BAE Systems F-35 Sustainment brought in the Contribution Curve to bring managers up from reacting to leading. Our aim was to free up the leads and increase motivation and ownership at the professional layers of the company and to move away from the more traditional managing roles that come from an organisation that has a military legacy and many ex-officers at the helm. 

Unlike many training courses that last a couple of days and walk away, the Contribution Curve growth was followed by a series of 1 to 1 coaching sessions with a qualified coach.  I was lucky to have Ned and we quickly built a good coaching relationship, primarily down to the easy approach Ned took as we went through each session. I was not sure how these coaching sessions would pan out – what would the inputs and key outcomes be? However, it was quickly apparent that the coaching sessions were tailored to my perception of where I managed on the Contribution Curve.

Ned was quick to pick up on focus areas and ended each session with some challenges to be thought about or acted upon prior to the next session. Each session started with a recap of those actions, many of

which stretched me as I developed and Ned provided me with ideas for good visual aids to help me in tough situations where I may normally revert down the Contribution Curve. For example, what my vision was for my organisation; to focus on that helped me to see where my team needed to be.

During the year that we were engaged with Ned and his organisation, there was a series of other workshops based on the needs of the business.  Out of all these I found the coaching workshop to be hugely beneficial and feel that had that been an early workshop rather than a later one (my businesses decision) then that would have been a powerful early tool for moving along the Contribution Curve.

Since, the workshops, like most businesses, there have been challenges and changes that could have potentially set me back, but keeping a focus on the vision, driving positive coaching conversations and keeping in mind the measures that Ned and I discussed has been really useful and helped me drive toward some goals that have now been achieved.

Jackie Donnelly
F-35 Sustainment Integration Lead BAE Systems plc

I found Ned to be extremely helpful over my 9-month journey to identify, develop and implement the skills that I needed to effectively manage my time – including work-life balance – and put in place the skills I had learned from the programme. This enabled me to establish a better and more effective working relationship with my team, which has resulted in improved output. I found Ned’s personal contribution to be insightful; working alongside me to help me find the solutions to my development needs. Specifically, I feel that this approach has given me the tools I need to understand and trust my judgement. Many thanks for your support.

Rory Lancaster
Commercial Manager BAE Systems Submarines

‘Ian has provided clear and thoughtful training and coaching, supported by effective listening and a clear understanding of our requirements, and backed up with thought-provoking insights grounded in real-world experience. This has significantly improved how I look at leading teams and where improvements can be made, influencing my development and how I manage myself and lead others. The techniques provided have also given me capability to continue to improve and develop myself.

Paul Goodman
MAI Transformation Project Manager BAE Systems (Operations) Limited

Through our sessions Ian was able to develop my management style using a pragmatic, encouraging approach which helped to define and underline my personal values, emotions and attitudes.  I particularly enjoyed the reflective elements of Ian’s coaching;  I felt he was able to identify and unlock ideas which were already within me, helping me join the dots within my thinking and enable me to generate my own solutions to issues without ever having to give me the answer directly.  I lost track of the number of ‘penny drop’ moments during our one to one coaching sessions where the answer was staring me in the face and with some simple rationalisation Ian was able to bring this to the fore.

If you are looking to improve as a person and a manager I can highly recommend Ian and his style of coaching.  I feel I have added a number of techniques and simple tools to my armoury which will help me to be a success in both my future career and life.

Phil Horn
Executive Manager, BAE Systems

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