Coca Cola Feedback

Feedback from Steve Thorpe, Operations Director for the Coca Cola factories in GB:

“This works far better than any of the many approaches to leadership and engagement I have experienced; it transformed 2 previously poorly managed sites into best in GB; it just works!”

 Thank you Steve!

2 New Team Members!

I am pleased to welcome Chris Brown and Fran Costello to our team.

Chris joins us from Thales after a career involving the design and implementation of major change projects across multiple sites.

Fran joins to add her specialist capabilities in increasing results via personal and team growth and resilience.

Their profiles are in the ‘Meet the Team’ section and I look forward to the mutual learning and development from working with Fran and Chris.

Pat Browne Rejoins the Team Strengthening Problem-Solving and French Capability

I am delighted to welcome Pat Browne back to the team after two years as EMEA Managing Director of Kepner Tregoe.

Our situational approach to problem-solving includes diagnosing which approach is best suited to the particular client need and Pat's KP experience will deepen our capability in this area.

Ex McKinsey and based in Luxembourg,  Pat will also add another fluent French capability to the team.

The limitations of survey-based, top down approaches to Employee Engagement

We distinguish between "management engaging employees" usually via top-down "initiatives" often driven by engagement survey responses


our approach, which stresses that employees are already engaged (in supporting families, loved ones, in their hobbies and passions etc.)  .... just not always on the things their leaders want them to be engaged in!

The discretionary effort is already there but it is often latent i.e. not realized in the absence of a system of work and culture that deserves such effort from staff.

The table below summarises the key differentiators:


Shingo Correlation?

Interesting to learn this week that we have provided the leadership training for 25% (3 in 12) of the total European recipients of Shingo awards (1 Prize, I Silver Medallion and 2 Bronze Medallions). The reason it is 3 not 4 is that 2 awards are for the same organization (Lake Region).

If we wanted to mislead with statistics we could say 4 in 13 ... but we don't!!

We have done work with 2 of the other 9 but not extensive work so no correlation is meaningful in those cases.


7th in Europe! Best Small Company to Work For

Congratulations to the Promed team for finishing 7th in Europe's Best Small Company to Work For. This builds on twice finishing 1st , once 2nd and once 5th in its national equivalent in the 4 years since the Rapid Mass Engagement.

Promed's application of the Rapid Mass Engagement is notable because:

  • The entire initial engagement process was completed in 5 days
  • The diagnostic ensured that Lean was not just copy and pasted onto a unique services situation but was designed to meet the organization's needs
  • The staff decided the organization's Higher Purpose (that is engagement not merely "involvement"!)
  • Profits increased by 100%
  • Sales increased by 50%

Lean Management Journal - The Rapid Mass Engagement Process - Part Two


In a previous LMJ article, which you can find here (it is highly recommended that you read that first) the distinction between engagement on the one hand, and involvement and consultation on the other, was explained.

This article explains the practical methods for making that vision a reality, and sustaining it over time despite changes in Senior Leadership composition.

To read the article, download a PDF version.

European Works Council Agrees New Guiding Principles

Sometimes our Engagement approach  delivers results in apparently unconnected areas. We facilitated a "new start" in GKN's relationships with its European Works Council in the week before Christmas.

The Guiding Principles agreed in Stratford have created the basis for a trulywin-win, approach which a committed and talented group of Company and Employee Representatives will build on in the years to come.

Lean Management Journal - When Employees Create their own High Performance Culture

When Employees Create their own High Performance Culture - The Rapid, Mass Engagement Process

In the first of two articles, Frank Devine outlines what Rapid, Mass Engagement Process is and shares with us some of the results that this way of thinking has produced. His second article will examine the practical issues of implementing it, so stay tuned next month. 

To read the article, download a pdf version.



Association for Manufacturing Excellence Audits Our Work

Quote from Jon Tudor, President of the Association for Manufacturing Excellence after visiting the current Rapid, Mass Engagement intervention in Boston Scientific:

“As President of the Association for Manufacturing Excellence, UK I visit and assess many factories and this is by far the most thorough and developed employee engagement strategy and execution that I have seen”

New Team Members Add Dedicated Health and Social Care Capability

We are delighted to announce that both Simon Dodds and Kate Silvester have joined the team to add a dedicated Health and Social Care Capability.

Systems Engineering applied to Health with a focus on building capability will enhance our existing work and will enable our team to add value across the whole supply chain from Pharma and Medical Devices via Hospitals to the patient.

As practising Doctors using a learning by doing approach, they make it easier for senior medical staff to engage with much needed improvements.


Kiran Sharma adds Occupational Health capacity to the team

We are delighted to announce a major new capability via Kiran Sharma joining our team.

Kiran was part of the physiotherapist team for the Paralympics in 2012 and has had major successes in returning athletes (including internationals) and others to fitness quicker than was thought possible and, in some cases, when surgery had been recommended.

Her team provides an occupational health service that helps organisations reduce costs by maintaining a healthy, happy and productive work force and by accelerating the return to work of employees to the mutual advantage of employees, organisations and the public health service.

Welcome to Kiran and her team.

Promed 2nd Best Small Company to Work For 2016!

Congratulations to the Promed team for, once again, doing so well in Ireland's Best Companies to Work For awards.

Since the 2012 Rapid, Mass Engagement Process whereby Promed's entire workforce created their own high-performance culture, they have now finished 5th, 1st and 2nd in this prestigious award for the last 3 years.

Well done to all the team for sustaining progress through a major recession!


Conor McKeown joins the team

We are delighted to announce that Conor McKeown has joined the team. He was previously Head of HR for the Royal Mail and led its People and Organisational Development internal consultancy.

Conor has a specialism in large group facilitation and decision making and worked with us as a client in a radical Search Conference for that internal consultancy.

His 30+ years experience of handling Industrial Relations in the Public Sector adds a new strength to our Employee Relations and Engagement team.



Ian Forrester joins the team

We are delighted to announce that Ian Forrester has joined the team.

Ian was one of the pioneers in Socio-Technical System Design while at Cummins Engines in the 80s and led the employee relations transformations necessary in two major privatisations.

His vast emplyee relations experience complements our Rapid, Mass Engagement work and provides extra help for any stand alone change projects where establishing  a partnership approach to trade unions is key.

Ian also adds fluent Spanish and experience in central America to the team.

Lake Region wins Shingo Bronze

Congratulations to the team at Lake Region  for winning the Shingo Bronze Medallion.

Lake Region were the  first organisation in Ireland (2007) to adopt our Cathedral/Higher Purpose Model of leadership designed to systematically support a High Performance Continuous Performance culture .

Well done to Noel and the team in New Ross!



Andy Brophy joins the team

We are pleased to welcome Andy Brophy to the team. He will specialise in the application of Continuous Improvement to Services and the idea generation aspects of engagement and continuous improvement. He strengthens our Six Sigma capability and our team in Ireland.

Andy is the 4th graduate of the Cardiff (now Buckingham) Lean Enterprise Research Centre MSc in Lean Operations to join the team after Kate Bailey (ex Toyota), Glynis Caulfield (ex Unipart) and Neil Trivedi (ex GKN).

He is the author of three books, "The Financial Times Guide to Lean", "Innovative Lean" and "Lean Healthcare". 

Neil Trivedi joins the team

We are delighted to welcome Neil Trivedi to the continuous improvement team.

Neil joins us after 7 yearsas GKN's Global Business Processes Director.

He specialises in the application of continuous improvement to services and support operations.

Neil is the 3rd MSc in Lean Operations graduate to join the team (after Glynis Caulfield and Kate Bailey).