Graphic of team members

When businesses typically talk about re-investment, it means they are referring to technology or infrastructure, or new premises.

Whilst these are all important factors for business performance, we know that the value ultimately comes from the people we employ; their ability to perform at their best, and capacity to keep innovating, as the world continually demands a new version of what best looks like.

Setting clear performance expectations, supported through coaching, mentoring, learning and development means that individuals are given the opportunity to grow and adapt. Without this type of structure, there is a real risk of skills and knowledge becoming out of date, and team members losing fulfilment in their roles through lack of progression.

A culture for learning

Progeny has a unique multidisciplinary offering of professional services which in itself brings together people with differing backgrounds and working preferences.

As we acquire and integrate additional firms into Progeny, we bring different histories, experience and perspectives into the team.  So how do we ensure this comes together to create a coherent, high-functioning, forward-looking whole? Research tells us that the first step in forming a really strong and high performing team is trust. Fundamental to building trust is our ability to understand each other better, recognise different working styles, and celebrate our differences.  Taking a ‘team’ perspective on this allows people to be themselves, play to their strengths and collaborate to deliver against any weaknesses.

As L&D Director, it’s my responsibility to help achieve this and to drive the investment in people across this uniquely combined business. For me, learning and development is so much more than training. Rather than a focus on ‘delivering to’ delegates on a training course, our ambition is to create a culture for learning, and provide the tools, resources and support for individuals to dictate their own path and pace.  This starts with us holding a mirror up to ourselves and building a development plan from there.

Expressing our preferences

To learn about ourselves as a senior executive team we have been working with an accredited consultant to guide us through the insights of the Myers Briggs Type Indicator™ (MBTI) tool and it’s relevance to our potential performance.

“MBTI™ results identify valuable differences between normal healthy people, differences that can be the source of much misunderstanding and miscommunication.”  In practice, the process enables participants to appreciate that we all have preferences, and there is no right or wrong.

Understanding how our own preferences differ from those around us enables smarter thinking about how we might communicate an idea or viewpoint, or how we can improve our joint approach to decision making.  By removing the distractions of misunderstanding and miscommunication, we can work more effectively and productively together as a team and a business. The MBTI™ assessment has proven beneficial in a number of applications:

  • Self-understanding and individual development
  • Team Building
  • Management and Leadership training
  • Career development and exploration
  • Problem solving

For us, this has been the start of a discovery process for the executive team and is just one strand of our overall learning and development programme. Our intention is to extend this element of learning and development across the business over the course of 2021 and beyond.

Everything we have planned is about taking a purposeful, intentional and forward-looking approach to building a really great and diverse team.

How it helps our clients

Our mission at Progeny is to be the most trusted professional advisory firm in the UK and beyond.  In order to achieve that, we must unite and deliver as a strong team.  Performing as a team requires us to know each other’s strengths and how we can make the most of them.

The MBTI™ process has also highlighted that our preferences mean we will look at things from different perspectives.  Applying multiple viewpoints to our client experience process means we can perform a more thorough and critical evaluation of what is working well, and where we can make further improvements for the benefit of our clients.

Leading a business during lockdown and in a virtual environment, it becomes even more critical to quickly evaluate how we work, and how our different approaches can be a benefit to the business and everybody we work with.

Joining the business during lockdown, I have watched the teams adapt and update processes to ensure that our clients still benefit from service, security and engagement in this virtual context.

Working together virtually has demanded everyone to be flexible, learn new skills, and communicate in different ways.  With a learning culture to build, this is a great position to start from.

If you would like to discuss your professional services needs, please get in touch.

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Liz Pemberton

Director of Learning & Development

Liz joined the Progeny team in April 2020 to lead the Learning & Development strategy for our growing business.

Learn more about Liz Pemberton