New Work in a Consultancy Environment
Having a detailed understanding of your clients’ markets and challenges is crucial for delivering productive consultancy services. If we are to guide our clients properly on transformation issues in particular, it is important that we lead by example. That is why we have also engaged closely with New Work as a concept and asked ourselves how we at INVERTO want to work in the future.
The Foundation for New Work
No more stereotypical consultants arriving at the airport every Monday morning, suitcase in hand, off to visit clients. These days, our clients and staff members expect greater flexibility from us as well, so we are increasingly shifting away from in-person client visits. But we are still 100% focused on what they want and need from us; if they experience a business emergency, then we are obviously there at their side, but that is no longer necessary for the majority of everyday project work. And that approach benefits our customers first and foremost – they no longer have to pay travel costs, or organize access passes and project offices, or make sure that someone from the client team is on-site. And, ultimately, it also means that we can really help to reduce CO2 emissions.
The biggest challenge involved in implementing this working model is that it brings the corporate culture alive for every employee. So, the first step needs to be to define what your particular corporate culture stands for. At INVERTO, we worked together to write down our values. The vast majority of them are already embedded in our corporate DNA, so our operations have been aligned with them for many years already, and others are values that we want to increasingly align ourselves with in the future. It is particularly important to us that these values are also reflected in how we work together. We have set these out in our NGWOW (Next Generation Ways of Working) program. The objective of NGWOW is to strengthen open communication, transparency, and a focus on both teams and their individual members. And this is more than just a paper exercise, so we will achieve this by implementing very specific actions and measures.
To ensure that all our colleagues are committed to this transformation, we have also established a PTO (Predictability, Teaming and Open Communication) process. We will be conducting weekly anonymous surveys on employee satisfaction, we will publish the results transparently for all team members to see, and we will use them to guide discussions and then decide together on subsequent actions and measures. It is important that everyone’s voice is heard, from interns right through to managers. A dedicated PTO Coach will act as a neutral yet confidential representative to provide support both to individual employees and the team as a whole. We will facilitate this open and constructive dialog by using methods from our NGWOW program and taking steps including initiating measures to increase psychological safety.
Implementing Specific Actions and Measures
The goal of PTO is to transform how we work within our teams. When a project is launched, the team will take both client requirements and the team’s personal and individual preferences into consideration when deciding whether the focus will be on travel or on working together in one of our INVERTO offices. The result will usually be a hybrid model that combines working together with the client at their site, working as a team in INVERTO offices, and working from home. Our priority is to ensure that the actions and measures benefit every single team member. Everyone should have the opportunity to develop on an individual level, supported by our working from home regulations as well as our flexi-time models and wellbeing provision. And our regular internal events – switching between being held within project teams, at the local office, and even across regions and offices – will obviously remain an essential way of maintaining our corporate spirit and encouraging personal contact. By the way, we’ve replaced winding down in the office with a “beer cooler” and all INVERTO employees have a standing invitation to join us on Friday evenings to see out the week together and have a chance to chat and catch up.
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