Author Archives: Birgit Zacher-Hanson

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Agency for Adults with Developmental Disabilties Enhances Leadership Capacity

A behavioral facility for adults with developmental disabilities was faced with increasing demands for higher quality services at lower costs. Competing priorities among different departments and a reduction in resources placed exceptional challenges on the agency’s ability to perform at its desired level of excellence.

Key issues:

  1. Breakdowns in communication and execution
  2. Lack of clarity, processes still needing to be defined
  3. Role confusion and missing standards

Key leadership opportunities:

  1. Develop a clear vision for the organization
  2. Communicate and execute the mission more effectively
  3. Better define who is responsible for what and who is authorized to make what decisions
  4. Constitute as a team, commit to a shared goal and own the results jointly
  5. Delegate or “let go” without disengaging


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Global Medical Publishing Company Embraces New HR Software

The Client is a global medical publishing company with a presence in 24 countries and currently employs 7,000 journal editors as well as 70,000 editorial board members and 200,000 reviewers.

Company faced challenge to fully embrace the electronic age in an increasingly competitive global market place. To remain the global market leader in the industry, the client had to make considerable changes in working practices and skill sets. What was called for was a commitment at the top of the organization to develop the change strategy and drive it forward within each leader’s business area.

Heads-Up Performance was invited by a European consulting firm to co-facilitate breakout sessions with global managers in Europe and the US.

The key deliverables were to help identify the ‘live’ Cases for Change that would support the overall global change program and ensure that managers have the requisite skills to manage the change for themselves and their teams.

Results

The client gained a different perspective on change and transition that resulted in significant increases in engagement and buy-in.

The intervention reached 400 Leaders of Change worldwide, who in partnership with the European consulting firm were able to develop and deliver a blended support model of webinar, workshop and coaching worldwide.


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Industry Leader Undergoes Culture Change to Embrace New Software

NJ based air-conditioning company purchased newly designed software. Adoption process was slow and created operational breakdowns, which in turn negatively affected morale and productivity.

 

Background

Company purchased software without the input from the people who were using it on a daily basis. They made assumptions about training needs that turned out to be flawed. And they rolled out the new software without a plan on how to implement the change effectively. As a result, people were not adequately trained in the system and didn’t really understand why they had to change to a new system in the first place. Consequently, they did not trust in the capabilities of the new system and did not learn how to use it effectively.

The culture was turning into victim culture where everything was being blamed on the software and the people who had purchased it. People retaliated by taking short cuts and entering data erroneously or leaving the responsibility for performing their tasks to others.

 

Approach

We facilitated several dialogue sessions between management and the software users to assess the actual gaps with the software. During those sessions we encouraged the parties to listen to each other and what was discovered is that the biggest obstacle was not the software itself but the gaps that existed in how it was rolled out and how people were in relationship to it as a result of that.

We coached key players to take responsibility for closing the gaps by asking for additional training and software modification.

Impact

The software manufacturer is making modifications that will more specifically meet the needs of the client. The company is offering a more robust training program. And opinions, perspectives and insights of those using the program are now being heard on a consistent basis which has led to a greater degree of clarity, buy-in, and productivity.