”We would probably not have found the problem if we hadn’t used &frankly”, says Lars-Olof Moberg, office manager at Länsförsäkringar. This is the story on how Lars-Olof Moberg and his team succeeded in reversing a negative spiral.
Indistinct structures and high stress levels among employees. These were a few of Lars-Olof Moberg’s challenges when he took over as office manager at Länsförsäkringar in Allingsås. &frankly enabled him to locate the problems and establish a dialogue. The responses made clear what needed to be done to create more drive in the organisation.
In only three years, the office succeeded in increasing profitability by 30 per cent, at the same time as customer satisfaction rose from well below average to best in the region. Customer satisfaction is particularly important as Länsförsäkringar is a customer-owned company.
– My strategy was to create stability. I wanted to have figures to help me structure our dialogues, base discussions on, and was looking for a user-friendly tool.
&frankly fit Lars-Olof Moberg’s needs perfectly.
– I was able to get feedback from the employees in real time and that attracted me. Furthermore, the app’s actual interface is ”gamified” and both fun and user-friendly. That's a good strategy to increase response frequency.
Recently, Lars-Olof Moberg used &frankly in relation to a group of employees who had challenges. They had a complex role in the organisation and a high level of stress. This was revealed in the responses that were received when Lars-Olof Moberg asked questions about well-being and stress. However, the responses simultaneously indicated that the employees did not perceive their actual workload as particularly high compared with other roles in the organisation.
So, where was the problem located?
– Comparatively low work load, but high level of stress. The equation didn’t make sense. When we started to investigate more closely it transpired that the stress was fundamentally a communication problem. The employees felt they were not receiving the information they needed to be able to do their job in time. There were no satisfactory procedures.
It was an incentive to reformulate the role and manage the communication. We would probably not have discovered the problem if we hadn’t used &frankly.
Today Lars-Olof Moberg is operations manager for all of Länsförsäkringar Älvsborg’s nine offices in the region. He tries to get out among the employees as much as possible, however, the geography makes it a bit tricky.
– &frankly is a great tool for picking up warning signals in time. It enables us to make an effort at an early stage, he explains.
The organisation primarily uses three different question packages. They provide a regular measurement of well-being and stress, objective in relation to personal role, as well as communication.
The banking and financial industry is bound by a lot of rules and regulations which are sometimes difficult to interpret and new ones are constantly being added.
– We ask questions on a continuous basis in order to ensure that the employees are feeling secure in managing the different regulations, GDPR for example. If we notice that there is uncertainty, we can put in additional training where needed and then simply track the results to see how we're doing.
An important lesson that Lars-Olof Moberg has drawn is how important it is that all employees understand their roles, mandate and areas of responsibility.
– The fact is that we all have a task to fulfil and it must be clear. I used to say what the task was and I then received feedback on it. But I noticed that discrepancies and questions were constantly being asked regardless.
Lars-Olof Moberg, who often lectures on digital leadership, is located in a sector where everything moves quickly and roles are constantly changing.
– We now ask questions more regularly. When we see the responses in front of us, it is easier to create dialogue at our meetings. In nine out of ten cases, we have not been as clear as we thought and there are always things to discuss.
He says that he also uses &frankly spontaneously, for example, to obtain points of view on what needs to be discussed in advance for a meeting. He notes how the employees have reacted to the tool.
– I ask a question at lunchtime and two hours later I have received lots of good responses and comments. As a manager, there is so much you want to know, but I think it is good to address one or two topics at a time, so that you really have time to work through them. There is no point in measuring just for the sake of it. If you ask a question you should highlight the response. &frankly is a tool to initiate dialogue and create change, Lars-Olof Moberg says.
As something of an expert in digital leadership, Lars-Olof Moberg feels that dialogue is the most important tool, but it requires a solid foundation which &frankly provides.
– &frankly is about picking things up. It can’t be emphasised enough that this tool is there for a reason – so that we can help each other grow. Both as people and in our jobs.