Group L&D Manager at THB Group
We talked to Rosalino Walsh, Group Learning and Development Manager at THB Group, about how the London based re-insurance broker is refining its learning and development strategy to break down siloes and build a ‘one-team’ culture of collaboration, supporting diversity and inclusion across the business.
Like many sectors, the insurance industry is facing a huge transformation. Jobs are being challenged by technology, but at the same time, people and talent are becoming more important than ever so a shake-up of cultural norms is in process. THB needed to make a cultural shift using learning and development to empower employees’ personal development, while also addressing gaps in management skills, succession planning, and quality of stated personal objectives.
Most importantly, the company wanted to move away from traditional ‘tick box’ mandatory training required by regulators and its score card performance reviews, that weren’t that useful for the majority of the business.
We needed to make a cultural shift at THB and our learning and development strategy was one of the ways we could help ensure our employees were not just technically competent but also developed the so-called soft skills needed to make that change.”
THB aspired to move away from traditional appraisals to “90-day coaching sessions”, but knew that most performance management software only offered a traditional online annual appraisal approach. Clear Review’s technology was specifically bit to enable ongoing dialogue and feedback – delivered with and extremely simple and ‘clean’ user experience.
According to Rosalino, Clear Review was a great fit due to the simple user experience and also because the system provides clarity around both business and personal development objectives. It’s helping THB to identify what its people are actually doing in terms of personal development, where they are going, and what their aspirations are.
THB branded the Clear Review performance management system ‘THB Talk Time.’ Talk Time has quickly become their central people management platform used to support everything from employee onboarding and probation period management, learning and development, employee reviews and objective setting. Succession planning is currently being introduced via Clear Reviews Talent Snapshots functionality, this is now considering entire teams versus traditional key people approaches.
With growing use of Talk-Time, THB is beginning to see real benefits, and it’s been fully embraced with 1,200 developmental conversations logged in the system. Buy in from senior people — including the Chief Executive — has been positive, and metrics from the system are shared with the board every month. Statistics are also published via the company’s HR News online magazine, where Rosalino can use system generated numbers to congratulate departments on various achievements.
Visibility and data feel different. The system has become an integral part in creating greater openness, transparency and clarity around what people need to do. Individuals are being more demanding of their managers in a positive way. Most people are now sitting down with their managers every three months and talking about their development. We’re using it to recruit and retain talent too. I had a senior person in our business who had been approached by another company asking her to come and work for them. She said, ‘I told them no because of the learning and development I’m getting at THB. I’m not ready to go yet.’ That’s the holy grail.”