This client was looking to significantly grow and improve their business (double turnover and treble profits) against a background of little or no investment in the employee engagement agenda and a largely change averse workforce. We asked the question, 'How much of your marketing budget do you spend on your existing staff?'. The answer, as always, was not enough.
As always it starts with listening - to the staff, to the customers and to the Leaders. As we always say, 'The staff and the clients have all the answers, you just have to get the listening right'. From there we could formulate a clear plan in line with the business growth goals and lay out our engagement and communication priorities. It was a long list but the key was to focus on what could be achieved, how and when. Baby steps to start with. Easy wins. Low hanging fruit. To show we'd listened, understood and then acted. We also put in a new internal comms environment, both to listen and ensure the key messages were understood; de siloed the business; and trained the Leaders to lead and the Managers to manage; and, crucially, removed the barriers that tended to stop engagement in its tracks.
It's not a done deal. The business is still developing and evolving - and some days can be two steps forward, one step back. But if it was easy everyone could do it all the time, couldn't they?
So, two and a half years on, having driven the engagement agenda across the business where are we?
Well, we think that results in aspects of the Company performance speak for themselves. Survey response rate has gone up to 62% (from a low base) and overall engagement has gone up from 51% to 64% - a 25% increase. However, these are just numbers and don't really mean anything. Or do they? Customer compliments are up and complaints are down. Staff absenteeism has reduced by 50% (it was killing the business). Sales from staff leads have doubled to £250,000. Staff ideas on new products and efficiency savings are worth another £250,000 each. And net profit ? Up 50% in less than three years.