MiningCo*, part of a multinational mining enterprise, found itself at a crossroads. To achieve a bold growth strategy and improve the company's safety record, MiningCo needed to overcome several daunting cultural challenges. Its workforce was highly fragmented, divided by geography, operations, language and widespread illiteracy. At the same time, the company also needed to improve strained relations between management and its powerful employee unions.
As a result of these cultural rifts, MiningCo rarely hit production targets, leading analysts to question the company's ability to achieve expected growth. It also was losing top talent to competitors. To restore confidence, the CEO needed to ensure that the company was united by shared values, a major step towards putting MiningCo on track for sustained growth.
Developing a transformational change plan required Bain to help the CEO and top leadership quickly define a new set of cultural values.
- Set the vision. Our diagnostic tools allowed them to identify new values and build a consensus around new ways of working.
- Design the roll-out plan. We worked with senior management to craft a plan for embedding cultural change, including the CEO communicating that change is his top priority.
- Roll out and refine. The collaboratively developed launch plan was designed to deliver quick wins and long-term improvements—new safety standards, language training, community projects and employee awards.
We helped MiningCo's leadership turn broad themes into a set of clearly defined values for improved performance and accountability, teamwork, safety, respect, integrity and pride.
We used workshops and focus groups to gather feedback and refine the definitions.
We then worked with management and employee representatives to design a program of changes to put those new values into practice. This included changes to dressing rooms and bus stops for mine staff, new language requirements to ease communications between supervisors and staff and many other adjustments.
With Bain's detailed launch plan, MiningCo rolled out its cultural transformation companywide. To speed adoption, we led personal change workshops with managers. To embed the new values in MiningCo's culture, we identified change champions at all management levels. And we enabled the CEO to track success by developing concrete metrics. They show that MiningCo has improved performance and is making strides towards reaching its growth targets.
For workers, a culture with well defined values and committed teamwork means a safer workplace—since working with Bain, MiningCo has recorded its longest period to date without a fatality.
* We take our clients' confidentiality seriously. While we've changed their names, the results are real.