Case Study – Hanson
High Performance and Productivity for Leaders
Hanson is a concrete company, based in Australia and owned by Heidelberg Cement. They are involved in all aspects of their supply chain: from sales, to raw materials and production, to research and development and logistics.
Hanson faced a similar problem to many companies around the globe post-GFC. They had become a leaner organisation, but their leaders and managers became challenged by operating with less human resources. As a result, leaders were getting bogged down in the day-to-day work and left relatively little time to focus on the things that made them valuable, namely strategic projects, managing their people and focussing on the bigger picture. With operations Australia-wide, and often in remote areas, they needed a solution that worked for them logistically – without the need to constantly bring people in from the regions.
Hanson engaged Performance Lab and Tony Wilson to deliver the High Performance and Productivity Program. Although this is often a program aimed at staff rather than leaders, Hanson folded this into their leadership development suite and re-badged the program ‘Planning and Productivity.’
The program is aimed at giving people the skills to manage themselves for high performance in the 21st Century. With so much to do in today’s workplace and such a proliferation of information, this program helps people manage themselves and their days so that they can perform at their best day after day without burning out. It is developed with strict adherence to the Science of High Performance, and bridges the gap between what science tells us is most effective and what we are doing on a daily basis.
The basis of the program is to help people stop ‘spinning their wheels’ and start focussing on the things that really make a difference.
In conjunction with Hanson, Performance Lab adjusted to program to directly suit the needs of their leaders. The program taught leaders the skills to get out of the day-to-day rabble and start focussing on executing the behaviours that make them most valuable to the company. As well as this, the participants gained valuable high performance skills that would help them outside of work and push them to better work-life-balance.
Format and Delivery
The program’s format was a drawcard for Hanson. With online delivery of seven of the ten modules available in the program, they could save money on travel expenses and they were also able to save time by having their leaders consume small, 15 minute bites of learning that they could fit into their day, every couple of weeks. Tony Wilson provided online coaching to make sure the leaders were engaging with the online portion of the course.
The course was also supplemented with face-to-face workshops. There were three full day workshops in total, and these allowed the participants to reinforce their learning and ensured they could apply their new skills in the workplace.
The program has changed the way that the Hanson leaders work on a daily basis. They are more focussed on the things that make them most valuable, they put more time and effort into the big impact projects, and they have more time to devote to managing their people and building their teams.
The program helped the leaders define what’s most important, and helped make them aware of where their time is being consumed by things that don’t add value. Armed with this knowledge, they have built strategies and habits that allow them to get their high value work done, while still leaving time for putting out fires. In some cases, they have also started to delegate more effectively and eradicate some things that weren’t adding value at all.
As a a bonus, they also now manage their work-life balance a lot more effectively. To quote one participant: “I can’t believe I am getting more done every day – and also leaving work earlier!”
A big part of this is that they have learnt to manage the distractions of the 21st Century extremely well. Things like email, general distractions, procrastination and the paradox of choice.
This program has become extremely popular at Hanson and is regularly oversubscribed as the value of the program has been realised across business units all over Australia.
Here are some of the things that participants are saying:
"I'm no longer a slave to email. I've got more control of my time and attention"
"I'm so much more aware of my behaviours and when I'm getting caught doing 'busy work' instead of the things that really make a difference"
"I'm actually leaving the office earlier, having achieved far more in my day than I used to. I'm more productive and my work life balance is better as a result”
“It feels good to leave work everyday with a sense of accomplishment”
“I’m really understanding my behaviours better and using that knowledge to focus on the most important things. But it’s also made me a lot more understanding of other people’s behaviours as well”
“We go to a lot of training, but this is the first program that I’ve looked forward to every month because it makes a real difference to the way you work”
“The online modules were really fun and interesting to watch. I’ll actually miss seeing them when the program’s finished”