This is about a company in the construction industry that has grown, and as a consequence of this their need for communication and structure has changed.
Initially, the assignment was to work with the company’s leadership at both individual and group level but, as a natural progression, this increased their understanding of the need to work with the company’s inner life. This meant that we expanded the assignment to include working with the company’s business development. As I had come into contact with Columbi at this time, I understood how an assessment of this kind could help the company on several levels. Of course, it was about gaining an understanding of what the co-workers regarded as being their challenges and what they felt worked well. But I also saw the opportunity to get the co-workers involved in the company’s development.
In the autumn of 2019, the company carried out its first Columbi Work assessment combined with the subsequent workshop. This was also my first Columbi and I can say that in term of goals set that it exceeded both my and the company’s expectations.
The management gained a clear picture of what worked and what could be better, but on top of that, it created commitment far beyond what I’d witnessed previously when working as a manager with traditional co-worker surveys. The proposals that emerged spanned questions around structure and communication as well as how to collaborate within the group. For example, one issue that arose was that they wanted to get out onto the construction sites before the work began so that they could form an opinion about the job in hand. This was so that they could do the job as well and efficiently as possible once they started. The view was that the set-up time was often unnecessarily long due to a lack of materials or that there were outstanding questions that needed to be addressed. From seeing this as a problem for the foreman to deal with, the co-workers realised that they could raise these issues if or when the foreman had failed to address them. The insight into what constitutes one’s own responsibility as a co-worker became clear, as did the insight that one can exert a great deal of influence if one starts to communicate more.
A year later the company carried out a follow-up Columbi. This provided the management with clear confirmation that the measures they had taken had produced the required results, at the same time as they received good input with respect to what they should work with going forward. What they had actually done since the previous survey also became clear to the co-workers. The results clearly showed that they had worked successfully with the issues that had been raised the year before and that everyone in the company understood their role and responsibility in the success.
Trade union representatives have also been very positive about working with Columbi having seen how everyone has the opportunity to make their voice heard and thus creating possibilities for co-workers to influence what the management team works with. This has also strengthened co-workers understanding of the company’s challenges through improved and clearer communication within the company.
Narrated by Johanna Lindquist