Case Study 1
This client approached me after a referral from a close colleague for advice on managing a senior member of the team who wasn’t performing as hoped, they had a feeling they were resisting change and they were a big influencer in the team. The client wanted the business to grow, the investment was in place and opportunities were plentiful. The client couldn’t understand why the senior team member wasn’t excited and being supportive.
The business turnover was £300k, a team of 7 and based locally. The sector they operate within had started to see growth before the pandemic and they could see the potential for growth with the right investment and plans. The MD was working toward these goals without the buy-in or knowledge from the team of how they could help/support.
An initial conversation to understand the business operating model, the people and the culture were made very easy by the openness of the MD. We gathered the information covering key headlines: organisation structure, job roles, leadership styles, workload, and plans. The MD quickly identified from the sessions that without discussing the goals clearly and creating a strategy the team weren’t engaged with the plans and this would indeed slow down the growth. A roadmap was devised to create solutions to the issues and when communicated the MD inspired the team with the high-level plan for year 1.
They did an amazing job of identifying the skill gaps within the team to achieve the growth, recruited new people who not only brought new knowledge but experience to the team and created some diverse thinking to the internal issues. The MD tackled his own leadership style to become a stronger coach and collaborative leader, whilst creating an organisation fit for the future that incorporated job descriptions, expectations, and purpose to each person. The team now have clarity within the processes and procedures and complete work to time and within scope realising every profit opportunity.
The newly formed Senior Management Team have been instrumental in supporting the MD in identifying the business opportunities through a full and thorough SWOT, they have collectively written the mission and vision to support the overarching strategy of the business and they will be writing their own tactical plans for each function and delivering their goals. The team have ownership of the plans and the future growth strategy, they are inspired to work together as a team and whilst they agree there is still some way to go to being a “storming” team they are on the right path.
The MD is now very happy with the senior team member and is now consciously aware that people don’t work to their best when they are swamped in work, covering too many job roles without any clarity and have a strong manager! The business has grown in headcount, financially from £300k to £800k in 12 months and have a strategy in place to deliver £3M in 3 years. The MD is delighted with the ROI on our time together but also it has exceeded his return on expectation, he didn’t have to manage the situation and lose a close friend.
Case Study 2
The founder and Director approached me after a recommendation from an FSB member as she was having trouble with a difficult situation and possible conversation with an associate. The associate wasn’t responding to any opportunities of support; to increase her knowledge & ability, improving her work ethic and to deliver a great brand experience for each client. This was having a negative impact on the Director in time, emotion, and confidence within this healthcare practice.
After an initial free discovery call, the director explained her desire to grow the practice and outlined her plans for the long term. She explained the associate wasn’t growing with the business and this was adding extra pressure to the Director to work harder and longer hours to make up the difference. She had tried many ways to create buy-in to the goal and knew deep down that a difficult conversation was inevitable.
The business was operating from 2 surgeries, over 4 days a week with the opportunity to grow into another surgery within 12 months if business dictated. During our coaching sessions, the Director was very open and honest about her worries and personal capacity to continue managing the practice without any further support but felt that the control of the business should be closely managed. The business model was complex, all marketing was undertaken by the Director and all investment was self-funded.
Very quickly she identified that change was required, and it started with her need to control and manage the business. She decided that recruiting a new associate would bring extra support and continue growth, maximising the business use of each surgery would deliver the initial growth targets and expanding into new services would bring new clients. With a business loan she was able to buy new equipment to support the new service proposition, she has initiated a digital agency to create a new website and a marketing agency to design a new marketing campaign to grow the practice within her branding and offer new associates a great package with a simplified profit share model.
This business is setting up for the future, as we come out of the pandemic the business will now grow with new staff and less pressure on the Director – ensuring a good night’s sleep. The associate is now less of an issue and has been engaged with the future strategy, fingers crossed the decision will be positive, if not I will be there to support my client with the difficult conversation when required.
Case study 3
A 3rd sector organisation approached me to support the build of their 5-year strategy. The Directors had no experience in building strategies and wanted support to deliver to the Trustees and Chair a robust strategic plan that would create transformational change. Previous plans were not implemented fully, had low levels of detailed accountability and there were issues with decision making and control.
They were a very collaborative team on this project and very receptive to new ways of working, this helped gain momentum quickly. They enjoyed the pre-work to each session, and this allowed them to raise their knowledge and understanding individually to make the most of our time together, they particularly liked the YouTube video links. Each one-hour session was productive as we worked through the 5-stage model. Each session was a build to the strategy, including a SWOT using external data and designing a mission and vision for the organisation. It was a real pleasure to see the strategy build over 8 x 1-hour sessions.
The overarching strategy is SMART, and the 5 key objectives have been designed with a RACI to mitigate any accountability or control issues. The team have written the tactical plans and briefed the team accordingly. They have review dates planned and a regular update on progress for the Board. The objectives have been cross referenced against the job descriptions of the team and the goals included within each person’s objectives. The directors have plans to continuously update the team on success and progress.
I am delighted to report this exercise has created the clarity required and the accountability they all craved to move this wonderful charity forward.