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For a successful transformation engage your frontline employees

A leading global agricultural organisation was undergoing a cultural transformation to become a more agile, higher performing company. Leaders knew that to achieve the goal they needed to get all frontline employees onboard and role model the new behaviours.

To demonstrate things are changing the organisation focused on three priorities:

1. Listen and act

Leaders went out to all sites to ask frontline employees how they could improve two-way communications to ensure everyone felt involved in the cultural change and business changes. As a result, leaders committed to making changes to improve email access, systems and processes that would improve ways of working and open communication channels. This was a first step in role modelling the importance of listening and acting as a core attribute for the business moving forward.

2. Put in place one core channel

Following leaders site visits people said they wanted more connection to the top team, so they felt part of the organisation. The company put in place regular town hall meetings and broadcasts. All front-line staff had access to a town hall meeting or could view a broadcast in their time zone. Feedback illustrated employees felt far more connected to the organisation, the changes taking place and the management team.

3. Involve managers and brainstorm ideas

Leaders ran working session with managers to involve them in adopting and designing ideas that built on front line feedback and their first-hand insights on how the organisation could better meet the needs of front-line employees. The ideas were categorised according to priority and impact and a communication approach to inspire and motivate employees to support the broader cultural changes was implemented. Tools and support materials were provided to help managers have more open conversations and provide regular feedback to help inform decision making.

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