Workplace Innovation helps improve performance and working lives by releasing the full range of talent, knowledge and creativity from employees at every level.

Organisational Health Check

A springboard to innovation


Our Health Checks are not about us telling you what is wrong or right with your organisation. They are about your people telling us what is wrong or right, what can be done better, what works really well and what doesn’t.

An Organisational Health Check acts as a springboard with the potential to release innovative behaviour, improve performance, enhance employee well-being and stimulate growth.

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Insight



We know the importance of listening to employees at every level in order to understand what is working and what needs to be improved.

Our reports based on employees’ own accounts of experiences at work provide boards and senior management teams with a powerful stimulus for change, and help to define priorities for action.

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Facilitating Change and Innovation

Breaking down walls and ceilings


Workplace Innovation is at the heart of performance, growth and employee well-being. Many see it but don’t know how to implement it.

We help organizations review improvement and innovation practices by breaking down walls and ceilings and creating dialogue across hierarchies and functions so that the better argument always wins.

Workplace Innovation’s facilitators work closely with leaders, managers and employees at every level, understanding their aspirations and strengths as well as what holds them back. We seek solutions co-created by all of the main stakeholders in an issue to ensure buy-in and to minimise resistance to change.


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Working with Boards and Senior Teams

Horizon-scanning, thought leadership and rehearsing the future


What will your business look like in 2024 and what will your role be in leading it?

Seeing the world in a different way should be on the job description of Directors. Change is happening and it can’t be controlled but it can be anticipated.

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Developing Emerging Leaders

From transactional to transformational


The demands of leadership are changing. At a time of significant challenge and opportunity, leaders and managers must drive improvement and innovation while motivation and energising employees. Emerging leaders must migrate from purely transactional management to proactive, transformational behaviour while current leaders must address the question of succession.

But where are the next leaders coming from and what skills and competences will they actually need?

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Interactive Theatre

Using drama to provoke thought and motivate change

Interactive theatre in the workplace is a real eye-opener. It helps to unlock employee engagement and creativity, one of the key challenges in securing successful organisational change, improving performance and enhancing working life – but it does it very differently.

You’ll see your organisations in a completely different and thought-provoking light.

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Presentations, Facilitation and Masterclasses

Stimulating, informing and resourcing innovation and change


Expert facilitation, engaging presentations, creative thinking and interactive theatre are just some of the ways we enhance and enliven conferences, time-out sessions, in-house training and team development workshops.

We can also deliver masterclasses and provide internationally recognised expert speakers covering all aspects of people centres change, employee engagement, high involvement innovation and leadership development.

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Transformational Coaching

Achieving a new culture


We know how to coach – we do it for a living. However, we are also on a mission to help managers and leaders become inspired coaches in their own right and to introduce a coaching culture to their organisations that will achieve sustainable benefits.

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Networking and Knowledge Sharing

Remember, you are not alone


Networking, knowledge sharing, the pooling of ideas and intellectual capital are the dynamics that underpin a sustainable movement of workplace innovation and provide all organisations looking to change and to challenge the future with access to the choices open to them and the experiences of others.

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Flexible ILM Leadership & Coaching Courses 

In-house and Distance Learning


Flexibility in learning is becoming increasingly important in employee development. We are experiencing a significant increase in clients needing a more flexible approach to the delivery of our ILM programmes.

Releasing staff to attend off-site public courses can cause problems for organisations, despite the obvious benefits of individuals from different backgrounds and industries sharing their experiences as they learn together. It is not always convenient for managers to block out days in their diary to attend sessions off-site, on dates that tend to be inflexible.

We recognise this and in addition to our public courses we are able to offer a range of flexible options to make it easier for organisations and individuals to access our ILM Leadership, Management and Coaching programme.

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Scotland the Brave

How Scotland’s policy-makers are leading the way in workplace innovation



In early 2016, Scotland’s Fair Work Convention set out its vision for the future of work which included a practical blueprint for Fair Work and a new type of dialogue between employers, employees and trade unions, public bodies and the Scottish Government. The aim was to support the Scottish Government's objectives of increasing sustainable economic growth and reducing inequality through the promotion of greater diversity, innovation and equality in the workplace.

Rarely in the UK has the role of policy-makers in creating a vision of the workplaces of the future been so decisive and catalytic. The challenge was taken up by Scottish Enterprise, the country’s main economic development agency, who began to work with partners in the public and private sectors to identify and exploit the best opportunities to deliver a significant, lasting effect on the Scottish economy.

The outcome was a portfolio of initiatives to promote workplace innovation, defined as the introduction of workplace practices that enable people to use and develop all of their knowledge, skills and creativity in their day-to-day jobs. Amongst the most significant of the initiatives is the two year pilot Workplace Innovation Engagement Programme (WIEP), helping companies achieve far-reaching changes that empower employees at every level to improve working practices and drive Scotland’s competitiveness and economic success. Scottish Enterprise appointed Workplace Innovation Europe Limited to deliver the WIEP programme to the first two cohorts of businesses.

Clare Alexander, Head of Workplace Innovation at Scottish Enterprise, said: “As a core driver of competitiveness and growth, people are a fundamental aspect of our delivery plan, underpinning our work with companies, in sectors and international markets.

“This is not just about how we develop and acquire the skills we need to compete, it is also about how we deploy our talent to stimulate higher levels of innovation, growth, productivity and employee engagement.

“So one of the key factors driving workplace innovation is being able to support fairer work enabling individuals to make the most of their skills, their knowledge and creativity and empowering employees to have a voice within the business.”

According to Professor Peter Totterdill, Director of Workplace Innovation Europe Limited, the challenge of delivering the Deeper Engagement Programme was to provide leaders and change agents with a robust yet practically- oriented programme which combined individual competence development with the implementation of evidence-based workplace innovation.


Asking difficult questions and challenging established practice
must become part of the working culture.


He said: “Successful transformation requires better communication, competencies and engagement, creating a culture in which everyone comes to work both to deliver their functional tasks in the best possible way and to improve the business. Asking difficult questions and challenging established practice must become part of the working culture. Successful transformation depends on “working smarter” in ways that challenge traditional boundaries and demarcations. Companies need to mobilise employee knowledge, experience and commitment in securing sustainable change. Yet such profound challenges are never easy.”

It was an important element in the programme to select participating companies capable of making the right level of commitment to secure significant and sustainable change through a combination of individual learning and organisational transformation. Two people from each company – a senior manager and a ‘change enabler’ – take part in a 9 month programme which includes an ILM accredited training programme in which they explore existing case studies including film, real-life scenarios and other creative methods in order to understand key workplace innovation concepts and the role of leaders and change agents in implementation. In this way the Structured Learning Sessions helped ensure that robust, evidence- based approaches re subsequently put into practice by participants.

The participating companies each undertake a bespoke workplace innovation project designed to generate measurable and sustainable improvements in performance, quality, cost containment, employee engagement and well-being for the business and its employees.

In the event, 10 companies* differing widely in size and profile joined the programme. Each completed a self-assessment diagnostic based on the Essential Fifth Element, an original concept developed by Workplace Innovation Europe Limited to help critically assess existing practice and offer a resource to stimulate and inform sustainable change.

The resulting ‘Action Plans’ developed by each company were peer-reviewed by the other participants in the programme, leading to important changes and refinements. Progress towards their implementation was then discussed at a number of action learning workshops where delegates acted as ’critical friends’, drawing on their own experiences to improve refine change processes and help overcome obstacles. Each company also benefitted from in-house coaching and facilitation by Workplace Innovation Europe’s expert team.


It was clear that each benefited from sharing experiences, knowledge and good practice
and from building relationships with other participants


The outcomes were extremely positive with each participant gaining an understanding of workplace innovation as a concept. The programme provokes an awareness of the business and employee benefits of workplace innovation through evidence from recent research findings and case studies. It was clear that each benefited from sharing experiences, knowledge and good practice and from building relationships with other participants. The programme had delivered actionable knowledge along with enhanced leadership and change competencies.

Donald Miller of Jedburgh based precision tool manufacturer L.S. Starrett said: “Our participation has been essential in meeting our need to adapt to changing circumstances primarily because we were a very inward looking company and it’s only when you come to this kind of programme where you realise that there are other companies with similar challenges”.

Kat Halbert, Operations Manager at the Perth office of insurance multinational Aviva, added: “This programme has already benefitted us hugely. It’s been great to hear of examples of best practice and to demonstrate some of the things that we’ve done and what works and what doesn’t. It has enabled us to think outside the box, learn about the challenges of others and take some of their experiences back to our workplace.”

Scottish Enterprise also put into practice what it was preaching by consulting with employees and implementing action plans focussed on how to get more employee voice into the organisation. Team Leader Helen Noble said: “We are now getting people at all levels of Scottish Enterprise to buy into and implement agreed action plans and begin to change the way we work. We then aim to push this outside individual directorates into other parts of the organisation as we keep building new programmes for other companies.”

Professor Totterdill commented: “It’s hard to underestimate the ambition and the achievements of Scottish Enterprise. Workplace Innovation has been on the agenda of many organisations and businesses throughout Europe and even some governments for a long time, but when the initiative gets the full backing of a national government agency and the energy that its dedicated team bring, it is clear that the outcomes will have a positive impact not only on the participating organisations but, in the long term, on the national economy.

“This is in stark contrast to the UK Government’s approach of publishing an industrial strategy green paper setting out its ten "strategic pillars" to underpin its "new" approach but with little information on how it intends to deliver its wish list, who will make it happen and how businesses and other organisations will be encouraged to participate. The objectives set out in the green paper such as investing in science, research and innovation, developing skills, supporting businesses to start and grow and cultivating world-leading sectors are not the problem but it is assumed they can be achieved without introducing new workplace practices, new ways of communication and new types of employee engagement that will create the dynamism and creativity required for sustainable change.

“The Scottish Government has realised this and if ever there was a great example of policy-makers influencing practical and effective application, the Scottish Enterprise Workplace Innovation Engagement Programme is it.”

* Deeper Engagement Participating Organisations

Aviva (Insurance, Perth), Leonardo Selex (Defence Systems, Edinburgh), Liberty Steel (Dalzell & Clydebridge), L.S. Starrett (precision tools, Jedburgh), Elanco (pharmaceutical products for animal health, Dundee), Endura (cycling apparel, Livingston), Devro (collagen casing/plastics, Chryston), DS Smith (packaging, Lockerbie), The Factory Skatepark (purpose built Skatepark, (Dundee), Cornerstone (care provider, Aberdeen).



News


Scottish Enterprise Workplace Innovation MasterclassesScottish Enterprise Workplace Innovation Masterclasses

Scottish Enterprise has announced the continuation of its nation-wide programme of workplace innovation Masterclasses confirming Scotland’s status as one of the most pro-active European countries promoting long-term sustainable economic growth through the development of inclusive and creative workplaces.

The Masterclasses will take place in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Stirling.

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Workplace Innovation Glasgow officeNew office in Glasgow

Proud to be part of Glasgow City Innovation District with our new offices at Tontine. Glasgow City Innovation District is a hub for entrepreneurship, innovation, and collaboration. It builds on Scotland’s rich tradition of scientific excellence and industrial collaboration. Tontine supports the growth and impact of businesses by providing flexible workspace, and a supportive and collaborative environment.

Meet us in Glasgow

Workplace Innovation at Booth WelshIndustry 4.0, digitalisation and the people-centred workplace

The event, Industry 4.0, digitalisation and the people-centred workplace, brought an amazing international group of companies and experts together to explore how successful organisations are engaging employees in digital transformation. The key takeaway was that technological innovation and innovation in work processes need to go hand in hand.

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Workplace Innovation at CornerstoneThe Journey towards Self-Directed Teamworking

The event 'The Journey towards Self-Directed Teamworking' was hosted by Cornerstone and CEO Edel Harris, Strategy Implementation Leader Mairi Martin and several members of their frontline teams presented one of the best examples of the journey towards self-managed teamworking that we’ve heard in 25 years! Participants from five other companies on similar journeys took part in this latest Fresh Thinking Labs event, gaining unique insights into organisational transformation.

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Fresh Thinking Labs Masterclass in Lisbon

Participants from the Workplace Innovation Engagement Programme wowed Portuguese companies with their stories of transformation at the Fresh Thinking Labs Masterclass hosted by the Instituto Portugues de Business Process Management in Lisbon last week. Aimee Doole and John Richardson (Booth Welsh), and Robert Heron (East Coast Oil & Gas), spoke passionately about how the programme has created high levels of staff engagement in idea generation, improvement initiatives and innovation.

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Scottish experience kick starts workplace innovation in Portugal

More than 60 Portuguese company representatives took part in an interactive workshop held in Porto earlier this month where the experiences of two Scottish businesses were used to demonstrate the beneficial outcomes of workplace innovation and employee-led change. The workshop was facilitated by Workplace Innovation Europe Limited who introduced Doug Johnston, General Manager at DS Smith’s Lockerbie operation and Dundee based David O’Byrne from animal pharmaceutical business, Argenta.

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Inclusive and devolved decision making at DS Smith

DS Smith Lockerbie believes in open, inclusive and devolved decision-making. As part of the company’s commitment to workplace innovation, morning meetings in the Operations Room were introduced to improve communication and enable joint planning and problem-solving amongst employees. Front line representatives from each work area take part in these meetings and use a series of visual management boards to record their daily discussions. Participants take turns in leading the meeting and are encouraged to keep the tone optimistic and collaborative.

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Creating Fair and Innovative Workplaces – An Industrial Strategy Perspective from Scotland

This policy-focused event identified the levers that make a difference in delivering inclusive growth and competitiveness. Senior representatives of UK government departments, companies and trade unions took advantage of an opportunity to hear about Scotland’s practical approach to supporting progressive people practices, and how it leads to enhanced productivity and the reduction of inequality. The workplace is facing unprecedented change as it faces the digital revolution as well as an increasingly volatile business environment.

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Workplace Innovation facilitates an in-company Mini-FabLab session at DS Smith

DS Smith is a European leading packaging company of customer-specific packaging, based in Lockerbie, Scotland. Operations Manager David Murdoch asked Peter and Rosemary from Workplace Innovation Europe, as part of the Scottish Enterprise Workplace Innovation Engagement Programme, to help involve his staff in innovative ways to improve the business. A facilitated Mini-Fab-Lab session, with front line staff representing each area across the workforce, was a new experience for DS Smith.

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Workplace Innovation Limited helps to build a very special relationship between Scotland and the Basque Country

Workplace Innovation Limited has been supporting Scottish Enterprise and the Provincial Government of Gipuzkoa in the Spanish Basque Country as each develops its own approach to promoting the uptake of workplace innovation by companies.

Read more and watch our film
Back to Scotland Leads the Way

Latest News and Events

Your invitation to a free company visit and workshop How can you ensure that your organisation is ready to take full advantage of digital technologies – and unleash the full potential of your people at the same time? Booth Welsh (https://boothwelsh.co.uk/), a specialist engineering services company based in Irvine, has been on a remarkable journey. It has transformed workplace culture and created day-to-day opportunities for staff at every level to be part of the company’s deep commitment to innovation and improvement – all part of its strategic plan to stay ahead of the competition. Booth Welsh understands that getting a full return on expensive digital investments doesn’t happen without the full engagement of its workforce, harnessing the experience and insights of people at every level, and developing the knowledge and skills they need to play a key role in this growing company’s exciting future. Martin Welsh (the company..

Workplace Innovation’s Peter Totterdill (https://www.linkedin.com/in/peter-totterdill-a2b6451/) facilitated a dynamic panel discussion at the Work Foundation Centenary Celebration (http://www.theworkfoundation.com/events/wf100-centenary-celebration/) in London last Thursday. The panel titled ‘Dynamism: Creating productive, dynamic and engaging workplaces’ included Richard Carter - Managing Director of BASF UK&Ireland, Rannia Leontaridi - Director of Business Growth, BEIS, Tony Tanker - CEO, Be the Business, and Paul Nowak - Deputy General Secretary, TUC. Key findings from the debate are: Pinch with pride, learning from other businesses and productivity ideas from your people is the future of good and productive work! Discover our new company events (http://www.workplaceinnovation.eu/FTL-Programme) Invest in your people's development (including managers) and empower them to bring ideas forward. Learn more about our Program..

A fasttrack to leadership development for change leaders We’ve had some brilliant feedback from our Leadership for High Performance workshop in Exeter and can’t wait for the repeat sessions in Glasgow and Bristol during June. Why not join us? (http://www.workplaceinnovation.eu/towards-high-performance) These workshops respond to the needs of such a diverse range of participants, coming from organisations of very different types yet learning together from evidence and experience, sharing ideas and providing mutual support. They’re also a great way of kickstarting our ILM Level 5 Certificate in Leadership & Management (http://www.workplaceinnovation.eu/lwip) programme. Find out that participants had to say (http://www.workplaceinnovation.eu/Changing-together)..

Workplace innovation is strongly grounded in evidence – and needs to stay that way In 2001, the European Commission asked Peter Totterdill and his colleagues to produce a study that would analyse evidence both from existing research and from a broad sample of one hundred highly innovative companies in six European countries. The aim of this study, known as Hi-Res¹ (#partners-at-work) was to create a practical approach designed to help companies and their employees achieve win-win outcomes in terms of business performance and quality of working lives. The concept we developed was ‘workplace innovation’. It describes workplace practices and cultures which enable employees at all levels to use their knowledge, competences and creativity to the full. Above all, workplace innovation describes a series of interlocking workplace practices that are solidly grounded in evidence. It starts with the practical problems, challenges and opportunities ..