Leading and Managing with Impact - Bar Standards Office

Transforming Organisational Governance and Culture

The Client

The Bar Standards Board (BSB) regulates barristers and their professional practice and specialised legal services businesses in England and Wales. There are more than 15,000 barristers and over 1500 students on the Bar Professional Training Course.

The BSB is responsible for education and training requirements for becoming a barrister and ensuring that barristers’ skills are maintained throughout their career. They set the standards of conduct for barristers, supervise the service they provide and handle complaints against them and take disciplinary or other action where required.

BSB is a non-profit organisation responsible for ensuring that barristers maintain the highest professionalism and standards, not just at the beginning of their careers but throughout it.

The Challenge

The BSB was in the process of significant change to its governance arrangements and was seeking to improve collaboration across the organisation in order to create a stronger sense of purpose and a more confident way of presenting themselves externally. These changes placed greater emphasis on a strong leadership and management cohort across the BSB and a need to equip people to lead and embed the changes in the way that the BSB works.

Oliver Hanmer, Director of Regulatory Assurance at BSB, saw that to bring this change, it was vital to make learning outcomes stick. To do this, it was crucial to break free from the traditional training that BSB normally receives and was seeking a more experiential, innovate and interactive training method.

The Solution

When tendering for a training consultant, Impact Factory was the obvious choice as its proven Professional Personal Development method brings the unique type of training that BSB was looking for.

Working in collaboration, BSB and Impact Factory created two fully bespoke programmes:

• In the Leading with Impact programme, 8 senior leaders participated in a 5-day workshop and were able to enhance their leadership and influencing skills and learnt how to make the best choices to lead and inspire their teams.

• In the Managing with Impact sessions, 15 managers refreshed and embedded the best practical and comprehensive management skills to work, interact and communicate in a better fashion within the 4-day programme.

These training and coaching programmes were supported by practical tasks created and assigned by Oliver, who wanted the BSB leaders and managers to use and apply the learning outcomes into the daily life of the organisation immediately.

They did this by creating several focus groups across the organisation to discuss recommendations extracted from the training sessions. This meant that a majority of employees at all levels of BSB were listening, discussing and providing feedback on a new way of working, collaborating and leading the organisation. This way, it was possible to bring people together from all departments and at all levels, breaking down barriers and connecting people across the organisation to create a common goal and vision. The evidence gathered through this process will be used to effect change and to contribute to a review of the performance management and reward systems for the BSB.

The Results

1. By practising the training outcomes immediately, the main output has been to open up communication between colleagues and departments to share experiences and opinions in which everybody is invited to speak up and to work collaboratively.

2. By working in a transparent way, strong personal bonds have been created across the organisation which has transformed the way in which the BSB works, creating a new collaborative culture and a common and shared set of goals.

3. By investing in soft skills, the BSB has demonstrated its commitment to develop staff and to invest in their future potential. This has contributed to higher retention and a greater sense of job satisfaction.

As a result of the success of these programmes, BSB is now planning to create and deliver a Change Management programme with Impact Factory.

“At the outset of this programme of work, I had a very clear idea of working with a training consultant who is different, innovative, energetic, interactive, practical and transformative. And Impact Factory has brought all this. They are also very keen to work collaboratively, listen to our feedback, respond positively and make changes in the room making sure we got the best value from every session.

Impact Factory has helped the BSB transform its ways of working and achieve a more collaborative culture.”

Oliver Hanmer, Director of Regulatory Assurance at The Bar Standards Board

“It’s a pleasure to work with BSB in such a close partnership. It’s so rewarding to help an organisation like them to open up and thrive by understanding their needs and creating with them fully bespoke programmes that they were able to apply straight away. I’m looking forward to working with them on a Change Management programme.”

Janet Addison, Senior Training Consultant at Impact Factory

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