NFU Mutual were undertaking a major transformation programme which required new technology, new ways of working and new skills from their contact centre employees and managers. Having previously undertaking many other change programmes, senior management were concerned about change fatigue and knew that they wanted to implement the change differently this time around.
Having previously undertaken a variety of pieces of work for NFU Mutual in areas such as talent management and leadership development, I was contacted by NFU Mutual to ask if I had any ideas for how they could ‘do’ change differently on this important project. Previous programmes had used change training for all employees and there was a concern that people were getting fed up with hearing the same messages over and over again.
I worked with the programme leadership team to create a different approach to change that was more subtle and tailored to individual and team requirements. This involved spending a lot of time working with individual leaders and teams to understand their concerns about the change on them and their teams and then creating specific content and input that would meet their needs.
There were concerns about making sure that everyone had the necessary skills and information to work in the new environment if there was not a consistent training programme that everyone attended (as had been the case in the past.) Still wishing to maintain a different approach to this change programme so that employees realized that things really were changing, we developed a range of materials that team managers could use in their team meetings to effectively tell the story of how things would be different in the future, thus avoiding the need for everyone to attend a training programme. We also continued to work closely with individual team managers and senior stakeholders to create interventions that were impactful in that moment for their teams whilst maintaining consistency in communications. We also developed core change messages to be included in the regular corporate communication framework.
This approach ensured that all the interventions with teams and individuals had maximum impact and felt different to how change had been communicated before. We were able to clearly describe what would look and feel different in the ‘new world’ and this ensured that the transition to the new ways of working happened seamlessly and with minimal impact on day to day working. Taking a more thoughtful approach to change leadership paid dividends in terms of building relationships with key stakeholders and ensured high levels of buy in.
(link to recommendation for this work on LinkedIn – this is the content of the review from Kate Clarke)
“Susanne provided change and transformation support to over 1500 people as part of my work stream over the last 2.5 years on a major change programme at NFU Mutual. Susanne’s deep knowledge and experience in this space shone through and she was able to provide impactful, tailored and thoughtful interventions for our audience when they were needed. She worked with no set mandate and because of this was able to utilise her wide range of skills and knowledge to work with line managers to create interventions that were impactful at that moment, for their teams. She worked closely with me, my team and built her own relationships with our stakeholders to ensure her interventions had maximum impact and were in line with other interventions being delivered as part of the People & Org work stream. Susanne is a pleasure to work with and slotted right into the team and was sensitive to, and kept abreast of its multiple streams of work. She actively worked to ensure that her work was in line with the teams and timed her interventions perfectly. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Susanne”