Speak Up Culture change – How AAR has driven change in one Europe wide business

The AAR approach is most effective when aligned to an organisations’ purpose and strategy. This case study describes one Footsie 100 hundred businesses introduction of AAR and the outcomes from the training on individuals’ behaviour.

Case Study

As part of a strategic initiative to modernise the culture in a large European business 62 staff in 10 countries were selected to train as AAR Conductors. A few of the Leadership team had first-hand experience of the After Action Review approach and understood that it was a perfect driver of the “speak up” culture  and continuous improvement mindset they wanted to foster. So, the engagement and interest in the roll out of the AAR approach was strong at the most senior level, and responsibility for communications and management of the project was assigned to the European Head of HR.

Most of the participants selected were at business manager level plus a few country business managers and HR partners and were chosen as they were respected by their colleagues and well placed in their careers to be champions of the approach.

Prior to start the five, 2 hour online workshops, all participants were invited to complete a “baseline” survey to assess the degree of psychological safety they experience at work and the type of learning behaviours they practiced.  Two later post-training surveys created the opportunity to assess what impact the training had made on the participants, at 6 weeks after the training and then again 3 months later. As well as assessing changes in the psychological safety and learning behaviours, using Prof Amy Edmondson’s research questions, the surveys also sought to evaluate the training itself using Kirkpatrick’s framework.

Whilst the intent of the workshops was to provide the participants with the knowledge and skills to be AAR Conductors, it has also led to beneficial changes in other areas. The conducting of AARs is an educational experience and this in turn is supporting the confidence to speak out as the survey results demonstrate changes have continued to strengthen beyond the initial post training period.

The results of these surveys indicate that the AAR Conductors have:

    1. Increased their confidence to speak up. The average score out 7 for the statement “I feel confident about raising concerns/matters which impact the business” increased from 5.69 pre-training to 5.70 to 5.74 over the 3 surveys.  The average score for the statement “I am likely to speak up if I see something that doesn’t look right” increased from 5.87 to 6.00 to 6.19
    2. Increased scores for all the indicators of “learning behaviours”, for example, “Making time for reflection and learning” moved from an average score out of 7 from 3.79 pre-training to 4.71 post-training
    3. Felt more psychologically safe and done things to foster psychological safety in their own team, especially “encouraging productive conflict and constructive debate” which moved from an average score out of 7 from 4.6 pre-training to 5.61 after training and the score for “sharing information about what does and doesn’t work” moved from 5.1 to 5.7
    4. Changed the way they speak to people, increasing engagement and problem solving, applying knowledge gained from the training 81% agreed/strongly agreed
    5. Applied knowledge from the training to handle difficult situations better 65% agreed/strongly agreed
    6. Felt the iTS AAR CDP was a valuable use of their time 89% agreed/ strongly agreed
    7. Saw the value of the AAR approach being fully rolled out in the organisation. 93% agreed/strongly agreed.
    8. Had led AARs since completing the training 52%
    9. Participated in AARS 61%
    10. Called for an AAR 35%

Let’s start something new!

Get in touch with us today and take the first steps to transforming your business.