An organisation committed to redefining attitudes towards ageing in the UK, and empowering people to live their whole lives well.
When Brendoncare’s new CEO arrived, they found an organisation that was lacking direction, vision, and purpose. All working tirelessly, diligently, without moving forward.
With over 750 employees and hundreds of volunteers spread across more than a dozen sites and communities, the people of Brendoncare struggled to connect with one another - let alone with the organisation’s larger mission.
Brendoncare is full of brilliant, kind & passionate people - but they weren’t working effectively together, unified by a larger vision or moving towards a happier future.
Getting under the skin of Brendoncare:
To understand if the CEO’s impressions signalled Brendoncare’s reality, we started listening at all levels of the organisation, conducting:
Interviews with Senior Leadership Team, volunteers, trustees, home managers, deputies, and front-line staff
On-site visits to/consultations with each of Brendoncare’s homes
A survey of 800+ people within Brendoncare, focusing on sentiment analysis and individuals’ understanding of their place and impact in the organisation
Mission, Purpose, and Vision workshops with Senior Leadership, Home Managers, and Trustees - to clarify what Brendoncare wanted to be doing, and to help them understand what their current working models were achieving
Through this work, we helped Brendoncare’s Senior Leadership Team confirm and articulate the challenges they faced. Over many years, and especially through the pandemic, Brendoncare had become fractured: they were no longer communicating across the organisation, and they needed to find a way of bringing their community back together with a renewed sense of purpose.
Big picture thinking:
For Brendoncare, we’ve gone back to the foundations, helping Senior Leadership to see where they stand - both in the sector, and with their employees and volunteers. Focusing initially on revitalising the organisation’s Internal Comms strategy, their Cohesion Labs support framework has included:
A document for Senior Leadership that outlines sector-wide challenges, as well as Brendoncare’s current, and possible future position
Vision, purpose, and values
A comprehensive vision for the organisation’s future, a collaborative effort with Brendoncare's staff and leadership
Internal comms report
A comprehensive report of lived experience of Brendoncare employees, demonstrating the scale and significance of the organisation’s internal comms challenge
Internal comms audit
Profiles of the challenges in each individual home
Examples of best and worst practice
A comprehensive strategy for positive change, with recommendations for new hires, space renovations, software upgrades (including research into preferred options), and guidance on tone, messaging, and process
Recommendations on tools, platforms, channel strategy and more
Supporting improved internal communications, including:
LookingForward2022, a magazine distributed to all staff, that shared the year’s triumphs, new investments in staff, and organisation-wide developments
The ‘Scale of Care’: a wall-filling map of the journey through Brendoncare’s services (for residents, members, staff and volunteers), outlining the full range of Brendoncare’s activities, and how individuals contribute to Brendoncare’s purpose
Roller banners and internal posters communicating a new tone and improved focus on staff well-being
Building keynote presentations and speech writing for Senior Leadership, to assist in securing buy-in from front-line staff and trustees
We started with working with Cohesion Labs to help us understand where we were, and where we wanted to get to. Our organisation had been treading water, and the pandemic had hit all of our staff as well as our sector, hard. Morale was low, and we wanted to see a route forward.
As we'd not undertaken this kind of work before we didn't really know what we were getting ourselves in to but the team has taken us with us at every stage, keeping us informed, and taking a thorough look at our organisation at every level.
After continued engagement with our community, we now have a purpose, vision and values that we can work towards implementing in a genuine, thorough and commercially relevant way for our staff, residents and broader community alike. We also have a huge amount of data to review, behaviours to understand and a list of well signposted recommendations to roll out over the coming months.
We now have a plan, a route forward with clearly defined methods, practices and frameworks to measure it all on, we would not have this without the thorough approach Cohesion Labs gave us.
What has struck everyone here about our partnership is that with each brief and project we work on; the creativity, the vision, and the detail comes back brilliantly - whether it's a highly involved and detailed Internal Comms Audit, or concepts for our annual conference. Every output has delivered more either in value, or in insight than we expected.
While it has not been an easy journey for us, I would recommend anyone who wants to see positive change in their organisation to start here.
Head of Brand & Customer Experience at Brendoncare
Brendoncare continues to build a community that engages through a refreshed look and feel of the brand and a tuned up communications strategy that pulls everyone throughout their organisation, together.
Since completing this part of our work, Brendoncare has:
Launched their new vision, purpose and values
Appointed an Internal Communications Manager to drive this critical part of the organisation forward
Launched comms tool, Blink to the staff cohort
Began the process of upgrading IT infrastructure
Created the Brendoncare word book, to shine a light on positive language to use within the homes and communities