The Magenta Quest (Episode 3)

“Every success story is a tale of constant adaption, revision and change.”

—Richard Branson, the Virgin Group

The Adventure Continues 

One month ago, Fiona Astor, our trepid Transformation Director at Magenta Living presented the second chapter on The Magenta Quest sharing their main challenges and successes during their epic transformational journey. This time, she came back for more, with the third instalment of our ongoing story.

Fiona was also joined by the organisational development team from Magenta Living. Rob Mealor and Richard Harbridge, the team behind their Rising Stars Program were invited to share their insight on this successful project. Finally, we had Peter Gavin testimony, highlighting the benefits of this program.

Ready to listen to these charming chronicles?

Some of the attendees and participants from Magenta’s third episode.

Setting the Scene: Customer Engagement

One key initiative of the Magenta Way is to develop a Customer Engagement strategy. Here they have embarked on through a collaborative Customer Experience Project in partnership with the Golden Marzipan Group.

According to Fiona, and through the use of Golden Marzipans rapid process/strategy sprints, they have been discovering “what customer experience will look like in the future” at Magenta.

Through different empowering workshops, the GM Group has provided a supportive framework with a wide range of technology (such as Teams and Mural) helping out to engage colleagues in an ongoing conversation. As Fiona certifies, they “have identified the priorities, the challenges, and we have voted and collaborated, receiving some great feedback”. More importantly, giving us alignment and structure to help us resolve and develop our strategy.

Too Many Projects.

If “the essence of strategy is choosing what not to do,” as Michael Porter famously wrote, then the essence of execution is truly not doing it.

That may sound simple, but most organisations struggle to kill initiatives, even those that no longer support their strategy. Unaware of the cumulative impact or unwilling to part with pet projects or both, senior leaders pile on more and more, expecting teams to absorb it all. Productivity, engagement, performance, and retention tend to suffer as a result.

Fiona has recognised this and begun a step-by-step process of the Magenta Way which entails

  1. Getting a true count of the current initiatives across the organisation.
  2. Assessing each one, identifying the business need, the required budget, the headcount allocation, and the business impact.
  3. Getting the senior leadership team working together to establish priorities, in a discussion-driven by the top leadership team and informed by candid feedback from below.
  4. Establish a “sunset” clause for each initiative.
  5. Strongly communicate that stopping an initiative isn’t a sign of failure.

She said that although “there is a lot of changes going on, sometimes you don’t necessarily quantify it”. To support this consistently, all priorities have been mapped on paper so progress can be visualised, showcasing how everything is linked together or not.

This is the part of the change initiative portfolio toolkit and to help identify the implications to Magenta.

Magenta Behaviours

Behaviours in terms of job performance at Magenta can be summarised as seven capital values.

  1. Mutual Respect.
  2. All About Simplicity
  3. Getting Know You
  4. Empowerment
  5. No Blame
  6. Teamwork
  7. Always Improving

Magenta’s values from Fiona’s presentation

The Rising Stars Program

Rob also added that they “knew they had talent in the organisation and they wanted to have an identifiable program for people to aligned to”. He continued saying that they rebranded their previous ‘Aspiring Managers Program’. and launched their new program. According to Rob, they wanted to deliver a “strong message about more inclusive, transparent development routes with fewer barriers“.

A real success, the organisation development team have made developed a platform that invests in career development. For the last three months, Richard –the administrator of the  Rising Stars Program– has worked collaboratively with the Senior and Executive Leadership team arranging a soon-to-be Mentor Program. Involvement, interest and engaging coaching are ever-present.

What is a Rising Star?

From the many people who applied, Peter Gavin’s stood out as a candidature facing adversity with commitment and ambition. After thirteen years at Magenta, Peter– from the Building Services department– saw this opportunity as a platform to embrace change in a positive manner.

In Peter’s own words, “this was my chance to seize the moment and grasp it with both hands”. “I knew this was a golden opportunity not to be missed to enhance my career through the platform”, he shared. Also, he confirmed, “my short-term goal is to advance through the program utilising all the resources given and to maximise my full potential“. Finally, and according to Peter, his long-term goal “is to become a Managing Director”.

Go Big or Go Home

Ambition. Integrity. Pride. Enthusiasm. These are all essential components of a successful digital transformation process. To generate new value, we need to unlock different opportunities to create growth and meaning. As Peter eloquently put it, “you need to think big…or go home”.

Do you want more? 

If you are interested in the Magenta Quest, then check out our link below featuring “The Magenta Quest (Episode 1)”  blog post.

The Magenta Quest (Episode 1)

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If you would like to discuss any of the items raised in this blog then please contact

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