Implementing four new leadership commitments for an entire company and crafting leadership hacks to promote a compelling corporate culture, we reconceptualized leadership for the Henkel corporation and up to 53.000 of its employees.
“Forever Day One is a key partner in our journey to sustainably drive change at Henkel. Their unique expertise in shifting mindsets and learning, plus their human-centered approaches in the design of change processes, helps us accelerate our transformation at Henkel. This and the wonderful people involved bring a breath of fresh air and honesty that challenges us and allows us to learn and grow.” Sylvie NicolMember of Henkel’s Management Board, Executive Vice President Human Resources and Infrastructure Services
Establishing a new corporate culture without losing sight of the company’s people: this was the mission of the internationally successful Henkel corporation in summer 2019. Together with board member Sylvie Nicole, we worked on initiating a sustainable mentality change and establishing a new understanding of leadership. Building on our expertise in the areas of behavioral change and learning, we implemented new leadership commitments that still guide not just managers and supervisors, but also the company’s other employees.
It’s one thing to say, “From now on, we’ll all think like entrepreneurs,” but another to seriously ask how established leadership principles find their way into the everyday work of 53,000 employees. Our answer: by rethinking leadership! Together with Jovoto, we therefore developed the Henkel Leadership Hacks: four tailor-made, easy-to-implement tricks, practices, and new working methods that can be used by both individual employees and teams to question routines and establish new working structures. The result: more efficient work, increased productivity, and greater employee satisfaction.
Besides that, we developed individualized formats for board members, such as the “Radical Truth” hack, a method to obtain direct, unfiltered feedback from across hierarchies, departments, and regions. One application of the Radical Truth hack enabled 150 top leaders at Henkel to prepare their unfiltered truths using an app – with the option of ranking them, anonymized, according to importance and then presenting them to an Executive Board Member in a joint session. The Board member had only one task: to listen.
Together we started work on a new, holistic engagement with sustainability that aimed to make sustainability everyone’s business at Henkel. Stay tuned!