Case Study – Hearing Dogs: Strategising our People Focus

A hearing dog sitting and waiting for instruction

As a successful charity approaching our 40th year, we realised we’d reached a time when we needed a new people architecture to support and develop our teams whilst ensuring we were all aligned with the behaviours we were growing and demonstrating.

Given our stage of cultural evolution we opted for receiving bespoke people tools that would give us some rigour to the performance management process and people development.  Collaborating with Space2Be throughout the journey, the yearlong project was split into 3 phases.   It quickly became clear that we needed to use this opportunity to start with ensuring our charity and functional strategies were up to date and that our management teams engaged with the ‘what’ and ‘how’ of our charity’s intentions, so this was our starting place.

Karen Griffin ran several strategy workshops across our leadership and management teams, and Karen’s customised approach has helped a number of our senior team quickly embrace a greater awareness of effective people development. The outputs were not only 5 charity and functional fit for purpose strategies, each with underpinning action plans, but also, our management and leaders were engaged.  They had felt part of the strategy crafting process and enjoyed being involved.

We then moved onto the more traditional people elements of the work; the design of a competency behavioural framework, a ‘value re-fresh’, job mapping and a capability development strategy. Karen’s technical and operational knowledge of how these all fit together and what we need to do to ensure its efficient implementation was really useful. Again, we involved all managers so they felt engaged every step of the way.

The final stage was the design and delivery of the training to support the managers in how to provide ‘inspiring performance’ conversations.  Whilst we had done some of this before, we needed an update and the managers needed to be introduced to the new tools.  Unfortunately COVID-19 came along requiring this to be delivered virtually, however, this turned out to be just as successful. Karen flexed the delivery to 3 shorter sessions with lots of breakout opportunities and her energetic style kept us all entertained.

As the HR Director for Hearing Dogs for Deaf People, I am really pleased with the progress we’ve made and feel that the support that Karen has provided has been exceptional.

I would highly recommend Karen and Space2BE to anyone with strategy and people projects.   Importantly our CEO, Michele Jennings is impressed with her delivery and ways of working, thus providing the following testimonial:

“We have worked with Karen Griffin for over a year, initially to help develop, facilitate and capture our organisations 5 year strategic plan.  Karen has been focused, professional and great fun throughout the whole process – all our teams have enjoyed working with her.  I doubt you will find someone more enthusiastic or energetic than Karen – she brings her A-game to every session, and I believe we received great value for money and an excellent result”

By:  Jo Gray, HR Director of Quality & Human Resources