Organisation Culture Development


Client: Large Regional Local Government Council

The Regional Local Government Council’s CEO had developed a revised strategic plan designed to improve service delivery.  To do this successfully the organisation needed to work smarter through a focus on culture, building capability at the leadership levels, increasing engagement in achieving Council’s goals and objectives and demonstrated commitment to working in accordance with Council Values. 

Our Director and team developed a strategically aligned Organisation and Cultural Development Program that addressed the organisation’s goals, objectives and expectations whilst building leadership and general employee capability.  

A key element of the program design was a focus on driving accountability and responsibility to the appropriate levels in the organisation, so that ‘managers manage’ at their appropriate level.  The building of internal capability to support the sustainable delivery of the Council’s strategic plan was also a core design feature.

The approach and methodology delivered a systemic and comprehensive program including:

  • A strategically and values aligned description of the target culture through significant employee engagement.

  • A practical program for leaders and employees to build understanding, engagement and embedding of the target culture and the link to enabling the strategic direction.

  • A leadership development program, customised to each level, to support the leaders to create and lead a strategically enabling culture, enhancing their overall leadership effectiveness.

  • Internal resource capability development to support the ongoing embedding of the target culture.

  • Organisational Pulse Surveys to monitor progress.

The program was delivered through a number of phases. (See below)

Diagnosis and Program Design

The Director and Team worked closely with the client to develop an understanding of the current culture, identify the required culture to deliver on the strategic objectives and analysis of the gap between current and required cultures.  The approach provided every employee with an opportunity to provide input into the current and target culture utilising a simple, time-efficient and cost-effective engagement approach, that resulted in significant and sustained employee engagement and commitment to the values, behaviours and strategically enabling culture. 

The team worked with the Executive Leadership group to identify the key culture levers required to achieve the strategically enabling culture.  A key component was to ensure understanding of initiatives/actions currently underway and which can be integrated and leveraged during the program, identification of those that needed to be introduced and those that need to be ceased in order to achieve the target culture.

The program design and implementation resulted in clear behavioural expectations, rapid engagement, commitment and shifts in culture through all levels of the organisation using the Council Values as the platform.

Organisation and Culture Transformation

Working with the Council Leaders

The Director and team developed and facilitated a program to equip the leaders with the knowledge, skill and awareness to effectively create and lead the culture in their areas of responsibility and supports them to lead the achievement of the organisation’s strategic goals.  The program was delivered through a range of individual and collective leadership interventions, including education workshops, on the job application, internally led peer group coaching program and individual coaching support.  A key design component was to create platforms for leaders to purposefully engage with their peers, which also had the result of increasing the efficiency of delivery and cross-collaboration between groups and reducing silos across directorates.

Working with the Organisation

The program included the creation of an internal group of ‘champions’ who are a representative cross-section of the organisation.  The team developed and facilitated a program to build the capability of the group to champion the culture, facilitate internal education sessions, support of leaders to build understanding, application and commitment to the values and culture.   The champions delivered a key role in reaching every part of the geographically dispersed (indoor and outdoor) workforce.

The internal capability build and ownership from leaders through to all levels of employees was at the core of the program and important in enhancing engagement across the organisation.

To achieve this, the program included the development of monthly activities designed to make the culture relevant/ practical for every area of the council.  The Team provided a framework and guidance for leaders and champions to develop and deliver consistent culture activities. These were able to be customised to suit the diverse operational requirements of the organisation.


Measures of Success

An Organisational Pulse Survey was undertaken 12 months into implementation, reporting very high engagement with the culture and observations of leaders leading the culture 

  • 93% reported being personally committed to culture and values.

  • 89 % were personally working toward aligning their behaviour to the culture and values.

  • 57% have observed people throughout the Council working to align their behaviours to the culture and values.

  • 61% believe we are making progress towards improving the culture and values.

A second Pulse Survey undertaken in April 2018 reported continued strong engagement along with positive improvements in observations of leaders leading the culture.  This recent survey also gauged employee pride in the organisation, with the results reported being above the strategic target.

  • 92% reported being personally committed to culture and values.

  • 90 % were personally working toward aligning their behaviour to the culture and values

  • 63% have observed people throughout the Council working to align their behaviours to the culture and values.

  • 66% believe we are making progress towards improving the culture and values

  • 76% feel proud to work for the Council (strategic target was 70%).

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