Lloyd’s has a long history – the arrival of a new CEO meant that he wanted to retain the best of Lloyd’s past whilst ensuring that it was ready for the challenges of the future. We were commissioned to support the new CEO in his vision for creating a new Lloyd’s culture by engaging his Executive Team and the rest of the corporation. The key changes identified were – a desire for more open and challenging debate at all levels of the organisation, to break down silo practices by energising and connecting people across the organisation, find new ways of thinking and working together, establish and develop a Leadership Team and Extended Management Team and create a modernised image of Lloyd’s – both internally and externally.
How did we work together?
Through conversations with the Executive Team and people at all levels of the corporation we developed a strategy that focused on engaging the entire corporation in the change. This strategy was supported strongly by internal resources from HR and across the organisation to ensure that we developed credibility in Lloyd’s employees and they owned the change. The key strands of Questions of Difference’s work included:
- 360o Feedback for the Executive Team
- Coaching and development for the Executive Team (ET)
- Establishment of an Extended Management Team (EMT)
- Bringing together the ET and EMT to develop a collective vision for leadership in the corporation
- Developing a staff engagement process to develop common ways of thinking and acting called the PaceSetter Programme – setting the pace for change
- About 70% of Corporation staff attended the workshops, sponsored by the EMT
- Training internal facilitators to co-facilitate staff workshops with Questions of Difference and run team away days
- Contributions to other key initiatives, e.g. refurbishment of the work environment to ensure that people felt heard and had a voice
Did the outcome meet expectations?
There are stories of changes at personal, departmental and organisational levels and across all hierarchies – interestingly the most impressive outcome has been the impact on the staff ‘on the ground’. It has been recognised that ‘bottom up’ change is often harder to achieve and the fact that there is now such widespread energy for it at this level, as well as at a senior level, is particularly noteworthy. Key outcomes noted from an independent research report on the impact of the change programme include:
- Increased individual and collective responsibility at all levels. People feel accountable for the changes in the organisation
- A strong challenge to the silo mentality has resulted in more communication across the organisation
- Better relationships have been forged due to the greater recognition of the value of differences – people actively go out and seek different opinions
- Reports of a more informal, humanised culture
- Greater openness to change, energy for modernisation, an openness to challenge and an increased capacity to take the initiative at all levels of the Corporation
- Improved internal and external image of Lloyd’s (as measured in an independent internal survey Spring 2007)
- More ‘team Lloyd’s’ conversations and commitment to personal development
- Reduced external spend on facilitators
- The recognition of the value of the internal facilitators and the step change in their behaviour / personal development as a result of their training
- People are more comfortable with uncertainty and change
- Conversations are more honest, challenging – and conflicts are surfaced
- People in the market (outside of Lloyd’s) are starting to talk about having different conversations with Lloyd’s people – there is a different buzz
What did Lloyds learn from the relationship with Questions of Difference?
- Let the ‘solution’ develop as more and more people get on board – you do not have to start with a complete plan in place
- Attend to all parts of the system, and link them (ET, followed by EMT, PaceSetters Programme for all staff, developing internal facilitator capability, working environment, internal communications)
- The ability to challenge and to question
- The importance of hearing and seeking out different opinions
- The value of strong facilitation skills
- The power of engaging the organisation from ‘the bottom up’ ensures that change naturally emerges and is owned by everyone
- Everyone has something valuable to contribute