A Well-Oiled Machine

A small, growing company (ABC, inc. for our case study purposes) contacted GOFORWARD to help address multiple people issues:

  1. the need to hire additional staff for a new, more technical product line – new technology, new skills, new people - all at once
  2. the need to turn around a few low performers, who would also be working with the new technology
  3. developing a new supervisor to lead a somewhat challenging team

GOFORWARD met with the HR Manager and Department Manager to better understand the current challenges related to the new product line and to gather more information about the necessary skills and behaviors required to be successful in the new environment. In addition, we sought information on how the low performers and challenging team had been managed to date, including review of pertinent documentation. This was a structured meeting, where specific questions were asked and addressed in order for both the client and GOFORWARD to have a shared understanding of the true needs and desired outcomes.

The GOFORWARD team has extensive experience in HR, organizational development, technical leadership, and process improvement. We partnered across our own team to design and deliver the following customized interventions for ABC:

  1. To address the needs for new employees with new skills:
    1. Created new role descriptions and success profiles to obtain a clear picture of the skills, capabilities and behaviors sought by the company.
    2. Partnered with the HR manager to source highly skilled recruiters to source and screen candidates.
    3. Created targeted selection tools for use in the interview process so that the company gathered the right information to make good hiring decisions for the new environment.
    4. Developed an on-boarding plan, where the new employees are introduced to the company and their future work in a planned, focused way in order to ensure the most successful transition to their new roles as possible.
  2. To address the under-performing team members:
    1. Partnered with the HR manager and supervisor to identify the areas of low performance by gathering data and feedback.
    2. Created individual development plans to give clear criteria, support and timelines for closing the performance gaps.
    3. Prepared the manager to communicate the new expectations and requirements to the team and then in individual meetings with all team members.
    4. Worked 1:1 with the supervisor to give regular, targeted feedback, and coach employees to obtain best performance possible.
  3. To help the new supervisor obtain the leadership skills for success, we utilize our Leadership Solutions - 4 areas of focus for leadership:
    • Step 1: Clarify Goal & Approach – is the goal for the individual to assess strengths and gaps fully?  Or explore a specific area of need?  What approach would fit this particular situation, especially for new supervisors who will be learning as they go?  Will the individual’s manager receive the written report of the feedback?  Will the manager participate in any of the feedback discussions with GOFORWARD and the new supervisor?  These questions are best handled at the beginning of the assessment & feedback process. GOFORWARD provides 360 surveys, self-assessment tools, interviews, observation – multiple methods of assessing strengths and gaps of an individual or a leadership team. We identified and agreed on the specifics early in the process.
    • Step 2: Conduct Assessments – we used our own assessment instruments (MBTI in this case) and conducted one-on-one interviews to obtain feedback.
    • Step 3: Summarize the Feedback – Verbally and in Writing – GOFORWARD met with the supervisor – one-on-one – to provide highlights of the feedback.  A review meeting with the individual and his/her manager was scheduled also – as agreed in Step 1.   A written report follows.  We provide feedback and recommended next steps – verbally and in writing – to the client.  We believe in a balance of building upon strengths – as well as closing gaps.
    • Step 4: Follow up – We followed up with the new supervisor – and department manager – at 2 months and 6 months following the assessment.

The training and interventions were supported by:

  • 1:1 coaching with the supervisor
  • Follow up with the HR manager

What Our Clients Say

June quickly translated her valuable corporate experience to our non-profit situation. She effectively lead us every step of the way in the development of a Strategic Plan, so that now we have a shared sense of organizational direction. June's broad skill set - ranging from the technical rigor in designing and interpreting a stakeholder survey to the professionalism and compassion she showed in coaching our staff through the resulting organizational change - positions her as a unique consultant for a small, dynamic organization.

-Dan McLellan, Leader, Durham non-profit organization