The following story was shared by Ferguson Enterprises, the largest plumbing wholesale distributor in North America.
Client: A metal beverage packaging division at Ball Corporation.
Problem: The manufacturing plant's leadership self-identified several opportunities for improvement to reach the next level of performance in terms of production results, leader performance, employee engagement, and increased team stability.
Cause/Diagnosis: Plant leadership revalidated team roles and responsibilities to address areas of inconsistent performance. This included a restructuring of the entire leadership team. The leaders concluded that improving goal alignment and leader behaviors would improve team engagement and allow the plant to reach the next level of business performance.
Additionally, more than 50 percent of critical leaders planned to retire within five years, and a renewed focus on building bench strength for these key leaders required a bottom-up review and system adjustments.
Methods/tools: Ball designed, developed, and implemented a leader performance improvement system, designated by senior leadership as a top training and development priority. The system was intended to better align the organization and improve leader behaviors by leveraging the strengths identified within the plant.
The program's components included:
- individual development plans for key leaders based on high-performance behaviors, and team scorecards to communicate daily performance goals
- leadership and business training programs
- a coaching program that matched leaders' developmental needs with cross-discipline subject matter experts
- a reorganization that dissipated dysfunctional teams and realigned the organization to promote higher performance
- identification of high-impact process improvement projects aimed to remove barriers to daily job performance
- a modernized promotion and succession planning process and substitute leader qualification system to reduce disruption caused by turnover.
The system was integrated into Ball's existing exemplary entry-level employee onboarding practices, filling a critical gap in the career development process and creating a comprehensive approach to leadership development.
Results: Within 12 months, the plant yielded a return-on-investment of more than $3,090,000, increased production by 84,000,000 cans, and improved customer complaints by 50 percent.