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Find out how Laughology has used the science of happy organisations to improve performance at public and private sectors throughout the UK

NWG Innovation festival

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NWG Innovation festival

The Northumbrian Water Group Innovation Festival is unique, pioneering a five-day event focused on championing new ways of thinking to address real-world problems. Attendees work on sprints, or short practical sessions, to develop hacks and solutions to a range of challenges.  You can watch how it played out here

The challenge:

The festival is designed to get young people excited about STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and maths). It is fun and dynamic and gets participants working together using creativity and imagination to solve real-life challenges. Attendees participate in sprint sessions in which they are posed challenges related to a STEM topic and encouraged to come up with as many solutions and practical ideas as possible. 

In order to get the most from these sessions, participants are encouraged to use creativity and imagination. Fearlessness and confidence help them present their ideas. The ethos of the event is that there is no such thing as a bad idea or a stupid question. Organisers wanted to help participants by providing workshops throughout the event that helped them develop creative thinking, communication skills and resilience.

What we did:

We used our expertise with young people and designed workshops that explored resilience, communication, growth mindset and cognitive flexibility. Importantly the workshops had to be fun, engaging and dynamic. We ran over 30 of these mini workshops on personal skills for eight to 18 year olds, adjusting content for the age of the audience. These sessions were delivered across four days by five of our facilitators to over 1300 young people.

The results:

The sessions were well attended and lively. They gave participants confidence to engage in collaborative sessions with while thinking creatively and solving problems.  Watch the success of the event here

More Laughology Case Studies

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  • BNP Paribas

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    Laughology worked with BNP Paribas to develop a programme which taught the art of effective communication to participants on the bank’s fast-track management scheme

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  • Severn Trent Water

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  • O2

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    Telecoms provider O2 wanted to create a leadership-led culture where people could have ‘great conversations that matter, making every day better through personal experiences that count’.

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  • Trafford

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    Laughology was engaged at a time when the Trust was undergoing a transformation process and was attempting to save costs to invest more in its core mission.

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  • Fujitsu

    Fujitsu Case Study

    International tech firm Fujitsu runs a two-year graduate programme designed to develop skills for work and future leaders. The cohort from this programme is drawn from all over Europe.

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  • NWG Innovation Festival

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  • Created on .

Fujitsu learning & development case study

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FUJITSU GRADUATE PROGRAMME CASE STUDY

International tech firm Fujitsu runs a two-year graduate programme designed to develop skills for work and future leaders. The cohort from this programme is drawn from all over Europe. Laughology was engaged to design and deliver a digital learning component to the programme to help boost delegates’ soft skills.

The challenge:

What we did:

Graduates enter the company with academic and vocational qualifications but have less experience of vital soft skills such as resilience and problem-solving as well as leadership skills. In addition, the transition between education and workplace is challenging, particularly given the demands of tech sector workplaces, which are fast-paced and constantly evolving. To thrive, graduates need to have an elevated skill set that allows them to embrace change, communicate effectively, solve problems, be resilient, cope with challenge and think creatively. The aim was to help delegates hone these skills and learn to spot challenges, discuss them with their managers and to find solutions, while also being aware of their own mental health and that of others.

We created a six-part programme which comprised one initial face-to-face session, delivered when the cohort was together in the UK. In this session we concentrated on problem-solving and thinking skills. This was followed up by an online session. We then delivered four other online sessions concentrating on wellbeing and mental health. The modules were delivered in two parts and content included psychology models and theory in addition to our proven unique models and toolkits. These including wonky thinking and FLIP, unique to Laughology. During the mental health sessions, we helped delegates develop their own wellbeing first aid kits to facilitate early identification of potential issues.

We delivered the interactive webinars using Zoom and designed each to be fun and dynamic. We created quizzes, polls, tasks and breakout sessions to keep delegates engaged and entertained while they learned virtually. Delegates were also provided with links for further activities, resources and reading. After each session delegates were given a practical, relevant task to complete before the next session. During the webinars, delegates could interact using instant messaging, annotation and audio. Each webinar was attended by between 108 and 115 delegates.

The results:

Feedback from graduates attending the course

Post-session surveys showed that delegates found the workshops useful, engaging and provided them with skills and confidence to enhance their roles.

“I really enjoyed all sessions and though I was not at first expecting them to be so much value-adding, they were very beneficial and made me rethink at least in few definite ways (e.g. this was one reason why I was encouraged to hold a virtual meetups with other members of my team) Also I put in some extra effort into interacting with colleagues I did not talk directly to before.”

“It was a great last session with you! I barely noticed that our hour-long session went over time. You shared some great ideas and techniques that we can carry forward (the 3Ss for mental health prevention example) and how to use them further.”

More Laughology Case Studies

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  • BNP Paribas

    BNP Paribas Case Study

    Laughology worked with BNP Paribas to develop a programme which taught the art of effective communication to participants on the bank’s fast-track management scheme

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  • Severn Trent Water

    Severn Trent Water

    Laughology devised a series of bespoke, immersive sessions with managers which helped them gain a greater understanding of resilience and increased emotional capital and engagement throughout the team.

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  • O2

    O2 Case Study

    Telecoms provider O2 wanted to create a leadership-led culture where people could have ‘great conversations that matter, making every day better through personal experiences that count’.

    Read more

  • Trafford Housing Trust

    Trafford Case Study

    Laughology was engaged at a time when the Trust was undergoing a transformation process and was attempting to save costs to invest more in its core mission.

    Read more

  • Fujitsu

    Fujitsu Case Study

    International tech firm Fujitsu runs a two-year graduate programme designed to develop skills for work and future leaders. The cohort from this programme is drawn from all over Europe.

    Read more

  • NWG Innovation Festival

    NWG Innovation Festival Case Study

    The Northumbrian Water Group Innovation Festival is unique, pioneering a five-day event focused on championing new ways of thinking to address real-world problems. Attendees work on sprints, or short practical sessions, to develop hacks and solutions to a range of challenges.

    Read more

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  • Created on .

Trafford Housing Trust case study

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TRAFFORD HOUSING TRUST

Laughology was engaged at a time when the Trust was undergoing a transformation process and was attempting to save costs to invest more in its core mission. It was intent on maximising processes, breaking mindset and helping new employees understand what its customer experience was. It wanted to make the shift from providing customer service to providing customer experience.

The challenge:

The solution:

Housing association THT is a housing provider which delivers a wrap-around social housing service. It develops and sells high-end housing to fund its core social housing mission. It builds social housing, houses tenants and supports them. It faces a complex range of challenges, including a shortage of stock, a large waiting list, Universal Credit issues and tenants with complex needs. It has a large customer base who have a wide range of different needs.
We worked with the organisation to deliver modules one and two of our customer experience programme. We arranged customer focus groups consisting of customers at different parts of the customer journey with different needs. Using insights gained from these we built an in-depth profile of the THT customer experience. This allowed the organisation to understand its customers. We identified areas of challenge and recommended workshops and training to help. These included unconscious bias and mental health first aid.

The results:

Why did it work so well?

Behaviours were implemented, tools and techniques helped teams shift mindset. Mixed groups in workshops allowed for a more holistic understanding within the organisation. Staff developed a better understanding of the customer. The Trust saw a reduction in the number of complaints and an increase in cross-functional service.
We worked with customers from the start who shared their stories; good and bad. The organisation was honest, which created trust between front line workers and managers. Recommendations were actioned by the senior leadership team.

More Laughology Case Studies

  • Nat West

    Case study

    We devised a bespoke programme of sessions designed to build participants’ emotional intelligence, using humour as a leadership mind-set.

    Read more

  • HSBC

    HSBC Case Study

    HSBC wanted Laughology to complement its highly successful training and development programme with an engaging, science-based module addressing the subject of unconscious bias.

    Read more

  • BNP Paribas

    BNP Paribas Case Study

    Laughology worked with BNP Paribas to develop a programme which taught the art of effective communication to participants on the bank’s fast-track management scheme

    Read more

  • Severn Trent Water

    Severn Trent Water

    Laughology devised a series of bespoke, immersive sessions with managers which helped them gain a greater understanding of resilience and increased emotional capital and engagement throughout the team.

    Read more

  • O2

    O2 Case Study

    Telecoms provider O2 wanted to create a leadership-led culture where people could have ‘great conversations that matter, making every day better through personal experiences that count’.

    Read more

  • Trafford Housing Trust

    Trafford Case Study

    Laughology was engaged at a time when the Trust was undergoing a transformation process and was attempting to save costs to invest more in its core mission.

    Read more

  • Fujitsu

    Fujitsu Case Study

    International tech firm Fujitsu runs a two-year graduate programme designed to develop skills for work and future leaders. The cohort from this programme is drawn from all over Europe.

    Read more

  • NWG Innovation Festival

    NWG Innovation Festival Case Study

    The Northumbrian Water Group Innovation Festival is unique, pioneering a five-day event focused on championing new ways of thinking to address real-world problems. Attendees work on sprints, or short practical sessions, to develop hacks and solutions to a range of challenges.

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  • Created on .

O2 coaching programme case study

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O2 COACHING PROGRAMME

Telecoms provider O2 wanted to create a leadership-led culture where people could have ‘great conversations that matter, making every day better through personal experiences that count’. Laughology was engaged to design, implement and embed an effective coaching programme that was flexible, engaging and different.
Launching Big Chats - Little Chats coaching programme at O2 HQ

The challenge:

Our preliminary research and surveys highlighted a sceptical view of traditional coaching models within the organisation. What was needed was a radical rethink of what coaching was, what it should aim to achieve and how it should be delivered. Old coaching models were outdated and unengaging.

O2 believed that every conversation was an opportunity to transform thinking and to drive change. Their 2017 engagement outputs were clear in indicating that people wanted more conversation with their leaders throughout the year. The goals for the programme were:

  • Build coaching mind-sets and improve capability across leadership teams by promoting behavioural change
  • Create leader’s mind-set focused on enabling capabilities of others
  • Create organisation-wide energy, agility, resilience and optimism
  • Increase levels of personal accountability and empowerment, leading to an uplift in individual and collective performance

What we did:

Laughology set about developing our coaching programme for the 21st century, which we call Big Chats, Little Chats (BC,LC). We started by identifying the weaknesses in traditional coaching models, which are generally outdated and fail to address modern working patterns, including remote teams.

Traditionally, when managers coach, they are sent on a course to learn how, and then deliver coaching in rigid, informal chunks, usually booked in diaries days or even weeks in advance. Life doesn’t work this way.

We believed that coaching should fundamentally be an ongoing, fluid process, the success of which is dependent on how managers interact with their people. We recognised that great coaching should be delivered as a continuum, not incrementally.

Using this philosophy, we developed a model to define the type of chats managers should be having with their teams. The goal was to develop a programme where conversations were personalised, anyhow/anywhere, on demand and future focussed (which we denote using the handy acronym, PA-OFF).

With BC,LC, we set about creating an environment and culture where managers would be constantly connected and could develop and nurture their teams on a day-to-day basis. It was important that the programme did not take a prescriptive approach. Managers and leaders needed to be agile and flexible. This works better in the connected world we now live and work in.

PA-OFF was the coaching delivery style. The next challenge was to create the right content to allow O2 to achieve its strategic goals.

We developed three modules:

  • Creating the right environment

    Addressing communication to allow individuals the space to think and problem-solve, thereby developing independence, confidence and competency. The module addresses language, frame-of-mind and questioning techniques. It shows how to develop the right conditions in which to encourage open and honest conversations

  • Growth mindset

    Recognising and challenging fixed mindset to create growth mindset culture within teams. The module guides people through the learning pit to develop growth in others. It gives practical advice on praising the right way and rewarding effort rather than outcome. It is designed to allow people to develop a culture of self-directed learning while improving individual capability and agile working.

  • FLIP It thinking

    Laughology’s unique tool draws on elements of psychology and neuroscience to build resilience, optimism, wellbeing and future focus.

With the programme designed, we needed a delivery style and system suited to the size and unique set-up of O2; a large organisation with 6000 employees across a range of sites and directorates. We developed a multi-faceted, multi-media, blended-learning, creative approach.

To begin with, we set up early adopter groups to test and appraise the content. Their feedback was used to refine and enhance the content which was tested again before going live.

Laughology produced a series of learning shorts in association with O2. These were two to four-minute training films detailing how, when and why to use the techniques and content. The videos were original and scripted using real-life examples from within O2. They were produced in Laughology’s unique humour style, but branded to align with O2 tone of voice and land with the O2 audience. To create buy-in, familiarity, excitement and engagement we auditioned and used O2 leaders and team members. The films were posted on O2’s learning platform, O2 Campus. Previews and out-takes were also posted.

Cheat sheets were produced to accompany learning shorts. These followed the O2 branding and tone of voice and were accessible online. They were also mobile-friendly.  Each cheat sheet had theory, practical techniques and hints and tips.

Workplace (facebook’s workplace platform) was used to share ideas and new content and to release learning shorts. It was also used to set up and trial O2’s first virtual classroom on which we gave interactive webinars, which combined live-streamed presentations with real-time feedback through live chat. Techniques were shared and queries responded to. A workplace community was developed in which people shared successes and techniques. It encouraged engagement and was used to create anticipation before each new element was rolled out. 

On the ground we developed a network of Chatterboxes and Chief Chatterboxes who were internal O2 staff trained to be BC,LC champions. They had variety of roles at different levels. They supported leaders to roll out the programme, supervised, mentored and fed back to Laughology and O2 senior learning consultants. They followed up after each new module was introduced and helped leaders with new techniques.  

The BC,LC initiative was given a showcase launch by Mark Evans, O2’s CEO, at O2’s HQ. It was beamed via live-stream on Workplace. The launch introduced BC,LC and shared helpful activities and techniques. Head of HR, Ann Pickering, introduced the programme, head of retail, Ian Abrinol, highlighted successes from the retail pilot, including an increase in footfall, engagement and customer satisfaction scores. Over 200 people attended, over 1,800 watching virtually, the largest engagement O2 had ever seen.

Each module also had a mini-launch using O2’s Campus Live, which is a monthly 30-minute live interview streamed on the learning platform and Workplace.

Content was included at O2’s WLT events and SLT and board get-togethers.

The results:

23 percent uplift in sales for store managers who had been through the programme.

Leaders who had been through the programme scored >95 in the Engagement Index in the Employee Engagement Survey. All these leaders had taken part in early adopter sessions.  Other high scoring leaders had taken part in the programme and received positive feedback. Qualitative data from teams showed a direct impact from BC,LC. 

Examples of feedback around BC,LC themes:

  • Treats me individually:
  • Allows freedom to make my own decisions:
  • Feel empowered and trusted:
  • Adapts to different personalities:
  • Arranges to see me face-to-face when I need it:
  • Always has our backs:
  • Gives me time and listens fully:
  • Creates the right environment:
  • Is always available:
  • Listens to -everything I have to say:
  • We often talk about my family and out-of-work activities and interests:
  • Chats are future focused about my development:
  • We talk about me, how I feel and my general wellbeing
  • Stores reported that with the support of Champions and Laughology 750 leaders were successfully using BC,LC to develop and coach around 2,000 advisors across 450 company-owned and franchise stores.

Due to this retail achieved a positive uplift in 6 out of 7 KPI measures, including footfall, team engagement and profits. “The change in focus from results to performance has been fantastic to see” Keith Wood, Retail Learning Partner 

Content performed above expectations, showing a positive engagement in the progamme.

50 of the highest line management engagement scores showed BC,LC behaviours present and consistent.

Other high-scoring leaders above 75 percent had taken part in the programme and received positive feedback.

Programme engagement

Introduction to Big Chats, little chats 1466 (all time views)

751 (all time unique views)

Creating the right environment 942 (all time views)

457 (all time unique views)

Growth mindset 889 (all time views)

466 (all time unique views)

FLIP it thinking 814 (all time views)

426 (all time unique views)

Workplace live stream and virtual classrooms

BC,LC launch live stream 1400 views
BC,LC Campus live 632 views
BC,LC Growth mindset virtual classroom 779 views
BC,LC FLIP virtual classroom 400 views

Why it worked so well:

The programme was developed in partnership with O2. Although BC,LC content was already designed by Laughology we tweaked it to make sure it worked in the O2 culture and spent time redesigning content and tone of voice to fit. We looked at what already worked online within the company and what didn’t. Pre-launch  focus groups allowed us insights into the company culture and the organisation’s views on coaching. As we developed content and ideas, we piloted elements, so we knew what worked and what didn’t.

Laughology worked in close partnership with O2’s L&D, HR and online learning partners to understand the company culture and mindset and how best to roll out the programme. The process was approached as a long-term investment, rather than a series of sessions and workshops. Indeed, it’s still being rolled out across the organisation. There was buy-in from the top down, from the CEO to the champions, which ensured BC,LC was embedded at all levels. Senior leaders and execs used BC,LC language in their comms. Communications between Laughology and O2 were sustained throughout.

The module-by-module roll-out of BC,LC over time, sustained engagement and interest and ensured that there was always news and current content for people to engage with.

BC,LC was aligned to the business and was used to target strategic goals within directorates. For example, in retail it could be rolled out in underperforming territories to raise performance. Rather than just being a workshop or another learning and development programme, we analysed what was important within directorates and linked champions to those directorate to help drive the specific goals. It could used as a tool for hitting targets.

The champions network provided on-the-ground support to managers and continually drive the initiative, linking it to business and strategic goals.

Learn more about the Big Chats - Little Chats coaching programme

Go to programme page...

More Laughology Case Studies

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  • Created on .

NatWest

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NatWest

When you are one of the nation’s biggest banks employing some of the world’s best talent, you need to look at training and development in a fresh and innovative way. Which is why Nat West chose Laughology as a partner.

The challenge:

Nat West employs some of the most high-achieving individuals in the global banking sector. The company is serious about training and retaining its star players.

Its career development programme is one of the best in the business and it wanted to keep it fresh with new, relevant, effective and inventive elements.

The solution:

Nat West invited several training and development companies to tender for the opportunity to enhance its already successful internal training and talent retention programme. The bank was specifically looking for a partner to deliver confidence-building and motivation techniques in an effective and unique way.

We devised a bespoke programme of sessions designed to build participants’ emotional intelligence, using humour as a leadership mind-set.

We recognise that people learn more effectively in an emotive state. They are more likely to retain information, remember it and recall it if the learning experience is positive.

This theory is backed by rigorous scientific evidence and we used this knowledge in the programme we developed. We employed techniques of stand-up comedy and improvisation to engage participants and help them enhance confidence and presentation skills. The programme was delivered in a series of sessions over a two-year period.

 

The results:

There was a higher rate of promotion within the group which undertook the training, along with a higher rate of staff who made lateral movements within the organisation, rather than leave it.

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    O2 Case Study

    Telecoms provider O2 wanted to create a leadership-led culture where people could have ‘great conversations that matter, making every day better through personal experiences that count’.

    Read more

  • Trafford

    Trafford Case Study

    Laughology was engaged at a time when the Trust was undergoing a transformation process and was attempting to save costs to invest more in its core mission.

    Read more

  • Fujitsu

    Fujitsu Case Study

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    NWG Innovation Festival Case Study

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  • Created on .

Severn Trent Water

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SEVERN TRENT WATER

As part of its ongoing commitment to developservices, Severn Trent Water undertook a customer service department restructure to enhance customer experience. 

The challenge:

A newly-formed customer services management team within Severn Trent Water comprised leaders with a range of experience in different areas of the utility. They all shared the same goals; to increase net promotor scores and customer satisfaction whilst effectively managing the large teams under their charge.

As a new team, cohesion and alignment were key factors in realising these objectives, as were leadership skills, resilience and big-picture thinking.

The solution:

Laughology devised a series of bespoke, immersive sessions with managers which helped them gain a greater understanding of resilience and increased emotional capital and engagement throughout the team.  Our management and leadership modules were combined with individual coaching session to accelerate learning.

The sessions encouraged fresh thinking and interaction. Participants built bonds and developed a wider understanding of various roles and how they affect customer experience. Working together, they developed the core skills needed to effectively lead their teams and so enhance the company’s customer service proposition.

Laughology then worked with the team to develop an interactive show-case event during which they presented their vision to the wider workforce.  Using the skills they had acquired during the process the managers developed new lines of communication and encouraged feedback from all areas of the business which was used to develop further strategy. 

The results:

As a result of Laughology’s programme participants were able to deliver a new programme to the rest of the customer service department.

Severn Trent Water’s net promoting scores improved. The process contributed to customer satisfaction levels of 4.36 out of five, engagement levels increased as did positive relationships with management.  

More Laughology Case Studies

  • Nat West

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    We devised a bespoke programme of sessions designed to build participants’ emotional intelligence, using humour as a leadership mind-set.

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    O2 Case Study

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    Trafford Case Study

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    Fujitsu Case Study

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    Read more

  • NWG Innovation Festival

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  • Created on .

HSBC

BNP Paribas logo

HSBC

HSBC wanted and complement its highly successful training and development programme with an engaging, science-based module addressing the subject of unconscious bias.

The challenge:

HSBC’s Balance programme helped promote awareness and understanding of the benefits of balanced workplaces.

The bank wanted to make participation within this programme as diverse as possible and required a series of entertaining and informative keynote talks to attract participants and stimulate conversations around the subject of unconscious bias.

The solution:

At Laughology, we make the complex simple and fun. Our unique delivery style ensures maximum attention, engagement and retention. Which is why HSBC chose us as the perfect partner to complement and enhance their global diversity programme.

Initially, we consulted with the lead team in the programme and analysed existing provision to gain understandingof where leaders and participants felt there were gaps.
Armed with this data we developed a series of bespoke, sector-specific sessions which concentrated on the psychology and neuro-science of unconscious bias. The sessions drew heavily on current scientific research. The aim was to create deeper awareness of the social and behavioural reasons behind the causes of bias.

A series of six sessions were delivered at HSBC’s London headquarters and after each, evaluation and feedback was used to enhance subsequent sessions. Each was delivered in an enjoyable format with tangible deliverables and quick wins, such as strategies for thinking differently and recognising situations where bias could affect decisions.

The results:

Nearly 90 percent of attendees reported the experience as very good or excellent with 87 percent reporting that the subject matter was well evidenced and relevant to their work. This created an increase in reported general conversations about bias and its effects.

After the second event the reports were so positive the bank decided to live webcast subsequent presentations so anyone within the organisation could participate and benefit.


More Laughology Case Studies

  • Nat West

    Case study

    We devised a bespoke programme of sessions designed to build participants’ emotional intelligence, using humour as a leadership mind-set.

    Read more

  • HSBC

    HSBC Case Study

    HSBC wanted Laughology to complement its highly successful training and development programme with an engaging, science-based module addressing the subject of unconscious bias.

    Read more

  • BNP Paribas

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  • Severn Trent Water

    Severn Trent Water

    Laughology devised a series of bespoke, immersive sessions with managers which helped them gain a greater understanding of resilience and increased emotional capital and engagement throughout the team.

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  • O2

    O2 Case Study

    Telecoms provider O2 wanted to create a leadership-led culture where people could have ‘great conversations that matter, making every day better through personal experiences that count’.

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  • Trafford

    Trafford Case Study

    Laughology was engaged at a time when the Trust was undergoing a transformation process and was attempting to save costs to invest more in its core mission.

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  • Fujitsu

    Fujitsu Case Study

    International tech firm Fujitsu runs a two-year graduate programme designed to develop skills for work and future leaders. The cohort from this programme is drawn from all over Europe.

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  • NWG Innovation Festival

    NWG Innovation Festival Case Study

    The Northumbrian Water Group Innovation Festival is unique, pioneering a five-day event focused on championing new ways of thinking to address real-world problems. Attendees work on sprints, or short practical sessions, to develop hacks and solutions to a range of challenges.

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