With an approach that has delivered demonstrable business benefits in terms of increased profitability together with employee morale and empowerment, 2inspire can turn your business around and show you that there are no limits to what can be achieved.
I'm Shaun Harratt, I'm Managing Director of the Harratts Group, we're based in Wakefield, we've got 11 car dealerships across Yorkshire from Leeds down to Sheffield and Pontefract to Huddersfield.
We met up about 2½ years ago and had lunch and he said to me "You need to change your attitude", I was talking about some issues I had at work and it was everybody else's fault, and I thought – maybe I do. So I went on the 2inspire Leadership Course about 18 months ago and it's had quite an impact on my personal and business life. The difference in myself is that I was blaming other people, the environment, I was blaming everything but myself, saying it's their fault, it's their fault, it's the manufacturer's fault, it's the governments fault, it's the economy's fault well I can't change all those things all I can do is change what I do and how I interact with my own people within my business and that's all I did, I changed how I interacted with them and that built them up and then I invested in them with training which made them grow as people and they invested in their own people and it's created a great positive impact on the business.
I've been involved with Rob pretty much all of the 18 months in one form or another which has been good from a personal point of view because Rob's a great mentor and he's always challenging you to raise your own bar, so it's been good from that point of view as well.
I think we can all have a better attitude in certain parts of our life, we may feel we're good at some things, some people are really good at work but they might neglect their family, some people might spend a lot of time with their family but might be neglecting work. What it does is gives you an awareness of how you see yourself relative to how other people see you and then it provides some sort of improvement areas and they're not necessarily weaknesses they're just things you can do better. Then it gives you some confidence to actually get out of your comfort zone and it gives you some momentum because once you start doing good things and you get good feedback you want to do more good things and get more good feedback and it builds into a positive spiral. So I would say to anybody that we can all improve.
I'm David Ross, I'm the Managing Director of a company called Keycare, we provide a specialist product for people who lose their keys or have them stolen.
I actually came across Rob about 8 or 9 years ago, I'd been in the job as Managing Director of Keycare for about 12 months at that point in time, I'd moved from a large corporate organisation into Keycare which is a much smaller family owned concern and frankly I just wasn't equipped for the unique challenges of the job. I thought I was but in actual fact I was struggling.
I was introduced to Rob by a mutual business contact who suggested I speak to him maybe undertake some of his leadership material. I did that and it completely revolutionised my thinking on what a good leader should be, helped me deal with the challenges I had; communication, leadership, responsibility and from there I've had a relationship with him that I've tried to extrapolate into the business on an ongoing basis.
So when he formed 2inspire I was more than happy to retake his Leadership Programme, I needed a refresher, I became involved in helping him deliver some of the programmes and just last year we undertook a full in-house programme for everybody in our business that Rob designed and delivered as well.
They help you to become aware of the bad habits that you've fallen into, which in positions of leadership you don't always have people around you that are prepared to tell you that, sometimes it does need an external body, like 2inspire, to do that for you, to tell you some of the home truths that maybe perhaps people in your business are a little bit reluctant to do.
In terms of the Inspirational Leadership Programme personally I felt the benefits from the 1st session, I do know, having seen other people it takes a little bit longer maybe for the penny to drop, maybe sessions 2,3 or 4. I don't know of anybody that has been through the whole programme and failed to get something from it. So from that point of view I think the results are tangible and they happen relatively quickly over that 6 session period.
The real challenge though is when people go through the programme is to continue it beyond that point and I've got to give credit to Rob and his team, they're always on hand to act as mentors, as friends, as the voice of your conscience if you like, they're very proactive at keeping in touch with you, they're always available, but it's down to the individual to make sure that what they've learned lives on into their day-to-day lives whether that's their personal life, business life or both.
My name is Lindsay Sessions, I work for Moore's Furniture Group based at Thorpe Arch in Wetherby and I'm the HR Director.
I started at the company in July and one of the reasons I joined Moore's was that they wanted to embark on a cultural shift in the business, for me that's all about the Leadership within a business, how you lead is how you deliver your business.
They'd already planned for 2inspire to take the Senior Management Team through the Leadership Programme. I wanted to make sure that I was comfortable so we met in August, had a chat, and I was delighted to find that we'd picked somebody that I could really work with, who was going to help me, with my goal of moving the business forward through the people – how we work and how we lead our people.
So we embarked upon the programme in September with the Senior Management Team. We did 2 programmes over a 5 week period and the results of that were just remarkable! Almost straight away people engaged around the programme and started to be different, started to behave differently, started to work together better, started to understand themselves better and their own impact.
By the time we came to the end of both programmes, the Board of Directors, who hadn't decided to go through the programme, met with Rob and we decided we'd go through our own programme which we started in October and completed in December. It was quite interesting, we did it second, the Senior Management Team had started to behave differently and we were behind! So the Board actually followed everybody else.
The result of that has been incredible, in terms of how people work together, how they work more collaboratively, how they behave, how they lead their people, how people feel about each other, the fact that people can actually express their feelings and can talk and give each other feedback which they just didn't do before. The business didn't have a culture of even giving each other feedback.
What we're doing now is going to take the rest of the Management Team the final Leadership Programme with 2inspire. We'll be doing that with 25 people and taking 5 internal facilitators, myself included and another Director, to take these 25 people through and work with Rob to take all those people through the programme together so I'm really excited about that, it's going to be fantastic.
The changes I've seen in our particular company is that what was a fairly hierarchical way of working, the barriers have come down, people have stopped viewing others in the organisation as people in certain positions and have started to work together better.
When I joined the business, and before the programme, people, in some cases, were worried about having conversations or dealing with Members of the Board and all those barriers really have come down now. So that enables me to support my vision of having a flatter structure in the organisation. You don't have to have Directors and Senior Managers and Managers and Team Leaders and Supervisors in a big pyramid. Actually we can flatten the structure and having the Leadership Skills we can begin breaking down those barriers and this enables the culture to work much better.
For me the work we've been doing with 2inspire has really been a catalyst, for the work I wanted to do when I joined the business, for me being able to fulfil the reason and the things I was brought in to do.
My name's Matt Eldon I'm the HR Manager at Moores Furniture Group at Wetherby. We heard about the programmes through one of our managers who went to a conference with Rob at Harrogate and he came back very excited about what he could offer.
We've certainly seen an impact at the Senior Management and Management level, the next stage is to keep cascading the programme through the rest of the organisation, hopefully we'll have all the Team Leaders trained throughout the business by the end of this year and that will have a big impact on the rest of the workforce.
We've seen a massive change in morale, we've seen a big change in the style of our leadership, we're a lot more engaging, we involve people more, we enthuse people by being positive rather than just focussing on the negative points, we praise and recognise people which empowers people makes them feel more positive and they contribute more and it's just lifted the atmosphere in the organisation which has been quite difficult seeing as the recession has had such an impact we've managed to make an improvement in terms of our morale and motivation.
The big difference in this programme to many other leadership programmes we've experienced is that it breaks it down into simple steps, it sounds like common sense, which isn't always that common. It also gets people to apply what they learn between the sessions so it makes you try it, experience it and realise the benefit from it rather than just practise it in a classroom environment, you have to apply what you're learning between each session.
My name's Andrew Stokes, I'm the Managing Director of SS Systems a Fire and Security company based in Rotherham, South Yorkshire.
It was highly recommended so I didn't really need any introduction, the Leadership Course was given to me, because I'm the Director and I needed to inspire myself and my colleagues, and I've been very impressed.
The course literature is developed on a personal basis as you go through the course, which is something you keep and refer to when the course is finished.
Basically they just highlight the obvious, it sounds such a silly thing to say but a lot of the stuff they show you is what you already know but highlighted in a way where it makes you realise you've got to implement those on a daily basis and get into a habit of doing that.
They've introduced The Leadership Club recently, which I've signed myself up for and I'm aware there's quite a few others as well. The intention is that we keep on testing ourselves and allowing ourselves to be looked at by the 2inspire team to keep pointing us in the right direction.