British Gas

Making sure your voice is heard in a large company

is no easy feat. Learn how British Gas gave a voice to

28,000 employees.

Challenge:
Prior to the formation of “One British Gas”, many of the business areas operated in a decentralised way. A lack of engaging internal communication had left employees confused and misaligned and engagement scores were flat-lining. The leadership team was determined to engage their 28,000 employees so they understood where the business is going, felt proud to be part of it, and did their best to help it succeed.

Rather than use their traditional approach of executive roadshows across the country, the Executive team agreed to try a new approach that put the first line managers at the heart of the program. This new approach reduced the reliance on the most senior managers, and focused on developing the capability of middle managers who were to be up-skilled to take messages, understand audiences and communicate in an engaging way.

Mind Gym’s psychologists worked with British Gas to craft a compelling narrative and devised a program to help communicate this in a way that got people excited about the future at British Gas.

Solution:

1. Appreciative inquiry focus groups to find pockets of greatness where the future of British Gas was already being lived today.

2. Influencer campaign

  • Identify 250 influencers from across the business
  • Run 2-day influencer camps
  • Rehearsals for the managers’ festivals (see below)

3. Stakeholder campaign

  • Top 100 events to equip senior stakeholders to lead local engagement
  • HR and IC BPs brought in to shape the local rollout

4. “Make a difference” events, run by Influencers in groups of 300 in Birmingham and Glasgow.

5. Rollout by the 3,000 managers and 250 influencers to 24,000 on front line.

Results:
The extent to which people agreed with the statement “I feel I have the opportunity each day to have my voice heard” increased by 49% from pre-event to post-event.

British Gas also saw a 26% increase in the Employee Promoter Score (a measure of how positive people feel about the business).

Awards:
This program scooped the LPI gold award for External Training Project of the Year.

It was also a featured in The Financial Times.

“Almost every British Gas employee…from the service manager or engineer to call centre worker or solar panel sales executive, seems just as enthusiastic and proud. It feels more like a start-up than a former state monopoly that was once a byword for poor customer service.” – Financial Times, October 7th, 2010

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