Twenty seven FUCHS Lubricants South Africa (FLSA) managers and supervisors have graduated on a GIBS leadership development programme that included topics such as working under pressure and employee relationships.
Annelia Tshabalala, Human Resources Manager at FUCHS Lubricants SA, explained: “We embarked on the programme to develop our supervisors’ and managers’ leadership abilities as part of a drive to grow the company to become a high performance organisation.
GIBS created the custom-designed Leadership Development Programme (LDP) which includes FUCHS’ leadership principles focusing on developing mindset and behavioural shifts in four areas: Attitude, Competency, Culture and Internal Environmental Factors.
To achieve this, GIBS designed a blended learning experience comprising leadership simulations that included the Discovery Healthy Food Studio, thought leadership masterclasses, group interactions, personal reflections and an action learning project.
David Patricios, Associate Director, Learning Solutions, GIBS, explained: “The subsequent follow up leadership simulation at the end of the programme saw the same FUCHS Lubricants managers demonstrate leadership competencies that had most certainly shifted as a result of their committed participation in the learning experience.”
“As part of the participation in the learning intervention, in syndicates, delegates were required to complete Action Learning Projects. This required delegates to complete operationally-orientated specific research projects under the guidance of a GIBS Action Learning coach.”
“Action Learning is the process of learning by reflection and active application, in this case on FLSA-specific challenges and opportunities. The learnings achieved through the FLSA Leadership Development Programme were evident at both personal and organisational levels.”
“During the presentations of their Action Learning Projects, delegates spoke confidently of the shifts at personal levels, enabling them to add noticeably more value within FLSA from management and leadership perspectives,” Mr Patricios added.
“The Discovery Healthy Food Studio was a simulation for delegates to experience their own and other leadership styles. As a team, they were put under pressure to prepare an attractive and well-cooked meal within a specific period of time,” said Ms Tshabalala.
The professional chefs of the Healthy Food Studio began the day with a masterclass of how to cook a Tandoori chicken, a Moroccan rice dish and a healthy chocolate dessert. It was then over to the delegates to prepare a meal out of their mystery boxes that were provided. All teams were given the same main ingredients.
During the simulation, teams were faced with various disruptions that either slowed them down or forced them to make an alternative plan to achieve their goal. The disruptions ranged from swapping ingredients with another team to their completed dessert being stolen. Despite some tense moments resulting from these disruptions, the teams managed to recover and resort to an unplanned, plan B.
“This kitchen experience aimed to raise delegates’ awareness of their emotional intelligence; ability to lead and manage effective and efficient teams; communicate through having difficult conversations; and understand the importance of employee relations,” said Ms Tshabalala.
“The winning team presented the well-cooked and flavoursome chicken, potatoes and dessert – even though they had the most disruptions to contend with, and significant leadership lessons were learnt.”
“The GIBS programme complemented our philosophy to delegate responsibility to our employees. We place great emphasis on personal and professional competence. In this we include our employees in decision-making processes, to ask questions and listen. Our actions are honest, accountable and transparent, and we make success measurable,” Ms Tshabalala concluded.