Spirax Sarco - Transforming a Geographically Dispersed Team into a Collaborative Matrix
Spirax-Sarco Engineering plc is a multi-national industrial engineering group with a direct presence in over 65 countries. It has three core businesses providing expertise in control and management of steam, electric thermal solutions, peristaltic pumping and associated fluid path technologies.
IG worked with Sheldon Banks, Divisional Director Americas of Spirax Sarco, part of the Steam Specialties business unit, as well as a team of General Managers across the region, spanning Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Mexico, Peru, and the US, and functional leaders in HR, Finance, Strategy and Technology.
Sheldon Banks was tasked with transforming the Americas region from a collection of operating companies into a collaborative team with the ability to leverage its scale, collective strength and geographical reach and to support growth. This shift away from a country focus into a new strategic forum called the Americas Division was set to involve a change in the operating model, and the implementation of a matrix structure. This would entail a broader collaboration among the team, the import and export of ideas, talent and resources and a collective shift in focus towards growth at a divisional level.
What we did:
The IG team worked the Spirax Sarco team over an 18-month period. The IG team coached each of the General Managers and the functional leaders to prepare the GMs for the transition to a matrix model as well as the leadership changes associated with the new operating model. The programme took place in the UK, Mexico, and Dominican Republic. IG facilitated workshops to develop clear understanding of the new team purpose and mandate.
“We worked one on one with an internationally experienced senior leadership team. Our approach is to be a part of the change which meant IG was involved in team meetings. This enabled us to gain perspective, understand and analyse the situation, and go on to work and develop the big themes and create meaningful change.”
The coaching transformed the multicultural dispersed group of senior managers into a cohesive team which operates better in a matrix and which is now more expectant of individuals and their contributions. The organisation of division meetings has changed, not the frequency, but the performance of the meeting which are now outcome based, with better sharing of ideas, good practice and focusing on execution.
“We cannot underplay how much IG helped this coalition of senior managers find our purpose in working together. IG put the effort in to get to know us, instead of applying something off the shelf, and built our trust by being authentic, honest, and consistent. With a high degree of precision, they got to the key points quickly and we have started to reap the benefits. We have created an environment where we have permission as a team to agree, disagree, have a discussion, and share opinions. When we come together it is important, we share to make progress. Best practice sharing is now a strong feature of the Americas Division and there is a lot of new opportunity.”
“IG helped us explore the role of leadership in culture change. When you have signed up to change, when you go back to your business, the role of the leader is essential, and IG helped us with this big subject.”