#CIPDMAP15 Rethinking the future of Workplace Learning

I’ve joined a seminar session with Andy Lancaster, Head of Learning at the CIPD.  As someone who’s passionate (and a bit excitable!) about what he does I’m looking forward to a lively energetic session!  And the first evidence of that – he’s going for a #periscope experiment to live stream on twitter!

A thank you from Andy for CIPD MAP inviting him and to the audience for being here on a Saturday with commitment to their learning.

He’s going to be talking about the next 5 years of workplace learning.  Andy’s been in learning for 25 years and see the world changing more than ever before.  Good old VUCA!

L&D must evolve to stay relevant as tech evolves.  Flexible working – the standard 9-5 day, 5 day week, is reducing more and more.  Day courses will decline with this.  Digby Jones of the CBI is saying we’ll all have at least 7 jobs in our careers.  Learning can’t stay the same.

And yet we still have classrooms that resemble Victorian school rooms – based in a time when there were few resources and relied on 1 person at the front with the book / knowledge.

Andy’s sharing his experiment with How-Old.net.  He came up at 43 (he’s happy, his age starts with a 5) and his friend came out at 13.  He’s asking the delegates to estimate the average age of the people on their tables.  Who said average age was 40? 50? Further into 50’s?  So this room is around 45 – this is a consistent theme for Andy at conferences when he’d done this before.  He’s working on retiring about 67 which means we have about 20 years left of career.  How much has changed n the last 20 years – so how much will change in the next??

1 in 5 under 5’s access the internet every day.  These people will be in the workplace before we all retire.

Using #MAP15Predict – what will be the learning-based headline on People Management in 10 years’ time? – “Learner Chip Upgrade” > “What’s your robot colleague going to teach you this week?” > “Where’s the human gone?” > “Hollogram Horrors” > “No Offices”

We’re in a changing, disorientating period at work.  Andy has 10 shifts for workplace learning – he sees it as a Carrot issue, not a Stick issue.  We need to think forward about where things are going.  Minimise threat response of change, or removal of the safe and familiar for ourselves and learners.

Learning Shift 1 – BUSINESS not L&D Priorities – the future of learning has to be about a focus on business performance and how the learning we provide is relevant to the org strategy.  Cant just offer a suite of options anymore.  To do this we need to be more like consultants.  This is seen in 70% of the top orgs already – ‘what do we need to fix?’

Learning Shift 2 – we’ll be informed by metrics, not guesses – e.g. retailer’s loyalty cards, fit bits, mobiles with location trackers, Google have developed a contact lens to measure glucose levels for diabetics.  We need to be informed by data to make informed decisions.  Only 1 in 5 are currently doing this currently!

Learning Shift 3 – Science underpinning learning approach – neuroscience is telling us that a lot of what we’ve been doing is good, but now we have scientific evidence for this stuff.  We can now go to those who value research, with research.  Only 1 in 5 using science at the mo.

Learning Shift 4 – Curator-concierge not just creator – 50% of content is developed from scratch.  Plus we’ve got an explosion of info online.  Whatever you’re writing will be available online.  Instead of re-creating the wheel every single time, curate content for people, bring it to others, point people and signpost people to where they can find things that will meet their needs.

Learning Shift 5 – user-choice not prescription – retail knows we need personalisation.  Learners also want this – and organisations like to sheep-dip because it’s simple and easy and controllable.  Learners learn through different methods in their personal lives and we need to bring this into the work world. Links back to curation – getting content from learners and making that available / pointing others to that.  Two-way.

Learning shift 6 – social not just formal – people watching from afar by taking learning online grows the connection and allows physical barriers to not matter anymore.  And think about social settings so learners get the chance to connect as humans.  Of top 10 learning tools, 7 are social, top is Twitter.

Learning Shift 7 – Just in time in the flow not delayer – waiting 3 months for a course isn’t good enough.  Things will have moved, the need will have changed by then.

Learning shift 8 – Bite size, not just feast – we would stuff people full of content in a day to maximise the opportunity of getting people together.  Not good for brains!  We need to make this bite size – lunchtime learnings, breaksfast briefings, short bits here and there. 75% of people now learn on the way to work.

Learning Shift 9 – Digital not just face to face – Face to face is great and human connection is important to us –  and we can’t make this work all the time anymore – time and resources don’t allow, and why should we when digital learning can support us – like #periscope today.  Make learning available to more people more easily.

Learning Shift 10 – Measuiing Value Not Volume – it is NOT about bums on setas – what we help people learn needs to be relevant to the business and we need to be able to show the difference we believe this is making to the business.  It’s can be hard to make a direct correlation but we can measure a number of indicators to give a rounded view.

Andy’s asking everyone to rate themselves 1 to 10 on these to spot their gaps.

He’s hearing that HR and L&D are shifting more and more on this and that sometimes it’s the business / senior leaders who are resistant to change – it feels scary and risky.  This is where the roe of consultant comes in where we provide options, broaden mindsets, bring examples and evidence of where this stuff’s been done before successfully.

Creatures metamorphosise without even realising it!  Think caterpillar.  They just do it.  It happens in the natural word because if the creature stays in that existence there’s more probability of dying.  Tadpoles change into frogs at different paces by sensing their environment and whether it’s right t change.  We’ll all change at different rates

CIPD are providing more online learning – their CIPD Level 5 in L&D got 18 people in 2013/14 and the online one now has a cohort of 220 (first one got 58 people)!  People from round the world can access – fantastic opening of the opportunity to more!

Insights from audience questions – future learning isn’t all about tech – maintain social, give knowledge one way, maintain social/interaction/debate/discussion in another. Keep learning blended – some employees won’t have the skills or access to tech to engage with this in the same way.  Play the role of consultant to help leaders become aware of the different options to an all day course, the stories and benefits seen by other orgs, the benefit for your org – ideally not just about cost/resources saving.  Find new ways to measure the impact of learning – bums on seats definitely won’t work with this.

Final thought – this is moving fast.  CIPD is tracking these 10 key shifts that have been hared today.  We now all need to think about how we shift from the old ways to these future-focussed ways.  Your learners will love you for embracing some of these new things.

This post has been live-blogged from #CIPDMAP15.  I’ve done my best to represent the content accurately and fairly but some errors may exist.  Most of it is the speakers’ content and I aim to show the bits that are my opinion.


#CIPDMAP15 A Professional Approach to Development

First up for the 2015 Midlands Area Partnership Event is Louise Fisher, HR Director of Xerox Europe, talking about a professional approach to development.

Louise is going to talk about her career and she’s going to share what the CIPD is doing and has done to help everybody here with their careers.

Louise’s Career

Spent in retail management at the start.  Louise learnt so much about business and making money – from high street fashion – leartn about speedy decision making.  Next a business that had a valued brand that actually wnet on the balance sheet.

Sector most enjoyed in early career was hotel industry – thought retail was tough until worked there.  365 days a year.  Lots of learning about scheduling and rostering.  And great opportunities for holidays.

Having dne management training, Louise then moved into PErsonnal and stayed there ever since but specialised in L&D, Mgmt dvlpmt, Org dvlpmt.  She took risks with her career choices – she went to different sectors, did different roles – you learn so much by getting out of the familiar.

She regrets never working abroad, learn a language and be immersed in a whole different culture.

Louise’s qualification was the IPM which had a lot of basis in psychology and human behaviour.  Great knowledge to gain early and to help in her roles.  Then in the 90’s she did a masters degree – another injection of knowledge and insight to apply back at work.

Louise is now the chair of the CIPD.  In the 80’s and 90’s she sat on a branch committee that positively influenced her day job.  Then she was appointed as a board member of the CIPD.  For the first few months she behaved like an HR person when in fact what they needed was the focus on the governance of the charity.  She was also on the audit committee for 6 years.  All giving a completely different experience than she would ever have gained from a normal day job.

Benefits of volunteering with CIPD – shows flexibility, commitment, desire to learn, a breadth of experience and knowledge.

When at the start of her career Louise felt frustrated because she felt she had lots more she could do.  and she did but she needed to become more mature, to take more time to stop and reflect.  She did this in her 4th year in this role to consolidate – this frustrated her but it was the right thing.  Gave her time to think broader than the day job.

Being a director was an huge eye opener being out of the day to day.

Louise believes every HR person should have a specialism in one of the HR disciplines.  Stands you in good stead.  Underpinning her’s was L&D and it enabled her to be more strategic, stepping away from the reactive day-to-day to think bigger, to research, to think, to gain time to make conscious choices and to work to a longer time frame than just ‘what’s happening today’.

Louise has spent time as the No2 to a couple of HR Directors and enjoyed it, had a lot of freedom, was responsible for lots of interesting projects.  And always wondered if she could do a No1.  She did her first HRD role in a printing role, as a 1200 employee business she was bored after 6 months.  So she then started to work with each of the MDs within the business to help them think more strategically about their people.

She then went back into corporate – a very different environment to a small privately owned business – both helpful and demonstration of flexibility.

Plus, as before, Louise advocates getting voluntary experience – and for us to encourage that in those around us where we work.  Her plan is to move into non-exec director roles as she gets towards the end of her ‘rat race’ working life.

Her advice – get out with managers, with sales people, with customers.  Learn about their worlds, broaden your horizons.  Louise recommends getting out of HR for a while to gain a completely different experience.

Tips on successful career management – (1) Prove you’re valuable, flexible, fun (2) Take some risks – risks that are a risk for you (we’re all different) (3) Get a voluntary job to develop outside of work (4) Get customer-facing experience and spend time in sales – learn the business inside out (5) Your career is YOUR responsibility and nobody elses! (6) Network – plagiarism is productivity and goodness knows we need to improve UK Productivity!  Someone else here will be doing what you need to do and can hep you – and you can maybe help them or someone else #payitforward

CIPD Professions for the Future (PFF)

Louise has used the CIPD framework to inform her activity in Xerox –

  1. Insights on Changing Context – where’s your industry / market going, what does that mean for people?
  2. Science of Human and Organisational Behaviour – understanding this so we can motivate and engage more effectively
  3. HR and Learning Processes, Practices and Policies – how can technology help you to make processes simple and efficient so people aren’t spending time there.  The ore global the org, the more essential this is
  4. Business, Commercial Insights and Analysis – know your business, get into the stuff the CIPD are doing and saying around HR analytics, how do you analyse data and WHAT WILL YOU USE IT FOR (my emphasis! – a pet hate about not doing data for data’s sake)

So why is PFF important?

CBW&WL (Championing Better Work and Working Lives) requires good HR and ppl dvlpmt  > but good HR is context-specific > move from prescriptive best practice to broader principles > but it takes time to apply those principles in practice > so we need to build and maintain professionalism in HR > so HR remain trusted & credible.

The aims of CIPD membership – differentiated member proposition, promote HR as a conscious career choice, provide relevant support and to grow all levels of membership.

What’s been done in 2014/15 –

  • Work
  • Whistle blower advice line
  • My CPD Map
  • New networks
  • Career support – Career hub
  • Student bursaries – first come first served to new Level 3 foundation students and <£25k a year. Covers tuition and membership fees.
  • Student recruitment activity
  • Member research – migration, zero hours contracts, valuing your talent, CIPD Manifesto for Work, sustainable performance, neuroscience
  • CIPD voice in the media (online press, radio, TV)
  • +2.8% on membership
  • +16.7% on student recruitment
  • £900k investment in new activity

And the offer for fellows – focus on professionalism, more strategic content, work journal, fellow networks, opportunity to give back, mentoring, input into research, integrating a fellows policy group.

What the CIPD are doing to help you get value from your membership and help you get in and get on in the HR profession –

Needed to retain people after their study, give people reasons to go up through levels of membership, make HR a credible career for life.

CIPD are looking at the touchpoints where they can connect with people about joining HR.

They’re using website – plotr – like old fashioned careers advice but that’s actually helpful!  Takes about half  an hour but good fun and informative.

CIPD are going into schools and colleges to talk to students, they’re connecting with people in different places, they’re offering webinars for career advice, they’re running a mentoring scheme for people in HR, working with Penna to help people back into HR if been out for 6 months or more.

And more to come e.g. MOOCs, development in CPD area. Piloting 2 tools at the moment.

Final word – network, network, network!  See #cipdmap15 for a pic of Louise’s top tips if you’re not sure where to start with this (11am 3/10).

This post has been live-blogged from #CIPDMAP15.  I’ve done my best to represent the content accurately and fairly but some errors may exist.  Most of it is the speakers’ content and I aim to show the bits that are my opinion.

#CIPDOD15 Aligning Teams and Building Collaboration for Performance

Final piece goes to Rob Jones from Crossrail and Ally Salisbury from Sheppard Moscow.

Building a sustainable culture of collaboration in Europe’s largest infrastructure project and creating alignment across boundaries and conflicting agendas.

Focus for last 3 years has been creating space for new tracks and stations – finished tunnelling in June this year!


Have an integrated client delivery team – 1600 people needing to be aligned to 1 set of objectives.  Those 1600 people work for 3 different partners who work for 9 different employers.  Different bonuses, different performance mgmt. processes, etc.  Our aim isn’t to align systems and processes.  It is a challenge and it continues to be a challenge.  And then we have 27 contractors and 10,000 people working for them!

It is complex.  We talk about the United States of Crossrail.  The CEO is the President.  Helpful to have an analogy to make this size of challenge real and understandable.


Needed people in the OD team, needed someone to help Rob make sense of it for himself.  Found support in Ally from Sheppard Moscow.


Investing time and energy in understanding the context before trying to be understood – spending time finding out what the questions were.  What help is required and what will success look like?

There’s an overwhelming complexity of politics and power.  Some want a safe railway, some want to make money.


The big milestones were really clear but the smaller milestones are where conflict and misunderstanding have come.  They’ve worked on trying to build trust and unlock entrenchment.  Helping people focus on what they have in common rather than on their differences.  Tried to use simple interventions to allow vulnerabilities to be shown and trust to grow.

If you talk to the engineers about what we do they’ll acknowledge that the soft stuff is hard to do.  Have asked questions like what do you care about and why to get them out of their trenches.

The Audible Gasp

Didn’t tell people their issues & challenges – they discovered they were very similar but at different ends of it.  Took 2 project teams, working at different ends of the same hotel, 2 independent facilitators – very important especially for the Joint Venture team.  Did an exercise around looking to ourselves first – what do we need to do to get better at what we’re doing?, what are we doing as a team to get in the way of our partners?, what would we like them to do differently to improve their team effectiveness?

Brought the teams together for the afternoon and each team read the other flipcharts and they were amazed – an audible gasp – that what they’d said in Q2 was the answer for Q3 of the other team.


No one party can solve an issue – it needs 2 or more every time.  Their aim was to get common understanding of the issues and to give permission to ask for help.  Engineers’ natural position is to be right and to assert for their position.

Safe to Fail Environment

These people understand how to deliver, everything is a to-do list.  Getting them to take themselves out of that to take time, courage, be vulnerable and share things is a big challenge.  Rob realised he was taking the risk in it failing so they didn’t have to.  He needed to give them permission to not be right first time.  Creating a place where they can explore and have space to do that.

Elephant in the Room

Helping teams t admit there is an elephant was one of the biggest things – the need to be right was very prevalent.  To see it and decide together what they were going to do about it.  Less comfortable with climate & relationship – taking it away from process and task.  Goal to get this stuff out rather than being talked about at the coffee machine or down the pub.

Used pre-interviews in one to one or small focus group to identify elephants safely and confidentiality ahead of the group interventions.  Accelerated the openness and diagnosis felt shared.

Wicket Rolling

The background work was essential to success and included helping leaders to take responsibility for the effectiveness for their teams – they had to be the driver even if we were in the car with them.

Know When to Fold

Takes courage to realise the hand you’ve been dealt with isn’t right and you need to step away to take a different angle and come back in.  Sometimes it was hard to get the right people in the room.  Sometimes sponsorship was patchy.  Some leadership capability was low.  Rob had to go back to the business to challenge whether the right people were on the bus.

Scar Tissue

We were new, they all knew each other – worked together for years, if not decades.  Huge consistency in the contracting industry.  Often the issues dealing with were from 5-10 years ago, nothing to do with Crossrail, issues of corporate reputation rather than individual – they did this to me.  Had to clear the crap out of the wounds to allow them to close over and start healing.


We’re not doing it for them but they get used to having us around as a sounding board to help them frame their problems.  Been vital to stick to terms of engagement – the eyeball agreement about what we’re here to do – and when that’s done – get out!  Unles it’s a fresh problem the ‘client’ needs to face up to this for themselves.  We aren’t there as a sticky plaster, they need to feel capable to take this forward.


The people who need the most help are the ones least likely to ask for it.  Important to ensure not just the needy to get the help and important to differentiate between needs and wants – what’s at the root of this?  Get the reality before intervening.  Go out and find where the issues are.


Rob and Ally have become effective partners by communicating openly and frequently.  Ally’s previous experience is that the internal partner gets the inside track.  Can create a dynamic about vulnerability, side-lined.  Got round that with lots of coffees, lots of trust both ways, feeding back to each other – work by Proceed Until Apprehended! (Stolen with pride from Doug Shaw).

The Long Run

It’s not a sprint, it feels like a hard slog, it’s not easy to train for – felt like this in the early days.  Lots of emotional energy and investment and not getting much back.  Kept just putting one foot in front of the other.  Small successes build more success and credibility.  People now call on them to go to other teams.


Versatile toolkit – team coaching, conflict resolution, goal alignment – we don’t lead with any of the theories.  Sometimes because when you get in there it’s not what you’ve planned for anyway.


Key to achieving has been sponsorship – if you haven’t got it – pull stumps and get some

Keep it Simple Stupid

This project isn’t about OD – it’s about clear vision and leaders that can engage people and manage the environment and system – step back and keep it simple.

This post has been live-blogged from #CIPDOD15.  I’ve done my best to represent the content accurately and fairly but some errors may exist.  Most of it is the speakers’ content and I aim to show the bits that are my opinion.

#CIPDOD15 Doing Digital OD

Karen Dumain from the NHS Leadership Academy.

Talking about achieving cultural shift through tech – how can practitioners make use of tech?

Karen’s background in Behavioural Science and feels like OD is coming home.  Joined the NHS a bit over 2 years ago.  Karen and Paul Taylor lead ‘Do OD’.  They link with the Leadership Academy to spread OD capability across and above the system of the organisation.  Focus on Dialogic OD.

Context for NHS – the world is complex, decreasing resources, higher expectations of patients, changing demographics, a need to shift to prevention rather than cure – how do we respond to these and to the need to change?  Digital is just a constant for the young people coming into the workforce now and in the coming years.  If you’re talking about ‘getting online’ then you’re behind the curve!

NHS – worlds largest publicly funded health system, provides for 54 million people, a patient every 36 hours.

Do OD focus on putting theory into practice – Connect > Share > Learn > Grow.  Paul and Karen hold the frame, they’re the container.  They work with the NHS OD community – the system – to understand their challenges to create new solutions & resources together.  They enable conversations at all different places and levels.

7 challenges came back from the OD Community with Culture, Values and Behaviours as the top 3 – what do we do with these, how do we measure the difference, how will it impact patients?  Looking ahead to 2015-16 they’re focusing on Systems Thinking, Building OD Capability, Integration, Culture Change, Evaluating OD.

Now a focus on Culture…..What can we do to evolve culture?

At the same time that the NHS was being celebrated in the Olympics opening ceremony, the Mid Staffs investigation was coming out.  There was a call to action about changing culture.  Conversations about the culture wanted in the NHS – Happy, Caring, Compassion…as a few key words.

When they started Do OD they asked for people to put their trusts forward to share what they’d already done (with acknowledgement that it was a beginning rather than a ‘job done’ situation), and others who wanted to be pilots for new stuff.

People thought they’d get a magic tool or solution but quickly realised it wasn’t that.  The dialogic OD approach used was underpinned by Appreciative Inquiry. A move away from Diagnostic, linear OD.  Also used Bushe – What we think > leads to Decisions and Actions > that evoke Shared attitudes & assumptions > which forms Culture.

Digital came out in an emergent way from the conversations and they started to develop an app (launched in Nov 14).  Anybody can download the app and it allows you to dip in and out because everyone’s starting point will be different.  You can go in at level of You, Team, Org, Partners & Stakeholders.  When you go into one of these areas there are questions to prompt thinking and conversations.  Based on your answers it summarises where you’ve made progress and where there might be more to do.  Recent update – Space to Think cards to enable creative thinking.

With over 1000 downloads, just starting to do formal evaluation but informal has been very positive – Practitioners have said very helpful.

This post has been live-blogged from #CIPDOD15.  I’ve done my best to represent the content accurately and fairly but some errors may exist.  Most of it is the speakers’ content and I aim to show the bits that are my opinion.

#CIPDOD15 Aligning Org Capability and Culture to the Org Plan

Inji Duducu, Group People Director of Benenden.

Talking about using Appreciative Inquiry to identify the org’s true values, and developing engagement and comms strategy to sustain commitment across the org.

Benenden is a healthcare provider (mutual, not-for-profit) – they’re a single product, single price healthcare provider.  80% of spending member funds is finding a fast route to diagnosis via private.  Do lots of cataracts, varicose veins,… and offer helplines at a single flat rate at £8.45 a month with no restrictions – the most under-priced product ever!  And available for corporate schemes 🙂

Their challenge?  Used to only be able to join if in public sector or civil service (started for the Post Office originally) people would sign up and they easily got to a million members.  More recently had a decline in members so now about 900k – and aging.  First answer was that anyone could join Benenden.  Concern at the time was that they’d be swamped with interest.  But of course nobody had heard of them and their product was unusual.

2 years ago, new CEO, acknowledgement that open access hasn’t worked.  Talked about partnerships, new channels, new products…. In 10 years time we’ll be unrecognisable.

Inji joined for that reason – 108 year old business, average length of service 25 years  how do you take that org through that level of change?

When started, the strategy had been put in a bullet point list & left on people’s desks – it didn’t work! (Building blocks, New IT system, New product launch underway, First acquisition strategy underway, Hospital redevelopment signed off, Digital channel being built).

All this started or happening – and no thought to the people and how they fitted into this plan!

When Inji joined her challenge was to do 12 mths change in 6 – with an org that had never really changed.

Split the change into 3 buckets – 1 bucket of ‘how we do stuff’, shared services, structure.  1 of capability, roadmap (what you’ll need for your team in next 3-5 yrs), behaviours & l’ship capability (much more needed than technical knowledge).  And 1 of culture, values, action plan.

A very friendly helpful culture.  If in 2024 we’ve become just another insurance company then we’ve failed.  Our culture is special.  Understanding what really makes us special was essential to future success.

There was low leadership visibility – e.g. the leadership team hadn’t been involved at all in the launch of new insurance at the time when Inji joined.  They’re now front & centre, quarterly update on progress from CEO, any chance to get them visible & approachable – servant leadership e.g. a summer party with leaders welcoming people, handing out drinks, etc.  Recognised & appreciated by the team.

Big focus on celebrating successes – much to celebrate.  They’ve won Most Trusted Healthcare Provider 5 years in a row!  Entirely down to the people.  Don’t take it for granted.  Really want to be that & strive for it.

These things don’t have to take a lot of money – the symbolism of directors handing out pizza and saying thank you to people face to face has a big impact.

Values has always been evident as the heart of the business.  But they didn’t feel special – Integrity, Respect, Professional Service Excellence, Respond flexibly and positively to change, Fair & supportive employer of staff.

To capture the ‘specialness’ they did workshops with volunteers to explore the future culture they want – and the values that are fixed in their heritage.  Used Appreciative Inquiry to understand the values – talked about why people joined, what their high points have been, what their most audacious dreams are for the org.  Never fail to be surprised at the power of focussing on the positive.

AI – a change methodology used to focus on the positive rather than problem solve.  And believing the system has the knowledge, insights, resources needed to create what’s needed.

AI > Discovery – Dream – Design – Destiny.

Their values are now – Care, Mutuality, Sustainability, Wellbeing.

Nobody needs to be convinced of these.  They recognise them as what Benenden stand for.  They don’t need ‘selling in’.

As part of review of Performance Mgmt they’ve created a Behavioural Framework – How we work with each other, How we honour our heritage, How we work through change, How we deliver results.  Each has a summary statement e.g. We respect, trust & value the contribution from everyone and we inspire others through great leadership.  Then 4 statements below that e.g. We communicate openly & honestly & have a positive impact on others.

When thinking about alignment, not sure you can get everything absolutely aligned, but can gradually shift one part at a time.  Inji’s experience is that it takes about a year to have people realise things have shifted.  And that at the point you are so bored hearing yourself say the same thing, is about the time that it’s really filtered out into the org.

There’s been huge change in nearly all people practices & policies in the last 18 months including making the call centre like an actual call centre – knowing when calls are coming in, flexing staff, knowing how much cover you need & have at any time… etc.  Rather than drip feed they waited and packaged it up into a picture (co-created by people, not briefed by Inji) to communicate it – people respond better to images than words.  Gave facilitators of the story some training (just an hour) so they could take others through it.  Part of that role was about listening to what these things meant to them, to ask questions, to share concerns.

Achieved a 5% uplift in survey results like understanding the business plan and where I fit in it.

In the CEOs ‘town hall meetings’ people now ask how we’re doing in certain areas rather than waiting to be told.

Learnings > Communication + Co-creation + Celebration = More capacity for change than you might ever have thought!

This post has been live-blogged from #CIPDOD15.  I’ve done my best to represent the content accurately and fairly but some errors may exist.  Most of it is the speakers’ content and I aim to show the bits that are my opinion.

#CIPDOD15 Beyond OD Orthordoxy: dialogic and networked change approaches

This is with Prof Cliff Oswick of Cass Business School at City Uni London.

It’s going to be a fairly quick look at moving away from problem-centred change and to discursive approaches to OD.  Shifting from top-down to emergent, network forms of change.

Traditional vs Dialogic vs Emergent OD

1900s to present – orgs as machines.  1960’s to present – orgs as systems.  1980s to present – interpretive meaning-making systems, 1990s to present – complex adaptive systems.  The last 2 acknowledge the complexity, subjectivity, emergent, chaotic nature of OD.

We’ve come to realise that it’s the discursive construction and context of something that frames what we think of it.  It’s how we frame the problem that matters.

New dialogic OD is solutions-driven, proactive & rhizomatic (that means non-linear!), generative, complex & emergent, abstract & intangible, multi-directional (not constrained by hierarchy).  In the past OD took a problem-centred, concrete & tangible, reactive, linear approach.

All new CEOs come into an org and restructure within 6 mths.  Even though they won’t really know enough about the best structure to create.  All you do is move the pieces around.  Mark their territory.  Prove to the shareholders that they’re ‘doing’ something.  We still like to hold onto tangible.  But who you report to doesn’t really matter.  The power isn’t located in the hierarchy.  However people are structured won’t change the culture.

If interested in OD practices – book recommendation – Dialogic OD: a theory of practice (G. R. Bushe)

Traditional OD – change as a scentific process, great for linear, tangible problems and solutions, top-down e.g. job design, teamwork and structural intervention

Dialogic / Diagnostic / Contemporary OD – change as a discursive process, emergent, fluid, focus on positive and future – always trying to create better e.g. AI, Future Search, World Café

Emerging OD – change as a political process, a neutral focus on change – what will be different now rather than what will be better in the future, turbulent & socially connected, change with employees e.g. Employee activism, Constructive deviance

Talking about a play where the audience can choose to follow different characters acting out different scenes which shows the characters for who they really are.  Doesn’t work now because people tweet it / text it / fb message it so the other audience members find out about the back story they’d never have found out about before.  Just like in work.  There’s nowhere to hide your true self!

Bottom-up is the way forward!  Hierarchy will become less important and leaders will emerge at all levels – they’ve always been there but they’ll now be overt.  Internal crowdsourcing with leaders facilitating the conversations (not heroically leading) will increase into the future.  Decisions made outside of the boardroom – engages and brings people with you. Co-creating change.  Viral change – start by infecting one or two until everyone’s caught the bug!

This post has been live-blogged from #CIPDOD15.  I’ve done my best to represent the content accurately and fairly but some errors may exist.  Most of it is the speakers’ content and I aim to show the bits that are my opinion.

#CIPDOD15 Creating an Enabling Mindset to Become Agile & Future-Focused

Steve Morton Head of People and OD at Virgin Money.

The VUCA got a mention!  *klaxon*  But yes, change is happening all the time, it’s just that it feels a lot faster these days.

We all have a different response to the word ‘change’.  As we do to most things in life.  We all have different baggage we bring based on previous experiences.

Steve likes to move away from ‘change’ and more into thinking about what you want to become – Virgin Money wants, and Steve says sincerely wants, to be a bank where everyone’s better off.  Steve has the CEO on his side, she really cares about what they do.

There was a key criteria to keep the language the same as change began – the language in Virgin Money is simple and transparent and that needed to be maintained.  Doing that helps maintain trust.

Monumental moment when Virgin Money and Northern Rock combined.  When Steve joined the language was still ‘heritage Northern Rock’ or ‘heritage Virgin Money’.  You can’t move forward until you accept those two things need to be something different in the future.

To support change requires consistency of words and actions to build trust and belief that this is really happening and that people believe in it.

At a big event with CEO announced that only 51% felt they got what they needed to do their job.  This was Steve’s challenge.  He took a standback, big approach to reflect a strategy that says everyone’s better off (EBO).

For leadership development they’ve got a social media platform to manage learning, invitations sent through the post, creating an experience for colleagues to make it feel EBO.  Role modelling what’s needed because creating an experience is what managers and their teams need to do for their customers – creating advocates of the brand in employees and customers.

Next step was thinking about developing talent.  The 9 box doesn’t fit with EBO.  He wanted a story to show an EBO approach that would include every single colleague and help them wherever they are.  They’ve got a 4 box and a circle model! – Core Performers – help them be the best they can be, Protect & Grow – key players, Honest Action – it’s just not working, Square Peg Round Hole – help back on track, Future Business Leaders – development stretch.  Whatever type of box-model you want to use, for me the key is the attitude towards the people in the boxes.  Respect for them and their needs.

They’ve brought in apprenticeships to help local and younger community.

Steve’s key – don’t talk up change – the word scares people.  Talk up the things that are most important to your org.  Talk about the reality in real language.

This post has been live-blogged from #CIPDOD15.  I’ve done my best to represent the content accurately and fairly but some errors may exist.  Most of it is the speakers’ content and I aim to show the bits that are my opinion.