Adaptive Organisation: The Future Looks Bright at Gallagher
Gallagher, a leading global Security and Animal Management Solutions organisation, has plans to triple in size over the next five to seven years. However, their structure and ways of working could not support this level of growth. The Gallagher team felt they were losing their entrepreneurial spirit, and that it was becoming increasingly slow and difficult to deliver to customers. There was a gap between the people making decisions on a day-to-day basis and the needs of the end users.
How might a rapidly growing organisation communicate better at a strategic level, then empower teams to improve delivery practices and provide increased value to customers?
- New ways of working that enable a more responsive and scalable organisation
- Increased ownership - business owners have been able to share the outcomes they seek and leave the teams to determine how to achieve this
- Customer centricity - moving decision-making closer to the work, allowing Gallagher to be more in touch and responsive to customer needs
- Cross-functional collaboration - teams now have most of the skills to deliver end-to-end value to customers
- Clear direction & focus - techniques like Big Room Planning and workflow management have helped prioritise a large volume of work and provide a sharp focus on what is important
Gallagher Group is one of New Zealand’s most innovative private organisations, leading global markets in Security and Animal Management Solutions. Gallagher Security operates at the highest international levels of security, protecting the world’s most critical assets in over 160 countries around the world.
Gallagher engaged Radically and together they customised a transformational journey called “BWoW” (Better Ways of Working). The focus was on creating better ways of working and developing end-to-end customer value streams.
To ensure the transformation has the right level of visibility, sponsorship and support, Radically ran a series of workshops for the executive leadership team. This established a clear set of principles for the work and aligned the executives on how they could best support it. Together, they co-created a transition plan for the BWoW journey.
- Helping the Chief Product Officer to design and set up value streams, also known as Gallagher's "Tribes"
- Establishing the implementation teams, which included senior leaders who role-modelled adaptive leadership and practices
- Designing and implementing new ways of working for all product teams
- Upskilling all teams on the new ways of working
- Providing hands-on delivery coaching to embed the new approach and build internal capability
One of the first challenges was the sheer volume of work in progress. People were working hard but spread across too many things to be truly effective. Radically helped Gallagher learn and apply portfolio prioritisation techniques, resulting in a sharp focus on value. Teams now have a clear mandate to only work on what truly matters.
The cultural change Gallagher went through was profound. As in any change, people needed to understand “the why” in order to support “the how”. There were a number of things we implemented to achieve this, some of which were:
- Establish a clear North Star
- Ensure leaders were highly visible and accessible during the change
- Maintain clear, frequent communication throughout
- Provide targeted support, training and coaching for the ELT
- Develop frequent sync sessions between squads to share lessons and support one another
- Support Gallagher to hire internal Delivery Coaches for Radically to hand over to.
- Assist staff with role transitions, helping them understand what good looks like and how they progress.
- Bespoke training, coaching and mentoring.
Gallagher has made huge leaps forward and has created real momentum right across the business. Senior leaders have learned new techniques that will help them continue the journey. Delivery teams have undergone significant professional and personal development, building powerful new skills for a better future. Gallagher has ambitious growth plans, and thanks to their partnership with Radically, they are now in a prime position to achieve that.
On working with Radically
It was clear from the very outset that the values of both companies matched. Both are strongly committed to a better tomorrow and have a passion for always learning. They also believe in treating others with integrity and take deep pride in developing deep, long-term relationships.
Benefits of Adaptive Ways of Working
When reflecting on the change, Gallagher can see the following benefits:
A more responsive and scalable organisation– the new ways of working have been designed and customised to help Gallagher be more responsive in a rapidly changing world and increasing its ability to scale & achieve its purpose.
Increased ownership – with increased direction and focus, business owners have been able to share the outcomes they seek and leave the teams to determine how to achieve this. By collaborating on outcomes and involving the teams in planning, engagement and accountability have increased. The teams know what they are accountable for and who needs to do what.
Customer centricity – moving decision-making closer to the work has allowed Gallagher to be more in touch with and responsive to customer needs.
Cross-functional collaboration – with more traditional ways of working, individuals tended to focus on doing their bit and worked tended to progress in a sequential manner. With the new ways of working, cross-functional teams now have most of the skills to deliver end-to-end value to customers. The result is better quality solutions and better business outcomes – and a more engaged team.
Clearer direction & focus – Teams using adaptive ways of working have increased focus and clarity on the key priorities and what is required to achieve these. Techniques like Big Room Planning and workflow management have helped prioritize a large volume of work and provide a sharp focus on what is important, why it is important, and what work each team need to achieve to be successful.
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