Sir Robert McAlpine

Construction Leadership Training Through a Pandemic.

The Challenge

After launching their successful Leadership Development Programme (LDP) for top-tier leaders, Sir Robert McAlpine (SRM) focused on filling the development gap for middle managers in the construction leadership training landscape. Recognising their crucial role in driving operational success and shaping the company’s leadership image, SRM sought to empower these managers with the skills, knowledge, and behaviours needed to achieve business objectives.

The Management Development Programme (MDP) aimed to enhance team performance while embedding behavioural competencies for effective management. Designed to align with the LDP, the MDP ensured consistency in themes and messaging to maximise the impact of both programs.

As the global economy faced the unprecedented challenges of COVID-19, SRM sought innovative solutions to deliver the MDP and support middle managers in navigating this new landscape. Their focus remained on equipping managers with the tools to tackle emerging obstacles and continue driving their teams towards success.

The Solution

Innovation Central triumphed with its construction leadership training tender, presenting a comprehensive programme built around four essential development themes:

  • Embracing personal impact
  • Mastering skills for delivery
  • Cultivating engaging abilities
  • Making a lasting impression

In response to COVID-19, Innovation Central offered face-to-face and blended online delivery options, ensuring SRM’s confidence in the programme’s resilience amidst unprecedented challenges.

Upon winning the contract, Innovation Central collaborated closely with SRM’s L&D team, engaging Divisional Boards and potential participants for input and feedback. This ensured the programme’s content aligned with the organisation’s needs and left no learning opportunities unexplored.

With national lockdowns in effect, a blended learning approach was chosen, featuring:

  • Eight virtual learning sessions via Microsoft Teams
  • Five self-directed activities combining workplace tasks and reflective exercises
  • One-on-one coaching sessions and check-ins for ongoing support

Hosted on Innovation Central’s platform, Boost, the programme unfolded step-by-step, maintaining a manageable learning journey. Interactive guides and diverse media formats kept delegates engaged throughout the five-month duration.

Securing buy-in from delegates’ line managers was critical. Innovation Central facilitated webinars and produced support packs, enabling a seamless learning transition from the programme to the workplace.

After finalising the programme’s design, Innovation Central partnered with SRM to apply for CITB Leadership & Management Development Fund support, ultimately securing 95% funding for the programme’s delivery.

The Results

Any construction leadership training has to make a significant impact, and this Management Development Programme (MDP) has certainly achieved that, with ongoing results. Here’s a snapshot of the programme’s remarkable achievements:

  • 248 delegates across 20+ cohorts have benefited from the programme
  • Boost, the learning platform, sees an impressive 9,003 average content views per cohort (630 views per delegate)
  • Most viewed modules: Self-awareness, Unconscious Bias, and Big Picture Thinking
  • Active participation: 41.5 average comments per cohort in Boost-hosted collaboration exercises

Delegates report significant effectiveness in these areas post-programme:

  • Valuing diverse preferences and working styles
  • Grasping their role in the bigger picture
  • Managing inclusively and without bias
  • Adapting their approach to various situations

Boost’s tracking shows peak delegate learning activity on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Tuesdays. There’s also a noticeable increase in interactions with BIP, the internal goal-setting tool. As a result, SRM’s behavioural competency framework is now deeply embedded in performance conversations and processes.

Thanks to the programme’s demonstrated impact, 95% of its funding is provided by the CITB Leadership & Management Development Fund.

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