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Jump Ahead of the Curve

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Continuum Consulting Services LLC

The Challenge

The leadership team of a major corporation received feedback each year from an organization-wide employee engagement survey. They immediately put into place solutions and initiatives they thought would address issues surfaced by employee feedback. When employees were surveyed again, there was no improvement in the scores, even after leaders expended a tremendous amount of time, effort and resources.

Continuum Solution

Continuum partnered with a cross-functional internal leadership team to explore the team and culture dynamics and options for change. We discovered that when prior survey results were delivered, the leadership team themselves interpreted the data and designed and implemented their own solutions

Frontline staff were never asked to help clarify feedback, offer solution options or engage in change efforts directly. In other words, the “employee engagement fix” never engaged the employees themselves.  Also, no processes assessed in real time whether the efforts were actually addressing needs or making a difference.

Continuum consultants designed an engagement campaign kicked off by a series of focus groups to engage people three to four levels down in the organization. Ten feedback groups were conducted to gain understanding and solicit direct staff recommendations. Each group included a welcome from the site head, education about current initiatives and requests from leaders for feedback on specific questions and issues.

The groups then collaborated, working to assimilate all feedback from the individual sessions and craft a series of recommendations for the senior leadership team. 

Continuum coached focus group members in design and presentation of the material to be of maximum benefit for the leadership team, which met directly with the group representatives during a facilitated retreat to receive feedback. The strategic retreat included small group discussions where leaders and frontline staff were able to openly discuss challenges and options.

Outcome

The discussions were so successful that focus group representatives were asked to form a leadership advisory group tasked with meeting monthly with a representative from leadership to ensure that recommendations were acted upon. They also crafted an ongoing assessment and feedback process.

With Continuum’s guidance, the focus group process turned into a leadership development program.

Results from the next employee survey indicated an increase in all key indicators. The company decided to institute the process into a yearly program with a focus on employee input and recommendations to drive the annual goals process.