How did the creators of FASTLEAD – a curriculum based small group coaching development program for frontline leaders – confirm that conventional two- or three-day leadership workshops weren’t working for frontline leaders?
In 2013, from facilitator debriefs following frontline leadership programs for a variety of clients was the observation that participants were increasingly disengaged in workshops. They were passive, and constantly distracted by texts and emails from their workplaces. The longer the day went on, the worse things became. We discovered later that these interruptions tended to be requests from members of their teams to solve urgent problems.
By comparison, the consultants also reported that in the small group two-hour coaching pods we had been experimenting with on several different programs, none of these problems existed. In fact, the opposite was true – frontline leader participants were engaged and energised. In these pods, using a coaching style, we talked about the real issues they faced in their workplace and explored different tactics and skills that would solve these problems.
Two surveys later, we drilled down into the learning preferences of millennial frontline leaders and had confirmed:
FASTLEAD designed by millennials for millennials
HFL has been delivering and refining FASTLEAD since that first discussion, and participant feedback is driving many of our design decisions. This has represented a host of challenges, since multiple small sessions rather than a single workshop hugely complicate delivery, logistics, content design and so on. The FASTLEAD design is now mature, slick, and highly effective for organisations and participants. It is a counter intuitive combination of a highly structured off-the-shelf solution that is nevertheless experienced by the participants as highly customised to their situation and unique challenges.