Consulting
Be brave.
Be changed.

We help you with the critical conversations needed to explore possibilities, overcome difficulties, and realise opportunities. We work through cycles of inquiry, reflection and action to bring about change. And part of our approach is to build change capability as we go, leaving you better resourced to support your work.

Culture Change

We start with the assumption that organisational cultures represent patterns of relationship that are complex, constantly evolving and often elusive. This is why our approach is focussed on identifying those patterns that are essential to sustainable success, as well as those that you would rather do without.

Rather than imposing a change programme that has to be planned and managed in conventional ways, we prefer the idea of enabling a social movement. Here the aim is to tap into the energy and ownership that is needed for making changes happen that people wish to see.

As part of our approach we help people to become aware of how they interpret situations and how they relate and work with each other - particularly what helps and hinders their effectiveness. Typically, we use creative and engaging methods that hold up a ‘mirror’ to represent the experience of participating in certain contexts. This is often where we find that people notice their own contribution to the very things that frustrate them!

An important part of our support is to help leaders to be more conscious of how their gestures can result in unintended responses and, how they can create the environment where new possibilities are more likely to emerge.



What we do

In our experience, you are more likely to succeed in your aims if you start from (and stay close to) your strategic challenges. These need to be specific, tangible and readily connected to what people do. So, we help you to set clear and meaningful goals that people care about and are committed to, framing the change in ways that make sense to all, whether senior leaders or grass roots employees.



Part of our approach is always to build capability as we go:

Capability Development

Bringing our practice to life - an example



We consulted to an international technology company that needed greater collaboration across brands and regional structures.



Siloed thinking and competitiveness between business lines was hindering innovation and the development of integrated solutions for key clients. A cultural inquiry process helped the senior team to explore the differences between its historical identity and the challenges it faced in the context of changing markets. Our work with them highlighted the need to adapt their operating model and ingrained ways of working with clients. This led to a more deliberate focus on developing a ‘cultural brand’ internally that matched the way the external brand was evolving.

“Over 18 months, we made significant progress in the way we evolved our culture as a primary enabler of an ambitious growth strategy. I really appreciated Metalogue’s capacity to get alongside us and work with our reality rather than follow any pre set template. This helped us to map out the transformation required and what this meant for our roles and ways of working as an executive team.”

Global OD & People Director
Pharmaceutical Sector PLC

 

Strategy Engagement

Too often, strategies developed in the boardroom don’t connect with those outside. The most powerful strategies harness the knowledge, creativity, energy and will of the wider organisation. This is the essence of participatory strategy. But it’s easier said than done.

We think that strategic change is a planned endeavour as well as a creative process of discovery. It requires everyone to think about their assumptions, experimentation, experience and choice. Our approach is to work closely with leadership to design processes that engage people to create strategic change. 

This often means involving some unusual suspects in the strategy process. Quite often we run large group events where the strategy can evolve “live”. These can sometimes be hair-raising (for us and for clients) but always worthwhile.



What we do

We offer a range of support for clients from facilitation of a strategy development session through to large scale strategy engagement processes involving the whole organisation. Whatever the scale, our approaches are always engaging and rigorous.



Part of our approach is always to build capability as we go:

Capability Development

Bringing our practice to life - an example



We worked with a global automotive manufacturer to engage and energize its top 500 leaders around a new and ambitious strategy. Developed as a response to disruption in their marketplace, this strategy demanded collective leadership across its business units and functions.



With key stakeholders we co-created a series of workshops combining personal development and strategy execution. The process enabled leaders to explore and understand how they would need to learn and grow in order to deliver on the strategy.

The workshops engaged functional leadership teams globally over 6 months. During each one, participants had the time to make sense of the strategy. They then formulated plans to mobilise their teams and organisations in line with their strategic goals.

“In a complex changing context Metalogue were able to help us as a group work productively and creatively with our strategic challenges. We were able to align our functional strategy to our overall goals, and develop our capability along the way.”

 

Group Vice President
Global Business and Technical Solutions, Mann+Hummel 

 

Senior Team Effectiveness

Teams who regularly reflect on their aims, purpose and dynamics are more effective.

We have witnessed too many times how the dysfunctions within a senior team impact how they lead their organisation. Despite being highly competent individuals, their team dynamics get in the way of them realising their collective potential.

We develop senior teams and boards by helping them to review how they work together and by providing real time observations and feedback on their behaviour. We also often provide coaching to leaders and their teams by bringing in feedback from stakeholders and psychometric tools.

Our clients tell us that we make a difference by challenging them and enabling them to pause and reflect on how they work together.



What we do

We start from the Outside-In by exploring and evaluating the team’s impact in the organisation and beyond.  We then work from the Inside-Out helping the team to understand its purpose, aims, and dynamics. We do this by:

  • Agreeing the team’s role & vision of success;
  • Clarifying roles, authority and accountabilities within the team;
  • Enabling quality conversations about how they work together and make decisions; and
  • Raising awareness of behaviour & feelings in the ‘here & now’’


Part of our approach is always to build capability as we go:

Capability Development

Bringing our practice to life - an example



We worked with the leadership team for the global operations of a renewable energy business to help them to improve their relationships and decision making. They had been unable to resolve ongoing and long-standing operational issues, and conflicts existed around roles, responsibilities and accountabilities.  



We started by holding reflective conversations with each team member, exploring the challenges the team was unable to resolve in the organisation and each individual’s perception of their role in the team’s dynamics. This informed a 2 day offsite, where we facilitated conversations about their difficulties and their part in them.

To reduce their defensiveness, we encouraged them to notice what was working as well as what was not. This helped them to speak candidly and frankly about their difficulties in listening to and trusting each other, seeing different perspectives, making agreements and keeping commitments. As the sessions progressed, they were more able to see how their dynamics mirrored and maintained the wider cultural dynamics across operations.

“One of our business priorities was to harness and improve the leadership team to drive better performance across the business. For many, this development was a new experience and Metalogue succeeded in creating an approach that challenged those leaders, in an appropriate manner, to learn and behave in new ways. As a result, we are better able to address the changes, challenges and opportunities we face.”

 

Chief Executive
BAM Construct UK Ltd

 

Organisation Design

All too often, organisation redesign seems to be about moving boxes and people around on hierarchical organisation charts. However, our recent research suggests that this is not always as objective as it seems and decisions are often taken for personal reasons.

Power and politics are often at play at senior levels. Our skill is in managing a structured process that acknowledges interests and motives but encourages senior teams to design their organisation to best deliver on strategy. We help clients work out how to integrate strategic choice, organisation form, key roles, operating units and support roles with their internal cultures while acknowledging all structures have trade-offs and risks.

Our approach is systemic and systematic, but avoids over focus on structure. It involves:

  • Identifying the critical choices and trade-offs.
  • Assessing the current model against design principles and tests.
  • Developing and evaluating design choices.
  • Developing transition plans for moving to a new design.


What we do

We know that each organisation design context is different; different support will be required at different stages. We help you make robust decisions which address difficult trade-offs, and help you through the transition. Our design can cover some or all of the following:



Part of our approach is always to build capability as we go:

Capability Development

Bringing our practice to life - an example



We enabled a global electrical and electronics engineering company to change how it organised. The business had grown through acquisitions which had over time created a highly complex structure. This duplicated critical resource and created operational risk.



The first phase of the work engaged the CEO and a team of key stakeholders in a series of offsites to review the existing design and develop options for the future corporate structure. This facilitated a clear view and decision about which activities were held at Group, Divisional and Business level.

This initial phase of work helped the senior leadership team to further clarify their strategy, to strengthen their relationships and to agree responsibilities across the organisation. To develop ownership for the proposed design, the leadership explored their proposals with the top 50 managers at a global conference.

In the second phase, we helped each division to develop their operating units in line with the new model. We worked with design teams to develop and evaluate options that were consistent with the principles of the new design.

“The organisation design work with Metalogue is a critical element of our strategic transformation. They are a pleasure to work with: credible with senior leaders in the business and the right balance of challenging and supportive.”

 

CEO
Ultra Electronics

 

Development

We partner with and develop leaders and practitioners in Organisation Design, Development, Strategy and Change.

We draw on the latest thinking in organisation design, organisation development and the wider social sciences. We bring this together with our own research, and our long experience of working in and consulting to organisations.

We work with experienced leaders and professionals who want to integrate theory into their practice and to develop more strategic skills.

Development is based on peer learning principles. We design workshops that tackle participants’ own live organisational issues, helping them find creative and practical ways to make a difference and to develop themselves in the process.

Our feedback shows that participants typically acquire:

  • Increased personal awareness, improving the quality of their relationships and the effectiveness of their interventions.
  • An explicit and practical theory of organisations, strategy and change, broadening their repertoire of interventions.
  • The ability to take an inquiring stance, as an essential skill for change leaders, managers, facilitators or consultants.


In a typical two day programme we cover the fundamental frameworks, skills and techniques of internal consulting and advising. Our approach is to work with real challenges and live issues that participants are currently facing in their roles. At its heart the aim is to help participants to influence and change their organisation.

Who is this for?

This programme is aimed at those working in internal consulting and advisory roles, such as OD professionals, HR business partners, and other change agents. The programme is intended to develop:

• An understanding of core consulting frameworks and the consulting cycle

• An awareness of approaches to influencing change

• A familiarity with alternative approaches to intervening in organisational systems

• Confidence in dealing with difficult dynamics

 

Illustrative programme shown opposite.

Day 1
  • What do we mean by business partnering and internal consulting?
  • Different consulting roles - expert, pair of hands and collaborative roles
  • Introduction to the consulting cycle
  • The process of contracting
  • Peer transformation clinic, Inquiry, discovery and sensemaking

Day 2
  • Influencing and advisory skills
  • Designing interventions
  • Understanding and dealing with resistance
  • Reflections on what you have learnt about consulting
  • Application of Learning

Want to find out more
Get in touch

This two day customised development programme is for organisations that are about to re-organise or want to improve their existing design. The programme helps managers to undertake the re-design process in a structured and thoughtful manner by identifying the strategic imperatives and critical design principles, evaluating their existing design, creating new design options and making reasoned choices. Throughout the programme challenges and dilemmas in transitioning to a new design are identified and explored.

Who is this for?

This programme is designed for managers, HR practitioners and internal consultants who have responsibility for leading or facilitating the design of an organisation or a part of one. The programme is intended to develop:

  • Greater understanding of organisation design approaches and the link back to strategy
  • Confidence and competence in using the key tools and methodologies in organisation design, with other colleagues in a way that is both credible and consistent
  • Ability to transfer the learning back to the respective workplaces

 

Illustrative programme shown opposite.

Day 1
  • First steps into organization design (Star Model & Operating Model)
  • The Language of Roles
  • Simple structures
  • Evaluating structures: Design Principles
  • Evaluating structures: 9 Tests of Design & Fit (Campbell & Goold)

Day 2
  • Application clinic/ routes into the work
  • Hybrid Structures
  • Decision making to test the structure
  • The organisation design process & research findings (Hardman & Mookherjee research)
  • Review & Action Planning

Want to find out more
Get in touch

The focus of this programme is on leading organisational transformations, and is based upon our research into what works in practice. Key inputs include strategy, organisation design, culture change and leading transformation teams. The workshop is designed to help participants to apply their learning to current change and transformation initiatives.

Who is this for?

This programme is aimed at senior transformation leaders and experienced OD professionals who are looking to develop their skills and impact beyond the purely technical. The programme is intended to develop:

  • Understanding of how to support change in complex systems
  • An awareness of common challenges and pitfalls in transformation work
  • Knowledge of alternative approaches and techniques for engaging people in change
  • A learning community in which participants can support each other throughout their transformation work

 

 

Illustrative programme shown opposite.

Day 1
  • Identifying and understanding the drivers of transformation
  • The nature of disruption and disrupting
  • Framing transformations – creating coherent purpose and narrative
  • Peer transformation clinic

Day 2
  • Psychological and social dynamics of transformation
  • The leadership of transformation
  • Influencing with and without authority
  • Creating transformative spaces – approaches and techniques
  • Community support planning

Want to find out more
Get in touch

This engaging and rigorous two-day strategy development workshop involves a journey through selected approaches and frameworks in order to build a robust strategy for the organisation. The frameworks are introduced and then applied to the organisation in a flow which leads to a well-grounded strategy. This participative approach to developing supports longer term understanding, engagement and capability development.

Who is this for?

This workshop is designed for leaders responsible for developing strategy as well as those leading teams within a strategic organisational context. The workshop is intended to help you create your organisation strategy and while doing so to develop:

  • Understanding of different theoretical perspectives on strategy, and what they mean in practice
  • A shared understanding of strategy frameworks to interpret the market context, and an ability to apply them through application on your own organisation
  • Confidence to understand and make choices and trade-offs when developing your strategy, together with others who have a stake in the outcome and the approach
  • Engagement from across the organisation to support implementation of the strategy

 

Illustrative strategy workshop design shown opposite.

Day 1
  • Introductions and reason for new strategy, and a re-statement of organizational purpose and “givens”
  • Sharing and making sense of inquiry findings
  • What are we learning from implementing previous strategy intentions (Whirlygig tool)
  • Agreeing attractiveness criteria for selecting future geographies, segments and customers
  • Input on changes in the market (from an internal specialist using latest data)
  • Brainstorming and grouping external factors, making sense of opportunities and threats and generating initial strategic options (PESTEL framework)
  • Assessing segment profitability outlook and generating options (5 Forces tool)
  • Reviewing geography, segment and customer size and growth data
  • Assessing geographies, segments and customers against agreed attractiveness criteria

Day 2
  • Understand the Key Success Factors (KSFs) for chosen geographies, segments and customers (KSF or Value Curve tool)
  • Assess organizational performance against KSFs
  • Choose geographies, segments and customers based on an assessment of attractiveness vs strength (Directional Policy Matrix tool)
  • Select 6 strategic options to proceed with (Impact vs Do-ability tool)
  • Creating plans for each strategic options and review in plenary to consider connections, dependencies, implications as well as who else to engage on each option
  • Making group sense of the challenge of implementation and checking for commitment and roles (using Social Presencing Theatre)
  • Agreeing an organizational engagement approach
  • Agreeing priorities and next steps

Want to find out more
Get in touch

Internal Consulting & Partnering Skills

In a typical two day programme we cover the fundamental frameworks, skills and techniques of internal consulting and advising. Our approach is to work with real challenges and live issues that participants are currently facing in their roles. At its heart the aim is to help participants to influence and change their organisation.





Part of our approach is always to build capability as we go:

Capability Development





Organisation Design

This two day customised development programme is for organisations that are about to re-organise or want to improve their existing design. The programme helps managers to undertake the re-design process in a structured and thoughtful manner by identifying the strategic imperatives and critical design principles, evaluating their existing design, creating new design options and making reasoned choices. Throughout the programme challenges and dilemmas in transitioning to a new design are identified and explored.





Part of our approach is always to build capability as we go:

Capability Development





Leading Transformational Change

The focus of this programme is on leading organisational transformations, and is based upon our research into what works in practice. Key inputs include strategy, organisation design, culture change and leading transformation teams. The workshop is designed to help participants to apply their learning to current change and transformation initiatives.





Part of our approach is always to build capability as we go:

Capability Development





Participative Strategy Development

This engaging and rigorous two-day strategy development workshop involves a journey through selected approaches and frameworks in order to build a robust strategy for the organisation. The frameworks are introduced and then applied to the organisation in a flow which leads to a well-grounded strategy. This participative approach to developing supports longer term understanding, engagement and capability development.





Part of our approach is always to build capability as we go:

Capability Development