FACILITATION

We are very experienced facilitators. Teams, loose-knit groups and communities benefit from our skill and independence as you
think the unthinkable, plan your actions and action your plans.

• strategising
• imagining the future
• leading change
• building a courageous collaborative team
• evolving a signature identity for your group
• resolving thorny issues
• transforming, aligning and ‘being’ the culture

We will talk with you about the business context and your aims.
It helps you to clarify your needs and shape the best approach from methodology to venue.

STORY
POST-ACQUISITION INTEGRATION AND CULTURE-BUILDING


Following major acquisitions of brand companies and distributors in the drinks business we faciliated and coached the senior executive team as it evolved its leadership and culture building initiative of a rapidly globalising business.

We worked in partnership with internal facilitators in designing and delivering hundreds of workshops worldwide to newly configured teams as they interpreted and action planned the changes for their locality and its relations with the centre.

We facilitated joint venture teams in South-East Asia – the sales and marketing operations of a strategic alliance between British and French principals of contrasting leadership and management style.


 

COMMENT: Facilitation skills are essential within a complex organisation development assignment as well as for ‘one-off’ meetings. The facilitator builds knowledge about the company and the trust of individuals and teams. This can be very powerful in adding value for the client. Familiarity needs to be handled responsibly.

‘Seamless facilitation of issues and behaviour.’ HR Director, International Consumer Brands

“GS built a remarkable level of trust with senior leaders…effective in ‘…effective in cross-cultural and joint venture dynamics….’ APAC Executive Committee

STORY
RUNNING A BUSINESS AS AN EXECUTIVE TEAM


An Asia Pacific subsidiary had been underperforming in an upbeat market. A new CEO noticed that the talented executives running the functions were over-siloed.

He asked us to facilitate senior executive team meetings in order to encourage the managers to rise above their functional role and become a team running the whole business.

This initiative took place during a culture change for the multinational worldwide. The CEO and the facilitator were able to leverage this as both context and toolkit for change

COMMENT: This is essentially an organisation development assignment in which the facilitator’s familiarity with the bigger multinational picture could be harnessed to help move the needle in the subsidiary. Regional managers are often responsible for several markets. We help the transition from micro management to a more leaderly approach sometimes combining facilitation and coaching.


STORY
CHANGE YET NOT ‘CHANGING’


The charismatic director of a department suddenly resigned leaving the community feeling bereft. The CEO told them he wouldn’t replace the director until the team learned more about

  • managing itself and
  • implementing the change coming down the line

After working with the team intermittently for several weeks Greg was asked to faciliate an off-site meeting where the CEO and the department would craft a future plan. Initially the atmosphere was very hostile. The faciliator made some observations about the gap between the team’s rhetoric and observed practices. His comments were initially rejected until picked up with passion by one member who suggested that the group went with the flow for a few minutes as if there was some truth in the facilitators comments. A coalition was born.


COMMENT: Facilitators need to be savvy about group dynamics. Deep listening, judging the moment to intervene and not reacting defensively to aggressive attacks on her/ his role or credibility. Resistance is part of change. They need to look for strengths and coalition opportunities within the group, to kick ‘being stuck’ and to foster ownership.

STORY
TEAM CHARTER


The manager of a talented young team responsible for creating content for an online education service was concerned about co-operation and communication among its members. The context required a better balance between individual creative effort and collaboration.  Tension between a team leader and a direct report had been making waves in an open plan set-up. Following conflict resolution with the two members, the team met offsite in order to evolve a Charter to

  • map a process framework for future operations
  • codify agreements about team values and  behaviour
  • align the team with the values and change agenda of the organisation    


COMMENT:
Team charters need to be brought to life and to fuel action or they will just sit in a computer file. Facilitation can help a team gel, discuss the difficult stuff as well as have fun and develop a signature identity. We encourage and support ownership by everyone involved, mutual appreciation, creativity and discipline when it comes to action.

STORY
REFRAMING TRAINING AS A BUSINESS INITIATIVE


An American IT multinational had introduced a worldwide initiative to improve the quality of processes across departments and into the supply chain. Sales and Marketing executives in the UK operating company cynically rejected this as a centrally imposed mechanistic training package. The challenge led to an assignment with three fundamental objectives:

Presentation and Status

• to re-craft and reposition the ‘package’ as a valuable set of tools for the achievement of business rather than training objectives

Politics

• to ensure that the initiative was championed by the Board

Capability

• to coach the delivery team in facilitation skills and to develop their organisational savvy so that they could build on growing Board support.

This bore fruit in terms of a comprehensive take-up of the toolkit in the UK business.


COMMENTFacilitation is sometimes embedded in a more complex OD assignment. Our role involved  re-defining the context as a business initiative and not a training exercise, building up the faciliation skills of the client team.

STORY
HEALTH CARE


Following an untoward incident resulting in a patient’s death after routine surgery we were invited to work with the operating suites team to provide two key services:

  • To support theatre staff who were deeply affected by the incident
  • To work with the theatre community as change agents to help them introduce working practices that would reduce the risk of a recurrence

The atmosphere was very political, surgeons, anaesthetists, nurses and managers seeking to both control activity within their specialisms and collaborate.

A positive outcome – role ambiguity was identified around the reporting lines for technicians to surgeons and anaesthetists and this was resolved.


COMMENT: Organisational politics thrives in most environments no matter how unusual. Our credibility relied on helping everyone in an even-handed way get through as a community and mobilise their existing knowledge and strength to find a solution.

“Greg challenged us to think about how we would feel and how others would feel during change. Greg made us think broadly about what will happen and brought the theory to life.”

Head of Commercial Operations and Transformation GSK Asia Pacific