The strength of an organisation is often measured by its willingness to change and to constantly anticipate and prepare itself for the challenges and the opportunities of the future.
At Anglian Water we try to think ahead and aim to ensure all those who work with us are building their skills and talents and thus setting themselves up well for what is an ever changing future.
One example is our recent Transforming Our Leadership Programme. The aim of this Programme, which to date has involved our directors, senior and first line managers, has been to challenge existing thinking, bring fresh perspectives from outside our organisation and to build the skills of our leaders in a range of key areas we feel will be important for the future.
The enthusiasm for the programme, whether from new graduates or long standing water industry professionals, has been really rewarding. Everyone has been open to trying new things and rethinking old practices.
One area we have concentrated on is Personal Resilience. The world of work can create all sorts of pressure but it is how we prepare for and respond to those pressures is the telling thing. This emphasis supports the Anglian Water agenda on Employee Wellbeing and in particular encouraging good mental health. For some time now we have worked with Business In The Community (BITC) and other leading organisations to create more parity of understanding and approach to mental health as well as physical health. This programme has given managers more confidence to support themselves and their teams in this area of growing significance.
Our delivery partners for the programme could not be better placed to help us with this agenda. They are Lane 4 Management Consulting (lead by Adrian Moorhouse the Olympic swimmer) and Loughborough University Business School. The combination of elite sports development, business knowledge and academic rigor brought by these organisations has meant all the interventions have been of a quality but also a practical nature meaning our leaders can apply them straight away.
Attendance on the programme is just the beginning and we are embedding new activities all the time. The most rewarding thing is that our leaders are doing much of that embedding themselves, without the need for additional help. Using the insights with their teams and helping them to be more high performing and resilient.
The programme won our internal Chief Executive’s Award last year and we are currently finalists for both the Personnel Today Excellence in Leadership Development Award and the Staff Development Award from Utility Week. External recognition of the programme will be icing on the cake for something participants already really value.