We’re delighted to have been awarded a contract, with Babcock International to help build further levels of Sustainable Operational Excellence (SOE) across the organization. With extensive experience in the Defence sector, the U&E gang are looking forward to continuing our successful work with the market leader.

Alex Lewis, Director of Unleash & Engage said: “We’ve been working with Babcock International since Oct 2019 on the Vanguard Deep Maintenance Project, introducing the SOE system as the basis for deploying the submarine refit, and how test and commissioning is planned and executed.

A team of 24 coaches from Unleash & Engage are currently engaged at the Devonport site and up to now have coached around 250 leaders and teams of over 1000. In the time we’ve been working with the Vanguard team we’ve already seen significant improvements in health and safety and the program schedule.

This new contract win is part of a wider, longer-term program of work across the Devonport site and we look forward to continuing the great work with Babcock.”

 

As we expand our programmes in the Netherlands and add new members to our gang, the new office in Keizersgracht, Amsterdam is the next step forward and will be our base for mainland Europe operations.

If you would like more information or interested in joining our gang, please get in touch.

Here’s my answer:

‘We help people to change their habits: Unleash & Engage helps people understand why they behave the way they do, helping them to see what the future could look like, coaching them to create new habits, and then working alongside them to embed these habits, instilling the desire to continually improve the habits incrementally day on day.’

The results are sustainable because if people design and implement the changes themselves, they will sustain the changes: ‘People Protect What They Build’.  That is what real engagement looks like!

Those changes then manifest themselves in vastly increased productivity (by whatever measure you choose to use) and increase in engagement.

We Unleash the Engagement!

Sounds easy? Changing habits requires intensity and frequency but habits can be changed quickly.  We typically expect to see results in just six weeks.

Many organizations are grappling with significant decisions about technology direction or investment in plant and equipment in order to improve their productivity. Before going down this route, they should carefully consider if they really are providing their employees with the framework to be truly engaged and as productive as they can be.

Unleash & Engage have developed a proven 12 step process which enables organizations to achieve Sustainable Operational Excellence and massive productivity and engagement improvements in just 12 weeks. See the next post ‘SOE in 12 Steps Series’ to learn more.

As Aristotle said: ‘We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence is therefore not an act, but a habit.’ The highest performing companies are those that thoughtfully design their organisation so that the sum of its parts all contribute to building and reinforcing those habits.

Alex Lewis from Unleash & Engage describes their approach to designing ‘organisational systems’ to transform business performance.

Download the full whitepaper here…

A leading thinker and practitioner of Lean, Lexus approached Unleash & Engage founder; Mark Gregory to speak about Transformational Change in Real Life.

Mark presented to the Sales & Marketing teams from Lexus giving practical insights on leading transformational change.  Focusing on Difference, Logic & Emotion, Involvement, Engaging & Communicating, creating new sustainable habits and dealing with loneliness.

So, you can see when Mark talks about transformational change it doesn’t follow the usual leadership textbook, but instead the Unleash & Engage proven approach to achieving real sustainable change and operational excellence and how this approach can be applied in your work and personal life.  To find out more contact Mark Gregory

Read more on Lexus here.

Founder of Unleash & Engage Mark Gregory has extensive business transformation experience, developing his early career at Toyota; often considered the leading exemplar of Lean in the world.

Participating in their renown Lean Philosophy programme, Mark has continued his work with Toyota and was asked to provide a Keynote motivational speech on Engagement and Change through Lean to Toyota Sales & Marketing teams across Europe.

Mark will tell you that the things you read about Lean are in the main incomplete in understanding and don’t reflect the undeniably successful Toyota approach to Lean, which at its heart centers on engagement not just process.

When Mark talks about Lean it’s always a great success and through his presentation he covers:

  • Practical insights in leading engagement and change through lean
  • Difference
  • Logic & Emotion
  • Involvement
  • Engage & Communicate
  • New Habits
  • Loneliness
  • The connection between lean and change.

If you want to find the real story on Lean and how this approach is part of achieving sustainable operational excellence, please contact Mark Gregory

 

“Effective communication is 20% what you know and 80% how you feel about what you know” Jim Rohn.

Communicate and Engage to Infinity and Beyond!

Article by Mark Gregory:

I have never come across a single person who has been associated with change, in one form or another, that has not articulated the power of effective communication as an imperative for success. John Kotter, probably one of the single most influential people on the subject of change and change management in the last two decades, describes communication as; “one of the eight most critical steps within any business transformation”, and he talks about “communicating your vision and direction to the power of 1000”.

From my own experience, if I had received £1 every time I thought I had clearly communicated and then found myself having the same conversation (just like in the film Groundhog Day), or when the person had told me they had understood me, only to find out later that they hadn’t, I would be a very wealthy man. My experience of communication within change is that the breakdown is even more apparent, as change also invokes lots of other emotions that restrict us from receiving the correct messages.

It is my view, formed from experience, that the subject of communication is the most untapped and misunderstood element of change. If we want to effect true and sustained change, we require a bit of what Buzz has going on. We need to communicate and engage to ‘infinity and beyond’.   

 

Communication vs Engagement

Often when people start a conversation with me about communication, they are actually, without realising, really referring to engagement. I use a simple maturity continuum to describe communication versus engagement with respect to change.

Level 1 – Awareness:

You meet someone you know and ask them, “Have you heard about the change that is going on?” They haven’t, so you make them aware by explaining it to them.

Level 2 – Understanding:

You meet someone you know and ask them, “Have you heard about the change that is going on?” They have heard of it but don’t know the detail, so you explore it with them and help them understand.

Level 3 – Advocacy:

You meet someone you know and before you can speak they say to you, “Hey, have you heard about the change that is going on?” They then proceed to tell you all about it, becoming an advocate for the change.

‘Awareness’ is communication, ‘Understanding’ is the tipping point between communication and engagement and ‘Advocacy’ is engagement. It is important that we understand where the audience is on the continuum and recognise what it may, therefore, need to move to the next stage. All too often, we assume the audience is at a more mature stage than it actually is, that all the members of the audience are at the same stage, or, worst of all, we simply do not think about it!

Communication is a process where people are aware and understand. Engagement is a process whereby people become personally implicated in the success of the change.

Organise to Communicate and Engage

Quite simply, if you want to create engagement, you have to organise to provide it and, in my experience, organisations do not. They continue to believe they can invoke change by connecting with people in the same way they have always done, using the same methods, in the same format, with the same output. Remember Approaches to Change – 1? What did we say? Without a doubt, you need to do something different here if you want a different result. Let me give you an example: when once leading a change programme within a large organisation, I actually created an engagement steering group that met at least weekly and, at times, daily over a twelve-month period. We focused on using every avenue possible, even inventing a few new avenues along the way, to connect with our change audience. We quite simply took the audience along the engagement continuum, always looking at different approaches.

Time and Energy

The success one has in this area of change is a pure function of time and energy. My experience shows that organisations and leaders generally do not apply enough time and energy in this area, preferring to work on the detail of the change rather than engaging the audience in it. Remember Approaches to Change – 3?  No involvement generally means no commitment. How much time do you spend focusing on the change engagement proposition?

Sustainment

Change sustainment is about engagement; engagement means advocacy, and advocacy means focused time, energy and organisation. Underestimate it at your peril!

 

Always remember the Buzz Light-year effect – ‘Communicate and Engage to Infinity and Beyond!’

If you have any thoughts or questions regarding this article or any of our services, please do not hesitate to get in touch – click here to contact us today.

Read more…. click to see the series 1, 2, 3

 

Without involvement, there is no commitment. Mark it down, asterisk it, circle it, underline it. No involvement, no commitment.” Dr Stephen Covey.

Article by Mark Gregory:

Over the years I have been involved in many change programmes both on the receiving end of the change and leading it. When on the receiving end, more often than not, these programmes never quite felt right to me. When leading them I often found it difficult, initially, to convince others of the need for change and the benefits of the change. I also found whilst the change was often understood at an intellectual level, it wasn’t always carried out as intended.

In Approaches to Change – 2, I explored the logic of change versus the emotion of change. I also spoke about the data and the imagery used in change, and the need for the emotional connection. While in my experience these elements all play a key role, they are not the whole answer to the ‘hearts and minds conundrum’. Another major element is the idea you have to be involved in the development of change to emotionally connect.

What Your Reaction Means

As Covey says, ‘no involvement means no commitment’. Have you presented something that you have put time, energy and effort into, which you felt was a solution to a problem, but the audience disagreed? How did you feel when it was challenged? What were your reactions? Were they ones of logic or emotion? My guess is, you had a desire to protect your ideas, quite simply because you built them. In my experience, people protect what they build. Or, put another way, the more involvement the more commitment we find we have (that is of course on the basic assumption the output is aligned with our way of thinking in the first place).

So if we buy into the principle, no involvement, generally means no commitment and people protect what they build, the question is not one of ‘should or should I not involve people?’ but ‘how do I involve people?’

Involving The Right People

Ask yourself the question, ‘why do you not involve people today?’ The answers, I am sure, are many and varied, ranging from, ‘this is not a democracy, we can’t all have a vote on everything’ to ‘we all have a job to do and we are experts, so we decide’. The reality of it is, the level of involvement from other people probably all comes down to time and effort. Does the scale of the change justify the time and effort required to generate the involvement and commitment? Remember the question here is not ‘is the solution or the change the right one?’ but ‘will those responsible for the sustainment of the new order live it as if it were their own?’

Only those charged with the change responsibility will be able to understand the full extent of the involvement opportunities and how they could possibly be weaved into the change journey. There are a few stages to consider:

  • Concept stage: How can I involve people in the conceptual thinking? Top tip, resist the urge to only present the finished ideas, that’s the point!
  • Design stage: How can I involve people in designing the solution? Top tip, involve those most affected by the change.
  • Implementation stage: How can I involve the change receivers? Top tip, the more the merrier, wildfire spreads quicker than an inferno. Leave room for improvement.
  • Sustainment stage: How can I involve people in the refinement of sustainment? Top tip, As exponents of the virtues of a lean philosophy we could not pass the opportunity for a bit of Plan, Do, Check, Act.

The Real Question

Having said all this, it only really comes down to one question – ‘How much effort am I prepared to put into the involvement for the commitment proposition?’ That depends on how much you want the change to be sustained. My experience dictates that – sustainment is a function of involvement.

If you have any thoughts or questions regarding this article or any of our services, please don’t hesitate to get in touch – click here to contact us today.

Read more…. click to see the series 1, 2,