Diverse companies have a competitive edge
Time and time again research has shown that companies with a diverse workforce have a competitive edge; different people means different ideas, innovation and business success. From the outset, Skanska wanted a high-impact leadership development solution to create inclusive and inspiring leaders who would be able to effectively manage and champion diverse talent. This would offer professional development for individual leaders and deliver a shift in organisational culture to ensure that Skanska are able to attract, retain and develop diverse talent.
“The programme is a learning experience for both parties. You’re able to hone in on guiding and listening skills as a coach, as well as getting insight into young people’s outlook and career ambitions.”
– Programme Participant, Skanska UK
Skanska UK: Inclusive Coaching Skills 2018 Cohort
This year’s Inclusive Coaching Skills programme includes 32 future leaders from Skanska UK and coachees from Arrival Education’s network of diverse young talent. Inclusive Coaching Skills supports Coaches’ progress in the remits of inclusive leadership, coaching and understanding how to manage diverse teams. By working with socially and ethnically diverse young talent from Arrival Education’s vast network, they are given the opportunity to gain new perspectives, develop new skills and experience the insights and fresh ideas of young people from non-traditional backgrounds.
As part of the Inclusive Coaching Skills 9-month programme, coaches receive training in Arrival Education’s unique CAUSE coaching model, which equips leaders and managers with the skills, insights and experience necessary to get the best out of diverse teams.
The CAUSE model was created when it became clear that other coaching models were missing crucial elements required to build authentic coaching relationships with individuals from radically different backgrounds. CAUSE helps managers and leaders overcome concerns about working with someone from a very different background, culture or age group and be able to have coaching conversations which lead to positive outputs and high levels of engagement.
Comprehensive Coaching Framework
In addition to CAUSE training, the 9-month programme provides a comprehensive coaching framework which coaches can use to plan, set and measure goals, progress and achievements for both themselves and their coachee. Progress is reviewed every 4 – 6 weeks at a coaching session, where both coach and coachee consider developments since they last met and create action plans for the next 4 – 6 weeks. In each session, coach and coachee discuss a particular characteristic typical of successful people and consider how well they currently reflect these characteristics themselves, using a carefully designed scoring system. They then sense-check each other’s scores and make plans for improvement.
The midpoint session is an opportunity for all of the participating coaching pairs to come back together halfway through the programme, assess their progress and hear about the experiences of their colleagues who are also involved. During this session, coaches and coachees are split up and placed in groups where they could discuss accomplishments, challenges and changes in their behaviour and/or the behaviour of their coach or coachee. Participants are encouraged to reflect on their progress so far and consider the value of different perspectives.
“The way Skanska conduct their work is admirable and I felt an inclusive vibe from the beginning.The ‘Leading with Purpose’ programme offered me a chance to really understand the company.”
– Ibrahim, Inclusive Coaching Skills Participant
During the session participants also hear from experienced keynote speakers about the value of diverse backgrounds and how the challenges that they can present can be turned into opportunities. Speakers guide participants through exercises where they identify what they consider their most significant barriers to success to be; they are then showed how these barriers can actually be turned in to advantages and used to accelerate their progress and development. Midpoint sessions run as follows:
- Reflections on the past 4 months
- Speed coaching exercises
- Delegates discuss successes and challenges from the last 4 months
- Keynote speaker: discusses purpose, leadership and realisation of self
- Summary, looking ahead and next steps
Socially and Ethnically Diverse Young Talent
For the talented young people – aged 18-24, from low-income communities, Inclusive Coaching Skills gives them access to a coach from the corporate world, who can support them in understanding the process required to effectively make their own decisions about their career and wider life. Having access to a coach with corporate experience is an excellent resource for the young people involved in the programme, since it offers unrivalled insight into the reality of corporate life and provides them with knowledge it is often hard to gain unless you know the right people.
Following the success of the Inclusive Coaching Skills midpoint session, we are looking forward to hearing all about the progress made by all involved in the second half of their programme!
Arrival Education works with leading organisations including Skanska, Artemis, Investec, Coutts, ASOS, GSK and many more. If you would like to work with Arrival Education to improve your organisation’s approach to social and ethnic diversity, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and a member of our corporate sales team will be in touch.
If you are a young person aged 18 – 26 who would like to receive updates about career opportunities and events, you can register to be part of the Arrival Network here.