Following last weeks blog, its interesting to reflect on what has changed/happened in the last week. The NHS problems highlight where too much focus on targets, and not the overall patient experience, can lead. Barclays seem to have taken some major steps towards improving their culture.
I remember once going to A&E in Macclesfield after work with an infected arm that required an Antibiotic drip. After just under 4 hours not being seen I was informed I would be admitted on the ward overnight. When I asked why, a rather honest member of staff admitted if I was not seen in 4 hours that was a major issue, but as soon as I was admitted then I would no longer show on the measure. Metrics over doing the right thing! In our IT world, sometimes we also get too focused on metrics and measures – they are important, but so is understanding your customers experience and the perception of service. Anyway, I had a nice night in hospital, breakfast and then went into work the next day!
Barclays have taken some interesting steps in the last week. Things have happened on two of the key points I talked about last week.
Culture is set by those at the top; clearly the new CEO has a vastly different approach to Bob Diamond and is showing that by his own personal actions. I think he is also demonstrating my second point – culture can be changed quickly with bold decisive steps. His decision to close down an aggressive tax avoidance unit and other steps are very visible, clearly the impact on culture can be only seen internally but the share price has certainly recovered. I will be talking to colleagues who work at Barclay’s with interest to see what effect it is having on the ground.
As part of searching for a new role, I am experimenting with social media and also went to a very interesting session on Personal Branding. In the interests of keeping my blogs short, I’ll leave that till next week. As a taster, got some very interesting insights, found some powerful websites that analyse all your personal online coverage, and ended up helping the Career Transition (that’s the modern name for outplacement) consultant set up her own website. Not sure who is supposed to be coaching who!! I’ll summarize some of the key points next week.
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Hi Mark, keep the blogs going. Couldn’t agree more about hiding behind metrics, if the customer is happy and their feedback reported independently then a lot of the other measures (though should still be measured) take secondary importance.
Totally agree Keith, and by the way congratulation on the 4* service desk awards.
Good blog and I agree about the over importance sometimes placed on stats/MI. My kids school hand out rewards for 100% attendance as it makes their stats look good… But the kids that get the rewards come into school when they are ill and infect everyone else! Also, these kids are some of the worst behaved in the school, so how is that rewarding the right culture?! But at least they improve the MI!!!!!