The world changes very fast and faster than organizations. The traditional hierarchical structures are best equipped for maintain the status quo through the control rather than following uncertainty. The key to face this phenomenon are people, especially employees, that are the ideal source to gather ideas and insights for new business models that have never existed before.
What is stable today in the companies must still be subject to continuous improvement and be subject to the question "Will we still need it tomorrow?". Hence to ensure this adaptive management, paths of Up-Skilling and Re-Skilling are fundamental for all employees, starting from Leaders.
With the same dedication with which Ipsen Group takes care for patients, seeking effective therapeutic solutions for unmet medical needs, the company takes care for its employees. “Everyone in Ipsen are talents”, to whom we can give adequate and diversified learning experiences and growth opportunities every day, through a differentiated approach. At the same time, “Everyone is responsible for their own development”, because professional growth cannot fail to be supported also by individual responsibility.
This picture is the “reason why”, as Leadership Team of Ipsen Italian affiliate, we decided to launch a journey named “Boost Feedback Culture”, involving all employees, to go beyond the development of the skills and combining personal and professional development. Ipsen Italy is a successful and developing company. The journey is therefore not part of a context of "problems to be solved", but rather of a context of "from good to great". In other words, the idea is to strengthen the determination to improve as a company and as individuals, to get involved every day with passion, to set in motion a culture of development based on the intrinsic motivations of people.
The objective of the project is to generate a “flywheel effect” that allows to go beyond extrinsic motivational levers, i.e. monetary incentives, complementing them with intrinsic motivation levers, that is the desire to improve on an individual and collective level every day, for the sake of doing it, as happens i.e. with the own favorite sport. In a context of intrinsic motivations, the feedback “naturally” becomes a precious asset, required by those who want to improve, just like those who spontaneously buy i.e. favorite sport lessons to improve the own level.
To maximize the flywheel effect, we decided to set two waves, the first one, from December 2020 to July 2021, dedicated to people responsible of people, that is Leadership Team and People Managers, and the second one for all the other employees, from September 2021 to March 2022. We started the first wave by taking MBTI test, with an individual restitution, followed by 4 sessions in which we talked about different topics:
- personality profiles: as we are all different, Leaders must learn to communicate and influence their teams based on the personality profile of each team member;
- intrinsic motivation levers that allow Leaders to increase motivation, engagement and effectiveness of their teams and the necessary mindset shift, from fix to growth mindset;
- trust, without which the corporate culture inhibits intrinsic motivational levers, keeping in mind that vulnerability and feedback are two powerful accelerators
After these 4 sessions, we run a survey, followed by 3 workshops. The objectives of the survey were:
- to follow and measure how well the participants translate their learning into practice, based on the observation of themselves and of other team members. Measuring explicitly is in itself a motivational lever to maintain momentum and attention to the "journey into the culture of feedback"
- to make explicit the "One Big Thing" (OBT), that is the most important change in individual behaviors, which could be the major contributor to the collective performance (always with the perspective of self-observation and of other team members).
With the results of the survey, we organized the workshops:
- to confirm the individual OBT and make it the central theme of the individual development plan 2021;
- to work with the immunity to change protocol to overcome immunities to change and make OBT possible;
- to measure progress both as regards the achievement of OBT objectives and in the "culture of feedback" path.
During the workshops, we set F2Fs to allow each person to receive feedback from a peer, with the aim to finalize the own OBT and sharing it with the team. Between the 1st and 2nd workshop, all participants attended to an individual coaching session to finalize their own map. The 3rd workshop was the final stage of the path and aimed to identify the team's OBT, working in sub-groups. The 2nd wave, for all the other colleagues, has been projected with the same contents of the 1st one and some adjustments due to the number of participants:
- focus more on receiving feedback than on providing feedback
- less group activities and more individual activities, leveraging technology
At this stage of the journey, I can say that the Key Success Factors are:
- consistency: the project has been received with great enthusiasm, because it responded to a real need;
- direct involvement of the Leadership Team that represented a very powerful reinforcement and acted as a stimulus for the entire organization;
- a “remote & smart” approach: of course, in presence, the effectiveness would have been greater, but by alternating methodological aspects with experiential aspects, as i.e. discussions, online surveys, role plays, tests (MBTI, Growth Mindset, Self-Efficacy) and teamwork, it has been possible to deliver a successful project