a leadership development programme for a group of Senior Managers who worked for an Australian Bank in Asia.  The organisation wanted to run a senior manager leadership development programme aimed at developing this target group of managers for promotion to Assistant Director. 

Approach

The programme began with each manager undergoing a 360-degree feedback process that highlighted personal strengths and development areas.  The programme also required the managers to attend a number of in-house training sessions facilitated by myself, my co-facilitator or a senior leader from within the company.  Underpinning the programme was an opportunity for each manager to work on a chosen business improvement project that was agreed and supported by their line manager.  The final part of the jigsaw was for each participant to receive six 1-to-1 coaching sessions that allowed them to work on their agreed development objectives and their chosen business improvement project.

Outcomes

Presentations on business improvement projects showed each manager’s development journey and how their learning was being applied within the business.  Coaching played a key factor in facilitating the managers’ leadership development and began to promote a culture of self-reflection that started to permeate upwards into higher levels of the leadership team.  A number of the participants were promoted within and across their divisions.  Due to the success of the first programme, we were invited to run the programme for a second year.  Minor modifications were made, mainly to include the participants’ line managers more in the whole process.

Backstory

A local bank in Asia wanted to approach their strategic development planning in a different way and were open to using some key principles of design thinking to help facilitate a different way of working and thinking about strategy development.  As facilitators of the process, we scoped out and ran an initial 2-day workshop for members of the Senior Leadership Team and Executive Board.

Approach

We drew on the 4 key stages of Liedtka & Ogilvie’s model of: What is; What if; What wows and What works as the design for the 2-day strategic planning workshop.  With the help of key senior people, we were able to collectively understand the landscape in which the bank was operating including insightful data gathered from different customer groups.  We were able to help the senior leadership team to identify key “wicked problems” that they were facing over the next 2 to 3 years.  Once these problems were prioritised, participants divided into small cross functional teams and devoted time and energy to experimenting with ideas and prototype solutions.  At the end of the workshop a range of these prototypes were presented to the Executive Board who then offered their feedback on each one.

Outcomes

Selected strategic prototypes were given the go-ahead for further development and sharing  with the bank’s customers for feedback and applicability.  Learning about the design thinking framework during the workshop enabled the senior team to reflect on the benefits of working differently in the future, i.e. the importance of understanding the needs of different customer target groups, working collaboratively, experimenting with ideas and taking time to share ideas about what was needed to develop a culture of innovation across all sectors of the business.

Liedtka, J. & Ogilvie, T (2011) Designing for Growth: a design thinking tool kit for managers.  Columbia Business School: USA