Home' HR Monthly : November 2015 Contents 22
FEATURE: YOUTH ENGAGEMENT
TONY: We have always taught leadership skills, but that was
usually to our leaders. So we took the work we had done with
a human synergistics tool into the broader organisation.
We were a little sceptical about how it would resonate with
the restaurant staff, but when we applied it to our company
restaurants in NSW they loved it. We started to see people
performing a lot better because there was a realisation that they
just had to find their own potential. So we built it more deeply
into the organisation.
How else did you manage culture across the business?
TONY: You have to distil a culture that means people will get
out of bed every day and want to do the right thing because
they are going to get recognised for it and they’re going to feel
good. So we built in a lot of corporate social responsibility to
give the business a soul and a value structure for people to rally
around. We did a huge amount of work around community,
environment, fixing the nutritional quality of our food and, of
course, around people. Those initiatives provided an anchor
point for people to say, ‘Yes, I am proud to work for this
It is an enormous undertaking. Where did you begin?
ROB: I started with the CEO. Then you bite it off, bit by bit,
from there. You move across to the leadership team then
talk to senior management. As the discussion progresses you
include more of the organisation. You have to start from the
top and bring the leadership team on board as advocates for the
programs. Sometimes our desire to do good things drives us into
action before alignment. But if you haven’t got the organisation
coming along with you, the best program in the world will
probably not work.
How do you feel when you hear Gen Y described as ‘lazy’?
ROB: It makes me feel frustrated. I disagree with that premise. If
you look at all the rhetoric across the decades, there is always a
problem of some kind with the kids. But they provide incredible
energy to the organisation.
TONY: Every day I am blown away by the capability of our
young people. And we get something back from them. We call it
How do senior management make contact with younger staff?
ROB: If people are starting on our leadership team from outside
the organisation, they have to do six weeks in a restaurant and
get trained up to shift supervisor level. Then we have a program
called Pulse, where every year each person in the office spends
a day in a restaurant. It reminds us of why the restaurants are
important, and how we can support restaurant staff because
they are the ones who make our money.
Is clear career progression important?
TONY: Yes, and we have ramped this up a lot. Progression in the
stores has always been visible, but people haven’t necessarily
seen what happens beyond that. So we have done a lot of work
with our graduate leader program, covering a range of roles. We
also try to publish stories internally about success stories.
So has this initiative achieved success?
TONY: We have a long way to go, but we have made some really
big strides. We’re performing financially – we’re probably one
of the best performing business units in KFC worldwide. And
I think we are doing better than most of our competition here
in Australia. But I am most proud of the work we have done on
culture and people.
“EVERY DAY I AM BLOWN AWAY BY THE
CAPABILITY OF OUR YOUNG PEOPLE. AND WE
GET SOMETHING BACK FROM THEM. WE CALL
IT ‘REVERSE MENTORING’.”
TONY LOWINGS, CEO, KFC
Enhance your capability and career by enrolling in
the AHRI Practising Certification Program (APC).
An industry recognised, two year, part-time
postgraduate level program, the APC is designed to
equip HR professionals with globally benchmarked
HR capabilities essential for today’s practising
2016 ENROLMENTS NOW OPEN
ENROL TODAY: AHRI.COM.AU/EDUCATION
Be true to you
> To learn more, visit the website,
phone 03 9925 2260 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
RMIT’s new Human Resource Management program
is focused on enhancing and updating your knowledge
and skills to develop HR practice globally.
The program focuses on a diverse global workforce
and the application of HR practice within small
and medium enterprises, including start-ups and
entrepreneurial firms. Understand the complexities of
working with the public and not for profit sectors as
well as multinational corporations.
New Master of Human
CRICOS: 0122A RTO: 3046
Tony Lowings was the 2014 AHRI Lynda Gratton CEO Award winner;
Rob Phipps is a finalist for the 2015 Dave Ulrich HR Leader Award
15/10/2015 11:11 am
Links Archive October 2015 December 2015 Navigation Previous Page Next Page