Building capabilities that count When it matters most


Case study Global Petrochemical

Leadership Development


A global petrochemical company, which is the 2nd largest producer of methanol in the world.


We were invited to build a bespoke, high-quality leadership development programme for a global industrial group with specific multi-cultural requirements. Whilst the target group was 400 leaders (from the CEO downwards), the programme also had to include ‘awareness’ interventions for the remaining 1,600 employees.


This organisation’s values lie at the core of its business, and therefore the approach was one of Values-based leadership. The aim was to transform the organisation by bringing the values to life through the use of agreed behaviours for leaders and followers. The purpose was to achieve behavioural change in order to improve leadership across the group through the delivery of a coherent, aligned and bespoke organisation-wide programme. It had to be an opportunity for everyone, underpinned by the logic that both leaders and their individual team members have obligations as both leaders and followers.

Our approach focused on:

Operator Leadership. Delivered by consultants, all of whom are experienced leaders, and reinforced by the client’s leaders (operators), who role-modelled the required behaviours.

Experiential Learning. Delivery maximised the benefits of experiential learning, combined with facilitated group discussions.

Professional Rigour and Academic Governance.  The organisation had no strategic HR or Learning Development specialist, with HR limited to administrative roles. This meant Berwicks provided the missing capabilities. A senior FCIPD consultant with a Masters in Adult Learning provided academic and HR rigour.

An agreed Lexicon of Terms. This ensured alignment and understanding of language across the organisation.

Alignment of Processes. Agreed and set ways of working to be introduced across the organisation.

Modules. The modules allowed a ‘dip in, dip out’ flexible approach to meet client needs.

Generic Content. The modules were generic across the business. From CEO to supervisor, all leaders received the same messages and tools.

Bespoke Delivery. The delivery of the modules was bespoke to the cultures, leadership situation and seniority levels of the participants.


The current results of the programme evaluation show that there has been significant cultural changes in leadership behaviours. Teams and individual followers, at all levels, are more empowered; they understand their obligations and have clear expectations of their leaders. Unacceptable behaviours have largely been eliminated and all leaders and followers feel the freedom to challenge poor behaviours whenever they see them.

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