Align and coach the frontline through regular CEO live sessions

Align and coach the frontline through regular CEO live sessions

Airtel’s retail stores work with a field team distributed across hundreds of stores across 22 states in India. For a long time it posed three big challenges for the leadership:

  1. How to ensure everybody is aligned on the mission of the company
  2. How to equip everybody to prioritise the right things for higher impact every day, and
  3. How to make field employees feel connected and motivated

To complicate things further, the field teams are predominantly junior employees who need more coaching than experienced employees.

Airtel’s CEO of retail business decided to address these by opening a direct channel to the distributed frontline through Workplace. Their team created a large Pan India group of all ~10,000 people called ‘Life @ Retail’ and the CEO now uses this group to regularly go live to share the leadership’s perspectives with the frontline. Since they wanted the leadership to be approachable so decided to use informal settings for such interactions, e.g., sitting in office cafeteria with headphones and going live using just the mobile phone.

This has become a huge hit and thousands of store employees watch CEO’s live interactions on their mobile phones and give their feedback through comments and reactions to the post.

Benefits / Impact of Workplace

  • Direct connect of the CEO with store teams across the country
  • Alignment of thousands of geographically distributed store employees on what matters most at any time
  • Relevant, contextual, and highly credible coaching for frontline store employees direct from the CEO

How to do it in your organisation in three simple steps

  1. Create an ‘Open’, ‘Default’, and ‘Announcements’ type group which has everyone in it. Keep the posting permissions to ‘Admins only’ and give admin rights to all leaders and only the required team members [Resources here]
  2. Create a Workplace event for CEO live in this group in advance and initiate a poll to allow everyone to post their questions or vote on each other’s questions for the CEO. Get the CEO to go live at the scheduled time in this group using just their mobile phone.
  3. Invite feedback and comments from people on the live post to encourage a two-way dialogue. Respond to emerging themes from this dialogue so as to encourage sustained dialogue in future.

About Airtel

Bharti Airtel (“Airtel”) is a leading telecommunications services company with operations in 17 countries across South Asia and Africa. As on Mar 31, 2018, it was the largest mobile network operator in India and the third largest in the world and serves over 413 million subscribers across its operations.

Airtel’s retail business operates in 22 circles (geographies) in India through a network of owned and franchisee stores. More about Airtel here.

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