‘Everyone thinks of me as Dad, and we are one happy family’ said the long term CEO when we first met. 15 years earlier he had come to the MENA region to establish a MNC entity in an underserved market. Hiring a team of 6 he built the subsidiary to be one of the biggest revenue earners for the parent company.
Identified issues & symptoms
- Declining Revenues, and losing market share
- Customer retention fading – looking for other options
- CEO preferred leadership style was patriarchal and autocratic
- Suggestions, ideas, new technology and concepts were dismissed
- Compliance breaches were not pursued leading to mismanagement of resources
- Open favoritism with an “in group” allowed to bypass line managers
- No delegation of authority – Managers were severely restrained in decision making
- Many staff felt frustrated with the lack of leadership leading to complacency
- Large number of employees felt overlooked, under-appreciated and only contributed the minimum required to get through the day
- Lack of organizational people infrastructure (functional HR) for employees to work effectively.
What we did
- Organizational assessment including an OVS employee engagement assessment
- Transparently flagged issues, unambiguously stated necessary steps to rectify the situation (describing cause and effect).
- Formed and established a leadership team with an agreed charter and levels of delegated authority
- Took the leadership team through a process to build trust allowing for conducive actions
- Coached both the leadership team and selected employees to support and drive the committed change
- Prepared the CEO for exit
- The CEO realized and understood that what once worked was not valid any longer. Recognition that he no longer had the desire or energy to transform the organization, allowed him to make the decision to step aside.
- The required organizational structure and discipline needed to transform was initiated
- Employee engagement numbers improved
- Profit margin increased with a leaner, more efficient organization
- Business Growth is a holistic undertaking.
- Revenue targets and retaining market share need an empowered workforce to be sustainable
- Levels of delegation within the organization must be openly established and the delegated authority must be honored across all levels in hierarchy