Using 5 Conversations to help embed corporate values
Our client’s needs:
Ferring launched their Leadership Principles in 2017, starting with the leadership team. They wanted to find a way to use an experiential approach to rollout and embed these values throughout the organisation. Having previously used 5 Conversations for a different programme, they felt that it was a really good fit for Ferring and would help to bring their Leadership Principles to life through everyday conversations.
Leadership Principles and 5 Conversations have been rolled out across the organization, spearheaded by the Technical Operations Division which asked The Oxford Group to train 18 internal trainers so they could deliver 5 Conversations across the division. They started by training the leadership teams on each of their manufacturing sites in 2019, and have since been delivering the programme to other people managers.
Ferring’s Leadership Principles are:
A strong example of how the Leadership Principles programme worked is at FSMP, one of Ferring’s manufacturing sites in the Technical Operations Division.
Initially, we took the top 130 leaders for the whole Technical Operations Division through a 5 Conversations taster session and then followed up with a Train the Trainer session for the individuals who would be responsible for rolling out the programme to the rest of the division. After that, it was over to them, although we were on hand to help provide support and guidance.
This is a programme that has had a lot of support from the FSMP leadership team and there was a very clear plan working top-down within the site, with a focus on getting engagement at each stage before moving on.
They started with a masterclass for the senior leadership team who were then tasked to start using 5 Conversations with their direct reports. 5 Conversations was introduced to the Management Team in a half-day workshop a few months later and the leadership team gave them each a copy of the 5 Conversations book to read.
A couple of months later again, 5 Conversations was introduced to the rest of the site as part of the Leadership Principles event, a big team-building day for all employees. The managers who had been through the earlier workshop were group and activity facilitators on the day.
The day kicked off with a presentation from Leadership Principles employee ambassadors and was then followed by their site director, Esteban Uriarte, who introduced 5 Conversations. Conversation 1 (Establishing a trusting relationship) was then used as an icebreaker.
Following this, participants were split into mixed teams for three different hour-long workshops on each of three key themes chosen on the basis of findings from Ferring’s employee engagement survey. These themes were Trust, Communication, and Who does what and 5 Conversations was linked in throughout where relevant. Following each workshop there was a debrief session.
Each group had facilitators who stayed with them for the whole day as they moved through the different activities. Their role was to observe, take notes and participate in the debrief. All facilitators had been given training in advance of the day to give them a refresher of 5 Conversations and how to present themselves in an authentic way. They were also given a guide with questions for each workshop linked to emotions and behaviours that would help them facilitate the debriefs.
The organisers also created a booklet for participants which accompanied the day and gave them the opportunity to take notes for three reflective questions to go through after each workshop. The booklet also prompted them to track their emotions throughout the day. It was stressed that this booklet was confidential to the participant so that they could be completely honest about themselves.
The day was then wrapped up with Conversation 3 – showing genuine appreciation.
Having set the tone and the expectations with all of the site employees, the management team then followed a month later the full-day 5 Conversations workshop.