Morale Concerns - Improve Working Culture

Improving Workplace Culture

Case Studies

The Client:

The partner of an accounting firm seeking assistance to improve the way the Audit Group was operating at team level in the context of a growth strategy for the Group.

The Brief:

To work with the partner, managers and team members to improve team morale and performance.

The partner held growing concerns about team relationships impacting the morale and performance of the workplace and had concerns about quality, levels of client communication and client service. The Partner had also received some negative staff feedback about management of the team.

Within the past 12 months the team had undergone growth in roles and workload and there had been some key staff changes and some changes in roles and responsibilities in the team which were not yet bedded down.

Our Response:

Our consultants interviewed the partner and managers, and then conducted staff focus groups on an in confidence basis to get feedback from different perspectives about the team's operations, strengths and weaknesses. We also conducted exit interviews with some staff who had recently left the team. We analysed the input and debriefed the partner providing specific de-identified feedback to protect individual confidentiality.

We agreed a way forward with the partner which involved, held over a short period of time – an individual debriefing of another senior manager; followed by a management team workshop with supervisors; followed by an all staff and managers combined workshop.

During these discussions and workshops issues were addressed covering: role clarity; reporting arrangements/chain of command; performance expectations of staff at different levels; values and professional conduct; communication processes; staff development; team groundrules and meeting protocols.

The Results:

A substantial amount of uncertainty had developed within the team before this intervention as a result of growth and changes in key roles and responsibilities within the team. The changes had led to some blurring of understanding around appropriate team conduct, expectations, roles and responsibilities, communication, development and supervisory processes and practices.

This intervention enabled these issues to be objectively identified, and enabled managers and team members to focus on key actions that would address the concerns.

The partner reported that almost immediately after this intervention workplace morale and the feel of the team had markedly improved. This was leading to greater confidence regarding quality and improved client service

Business Performance Through People

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