Although technically very capable, the management team were placing over-reliance on Directors for advice and decision making, particularly in relation to how they worked with their teams.
As with many businesses in the sector, staff turnover and recruitment are a challenge. Consistent communications and effective performance support play an important part in keeping employees engaged.
Director and General Manager Steve Owen invited hgkc to develop the ability of the management team to manage and lead their teams, to encourage them to step up to management and leadership, and to help build greater alignment behind the goals of the business.
Peter Quintana started by inviting Steve and his team to complete DISC profiles, helping them develop personal improvement plans based on the increased self-awareness and awareness of others gained from a workshop exploring their profiles in depth. He then worked with Steve to launch the first of a regular employee engagement survey, which would serve as a benchmark to help measure the impact of our work.
After providing a report of insights gained from the survey results and the DISC profiling, he worked with Steve and fellow directors Julian Lee and Julie Hoddinott to craft a vision for Hydrastore that would be the foundation for a bespoke management development programme that focused on the specific challenges faced when leading technical people.
Our programme introduced the management team to techniques for effective delegation, effective recruitment, identifying and planning the development needs of their teams, giving specific relevant feedback, encouraging innovation that meets customer and market needs, building trust within their teams, and communicating effectively at all levels in the organisation. The focus was on learning and practising new skills to encourage the team to shift their focus from ‘doing’ to ‘leading’, and in turn help them to deliver on projects.
There has been significant change in the management styles and behaviours of the team, and Steve and Julian have seen an improvement in their willingness to take on responsibility and accountability for their personal and team performance.
Engagement survey results have backed this up, with a marked reduction in negative comments and consistent improvements in engagement scores.
Steve has found he is less drawn into day-to-day management and operational issues, leaving more time for him to focus on sales and strategic planning the future of the business. This has also led to a significant increase in revenue.
Looking forward, Steve and Julian are committed to continuing to work with hgkc, switching focus to improving alignment between each partner in the Fluid Power Partnership.