The HR Game Changer Blog

HR Game Changer of the Year 2018

At the start of March the L&D and HR Game Changer Conferences ran concurrently in Auckland. It was a fantastic 2 days of exploring how to transform what we deliver in learning and HR.

On the afternoon of Day 1 we had our Game Changer of the Year awards. We had 6 finalists who had all taken on and delivering initiatives to transform their businesses.

  • Julie O’Brien, OD Manager at Simpson Grierson was a finalist for the development and delivery of a new way of writing legal advice that puts the clients’ needs front and centre.
  • Ryan Ghisi, GM, Global People Programmes was a finalist for the Mindfulness initiative that was brought in at Xero. This was a part of a programme called Thrive, which focused on managing stress and building resilience, of which Mindfulness is one strategy.
  • Fiona Masson, HR Manager for LifeWise was a finalist for leading the transformation of the HR practice within the 3 Trust organisation including people plans, policy, processes, and culture development work to achieve alignment across the 3 Trusts around one vision, shared mission, values and culture.
  • Reema Chauhan, Senior OD Consultant with Coca-Cola was a finalist for the development and roll out of the Sales Capability Framework. This is a 4-year journey which has created commercial results in sales increase but also an increase in engagement scores.
  • Carol Brown, Chief Executive of RoleWorks was a finalist for creating a system that reinvents performance discussions in an organisation, by visually representing the work that people do, the roadblocks they face and other factors in how they are delivering.
  • Sarah Bulkeley, OD Advisor at Simpson Grierson was our last finalist for making mental health a focus for the wellbeing programme and part of the culture at Simpson Grierson.

HRGC finalists

The attendees at the conference voted and it was an extremely close call. There was only one vote between the runner up and the winner!

The runner up for HR Game Changer of the Year is Carol Brown from RoleWorks. Carol explained that from their research the number one thing that employees wanted to talk about with their manager was their role. Yet performance reviews are all focused on goals only. So Carol created a system that visually shows what an employee spends their time on, who they work with, what their strengths are, what their roadblocks are – and this provides a completely different way for managers to discuss performance and roles with their team. It also provides HR and Learning with a visual map of what’s happening in the company. It is changing the game in how managers discuss performance with their teams and we congratulate Carol on being runner up.

Carol Brown presenting

The winner for HR Game Changer of the Year is Julie O’Brien, OD Manager at Simpson Grierson for the development and delivery of a new way of writing legal advice that puts the clients’ needs front and centre. A template was developed to change the game on legal writing.

Julie talked about one of the biggest obstacle was convincing the lawyers that even though using the new template was difficult and far more time consuming than the old way, it would produce better results and happier clients.  She overcame this obstacle by publishing positive client feedback on the intranet.  It gathered its own momentum after that and more and more lawyers jumped on board to give the template a go.

Julie says they are continuing our focus on the advice letter template by providing workshops on ‘issue trees’ and ‘story-lining’ which teaches the writers good logic. These workshops have been hugely successful. Julie has also developed a training video as a quick refresher on how to write using the advice letter template.

Julie accepting her prize:

Julie winning

The Game Changer of the Year often takes on an initiative that isn’t strictly defined as an ‘HR or L&D’ project and delivers real change in the business. Julie has demonstrated that kind of initiative and we congratulate her on her win.

Angela Atkins is People and Learning Director at Elephant Group, and was MC of the HR and L&D Game Changer Conference. 


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This entry was posted on March 18, 2018 by in HR Awards and tagged , , , , .


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