Case Study - Daniel's Story

Despite setback learn how he achieved his leadership goal

Daniel had worked for the organisation for about three years. He had good working relationships with his team and managers across the site. He had been promoted quite rapidly, including covering for Team Managers on the Team Manager Development Programme. Recently, he had applied for a permanent Team Manager role but had been unsuccessful. This had impacted his confidence and self-esteem. As a result, his pride had been dented, and he was feeling very undervalued.  

Daniel was on my team, and my opinion of him hadn’t changed, so being on the Ignite team was a test of his emotional resilience. He was holding on to a lot of anger, which fuelled his negative behaviour. I decided to recommend that he joined the Ignite team. When he discovered this, Daniel was very confused. Why was he joining this team? After all, wasn’t this the team for underperformers, those with a bad attitude or who clearly didn’t want to be there?  

Although Daniel didn’t realise it, there was method in my madness, but first, I needed to convince him that this was the best move for him. I made him aware that he would be working alongside experienced employees, and this should free him from having to constantly answer questions from his existing team allowing him time for his own personal development. Daniel reluctantly joined the team but suddenly found himself enjoying the whole experience within days. I heard him laughing and joking with the team. When I asked him how he was feeling, he said, “I haven’t worked with these people for such a long time, and it’s really good to be around them again”. He acknowledged that it was nice not to have questions fired at him constantly and that it was good to have adult conversations with like-minded people.  

It wasn’t long before I saw Daniel’s competitive edge start to come to the surface. I had always known that competition was one of Daniel’s motivators, and now I saw it in action. He was soon seeking recognition for being the top performer in the team. Daniel started to demonstrate his natural leadership capabilities by sharing tips with the team and making sure everyone was equipped to deal with their own personal challenges. Daniel responded to all the challenges that were set, and he completed all the learning and development tools.  

By reading the book Who Moved My cheese? when he came into the Ignite Programme, Daniel was able to identify the character with whom he was most closely aligned – though he was a different character when he left! At the end of the Ignite Programme, Daniel knew what his strengths were as well as his weaknesses, and he had started to explore many opportunities available to him. He decided that if he couldn’t secure a Team Manager opportunity within the organisation he would secure one outside! He did just that but because he was engaged within the organisation he decided not to take the manager opportunity. He has stayed with the business, and I was delighted because I knew he would one day secure a management position within the company.  

What Daniel is doing 18 months later  

Since the end of the 12-week programme, Daniel has secured a permanent Team Managers role within the organisation. He has a high-performing team and continues to grow within his role. He uses all that he learnt from his Ignite experience with his existing team and continues to go from strength to strength. 

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