Making Big Change Happen • Case Studies
Nicola Peachey – Director of HR & Organisational Development, Arthritis Research UK
So Nicola, how would describe the work we’re doing together, the big change here?
It’s about enabling us as the leadership team. We have an amazing shared vision of what we can achieve and the changes that we need to make. But we needed to be confident that we were the people that could drive and deliver that change. It’s been about equipping us with the confidence, the skills, and testing our approach, to enable us to bring our people with us.
What makes this so important?
Arthritis and conditions affecting the joints bones and muscles impact at least 10 million people across the UK. Many of those people are living in chronic daily pain, isolated, depressed and navigating a health and social care system where arthritis is not prioritised. Arthritis is all too often invisible or ignored. That’s not acceptable. We need to create a sea change in recognition so that people with arthritis feel they have a voice, a sea change in the provision of services, information, care and products so people with arthritis are supported in managing to live well with arthritis, a sea change in investment in ground breaking research that creates hope for tomorrow.
Read the rest of the short interview here...
What would you say has been achieved so far?
Through the work that we’ve done together, and the expert steering from you, we have a senior team who are calmer, more confident, more able to articulate and express the story of the change that we are trying to achieve. And more able to channel that commitment and passion. It is important it is that it’s not just us. It’s the amazing people who work for the charity. It’s the wider stakeholders and broader society that we need to take with us. And in order to do that, we can’t be frantic, impatient, confused and confusing. We need to be authoritative. We need to coach. We need to support. We need to enable. And we need to look after ourselves as well as others. The work we have done together has had a phenomenal impact on our effectiveness as a leadership team and therefore our effectiveness as an organisation and the difference we’re making for people with arthritis.
Could you say a little more about that impact?
We are able to be really clear about what it is that we are trying to achieve, our goals, our responsibilities, and the outcomes that we are seeking. Our ability to clarify, to ask the right questions in the right way at the right time. And to take the time to consider the answers before moving on. We’re an organisation in a hurry, but we are now increasingly able to be measured in that hurry so that instead of feeling overwhelmed, our people feel inspired and engaged. We are increasingly able to make the complex simple and compelling. That will have a major impact on the 10 million people with arthritis, their friends and their family and wider society. Telling a complex story in a way that is simple and compelling is the biggest challenge of all.
And the tangibles?
So, in the last year, we have gone from talking about partnership with other charities in the sector to being at the point of merging with Arthritis Care. Their heritage and their approach is one of care. It’s a social model of disability and support coming together with our heritage of medical research. We’re going from two organisations doing different things but with very similar goals and outcomes to being a single organisation – a clearer, more compelling and consistent voice that’s taking away some of the complexity and confusion that exists for people with arthritis.
I don’t think that the process of the merger would have happened in such a constructive and fast-paced way unless we had been working with you guys. Because actually, as a senior team we’ve been more able to prioritize. We’ve been more able to trust one another. We’ve been more able to move forward in a purposeful way.
“Every time, they have created some magic.”
Phil Mulligan – CEO, the Landscape Institute
“The work we do makes a real difference to people and to society… We need to modernise, be attractive, develop; and that can be difficult. We have to keep a whole range of different opinions, perspectives and interest happy within one organisation.
Where One Leadership I think are at their greatest is where we have a large group of people who disagree or don’t have a shared vision; One Leadership are able to get progress and movement.
My experience of working with them is every time, they have created some magic… Every time we have exceeded the results that we could possibly have hoped for. There has been a real sense of purpose and achievement. It’s meant I’ve been able to progress on agendas that are vital.
They’re called One Leadership and they help us create one team to address our challenges.”