Co-operative Group

Part of Xinfu’s role is to get under the skin of our organisation and understand what makes us tick and what we’re trying to achieve. Anybody can do textbook ‘HR stuff’ and it won’t land in terms of the specific challenges that we have. As well as the many skills that Xinfu brings, they have a real commercial sense of what makes a particular organisation work.
— Richard Pennycook, CEO of Co-operative Group
 
 
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Story

We were employed by the Co-operative Group in 2014, after the company’s PR scandal and crisis in 2013. The chairman was named by the press the ‘Crystal Methodist’ and the Co-operative Group had ceased to be taken seriously as a successful company, by many people in the UK. Richard Pennycook, the then CEO, was appointed in 2014 and brought in Xinfu to create and deliver the change journey in partnership with the company.

 

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Solution

Through many CEO confidant 1:1 sessions, Executive Committee workshops offsite and running a Top 60 event for the Enterprise Leaders in the company, our ambition was to get everybody in the organisation bought into the new vision, excited about this vision and willing to deliver it, to transform the company.

The offsite was hugely effective in taking what had been a vision of perhaps six people, and communicating it to and actively involving  75 people in the company. All of them now share the vision that we wanted to achieve.

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Result

“The offsite was hugely effective in taking what had been a vision of perhaps six people, and communicating it to and actively involving  75 people in the company. All of them now share the vision that we wanted to achieve”, said Richard Pennycook, former CEO, Co-operative Group. “The change journey was accelerated through the sessions we ran with the company and it was made much more achievable by the strategic moves that Xinfu put in place with the larger team”.

By May 2016, together we re-launched the entire company with a pioneering, community-based model. where memberships to the Group increased to a rate in which the business recovered and grow at an exponential rate. We found memberships increased by 525,048 (27%) since September 2006 to a total of 2,456,009.

By October 2016, the company won Best Retailer of the Year and an outstanding achievement award and the company was entirely galvanised.

“If we hadn’t done it, we wouldn’t be in the position where we delivered a successful change journey”. Richard Pennycook.