Leading with Global Impact

How do you design a global leadership academy that combines Scandinavian insights into learning and leadership with the best of analog and digital learning technologies?

In 2017 and 2018, Workz had the pleasure of assisting the industry leading global facility service company ISS with the design of their international global leadership programme Leading the ISS Way. The ambitions were high and the scope global – by the end of 2019, more than 1,500 leaders from 35 countries will have been trained in Leading the ISS Way and over time, the programme will be rolled out to 20,000 leaders.

The programme was developed to support the ISS WAY strategy which aims to accelerate customer centricity and transform the company into a highly integrated, global service provider that delivers advanced services to strategic customers worldwide.

The global Leading the ISS Way training programme is inspired by 3 key insights:

  • Quality of leadership is key to retention and growth
    The quality of leadership that people receive from their direct manager is the most important factor regarding job satisfaction, engagement, retention and productivity. Bad leaders are the main reason why people leave their jobs, and great leaders are a key contributor to motivation and personal development. 

  • Involvement is key to change
    There are significant cultural differences across the world, but everybody appreciates being involved, trusted and to play. A truly global leadership academy needs to be designed from trust with the participants being active contributors instead of passive learners. In Leading the ISS Way, training is playful, engaging but also challenging. Board game based simulations are used throughout the three modules of the academy in combination with a strong digital platform. 
  • Real change happens in practice
    It’s easy to agree to new policies, practices and values at an off-site but it’s much harder to live them in every day practice. Especially in a ever-changing, client-needs driven service industry. Participants engage deeply in each others’ development as leaders during the programmes' modules but more importantly in between the modules. A strong digital platform keeps participants focused and offers more opportunities to learn, grow and be inspired.

The programme is currently being rolled-out by more than 40 trainers. It is still too early to make any conclusions regarding final business impact and results, but the feedback from the global organisation has been exceptionally positive - from participants, as well as managers, at all levels.

“This programme not only helps you to be a better leader, but also a better person...”
Paul Archer – Chief Operating Officer, ISS New Zealand

“The most remarkable, in addition to the contents of the programme, is the opportunity to pause, from the daily operation that requires a lot of time, to come together to reflect on more strategic issues, which are relevant for the business and the conduct of our people.”
Horacio Miñano, People & Culture Director, ISS Chile