Local Government – Leadership Behaviour Change Case Study

Background

A local government organisation wanted to improve their management practices.

Previous management and leadership capability development had been based around training courses and conferences. However evaluations of the impact showed no sustained change in management practices after these exercises – meaning a great deal of time and money has been invested in development programmes that produced no return on investment.

One of our associates created a programme that produced sustained practice change by identifying topics that management would have the opportunity to improve and that would have a positive impact. Once the topic was selected a planned and prepared approach was agreed and participants were coached through the action stage into the maintenance stage.

Process:

  • Participants attended a session where they were introduced to 9 new skills and tools. The introduction took the form of a verbal explanation, a video and then an exercise for each skill/tool
  • Participants (in conjunction with the Managers) selected one skill/tool to work on based on impact and opportunity to implement. A plan was then created with their manager detailing what they will do, why, who with and whens
  • Our associate completed preparation work to lay the foundations for success (such as communication coaching) with their team and the manager began the implementation process
  • The participant received regular follow up coaching – with observations from the team and the manager fed back to the participant until competency was achieved
  • The participant was supported to maintain the new management practice and another topic was selected to focus on

Framework:

Participants designed and implemented practice plans focussed on achieving desired outcomes at a practical level – ensuring they are able to use context during the implementation:

  • What behaviours did you intend to change in your staff – why, how, and when?
  • How are you going to communicate and involve them in this?

This framework provides all involved with very specific targets which can be used to measure success and focus coaching & support.

Our associate used a specific Change Coaching Model to ensure that barriers were analysed and dealt with, that each step was at the right stage of the change process and the correct tactics were used at each stage.

Measure:

Kirkpatrick’s training evaluation model has four levels. The aim of this programme is to achieve level 4.

The aim of this programme is to achieve level 4.

Outcomes:

The revised approach to improvement of management practices resulted in positive changes being sustained and ingrained over the long term.

The post-programme evaluation showed that all of the participants has applied the new skills and that:

  • 80% had continued to apply these 3 months after coaching
  • 60% were able to demonstrate an impact on the business through the use of the skills