HOW COULD WE HELP OUR MANAGERS BE MORE SELF-DRIVEN AND TAKE MORE INITIATIVE?
Successful organisations are the ones who have realised, that a larger capacity for learning is needed at work. Good learning skills allow individuals to quickly adopt new tools and to use their experience and insights to develop and refine work processes. Work is complex and we need strong cooperation skills and good networks to be able to solve problems that arise.
Metso is a global, Finnish company that supplies machinery and services to mining, aggregates and other process industries. When they first approached us, they wanted to find new ways to support their managers in this complex learning environment. Metso understood that in order to succeed, they needed to make sure their managers and leaders were at the top of the learning game.
Action + reflection = learning
What Metso was looking for, was a solution that would introduce hands-on learning experiences into everyday life of the the middle management. They wanted something that would leave a positive and concrete impact on the way Metso leaders work every day, helping them adopt more agile and self-driven ways of working.
The only way to create any kind of change in an organisation is to start doing things differently. Instead of wasting time planning the new, or speculating, or attending trainings, just take action. This is also what we did at Metso. We introduced the Leadership Quest, a question-driven and action-oriented concept that pushed participants to take action and then apply reflection to the outcomes. Action followed by reflection results in new insights and learning. When this is built into everyday work in a smart way, it starts becoming a habit and results in a new, stronger learning culture in the whole organisation.
From the very first programme, Metso leaders from across the globe participated in a Quest that created ripple effects across the whole organisation. One thing about action is that you can’t really do it alone, at least not in a work setting. Action requires you to interact with others and so the effects of doing, trying and discussing results start to spread. Not only where the managers learning to learn, they were also leading and pushing the rest of their team to learn with them.
Tools to support learning
What made the Leadership Quest possible on a global scale was the TalentMiles App. The app brought managers from six different continents together, without having to travel excessively. While this approach saved a lot of time and money for both Metso and the Quest participants, it also proved how effective a digital coaching tool can be. The TalentMiles App makes learning visible and measurable and keeps it at the forefront by reminding participants of tasks at hand.
To further support and challenge participants, the Leadership Quest includes a Learning Coach, who tracks, helps and provides feedback along the way. The Learning Coach is like that pesky best friend who tells you how it is, even when the truth might sting a little. We all need one of those, right?
The Leadership Quest proved to be a hit and created visible results for both Metso and the managers participating.