City of Tampere

The steps to empowering leadership

City of Tampere created a multi-step programme for developing leadership. All the steps lead to empowering leadership.

Business impact:

  • Awareness of the objectives of the change process grew significantly in the organization
  • Management teams of different industries made the principles more concrete
  • Online tools and coaching for managers

A few years ago, the City of Tampere took the evaluation of the operational model and the personnel surveys, which suggested a need to reform the management and operational culture, seriously.

The management decided to take on the task requested by the personnel. The city understood that leadership cannot be developed with simple hocus pocus tricks in an organization that employs approximately 13,000 people. Therefore, Tampere wanted a versatile development programme where the purpose was to change the leadership culture throughout the organization.

The cultural change had many objectives. “When leadership is developed, the personnel’s satisfaction increases, competence improves, and the number of absences is reduced. We believe that such matters can also bring about more
positive economic effects and better customer experience”, says HRD Manager Jaana Villilä-Vakkilainen.

Everybody on board

The atmosphere at the workplace can be seen as a coin with two sides. Good leadership constitutes one side, and the actions of the rest of the personnel the other. Change can be achieved by developing attitudes, thinking, and behaviour of the entire work community. Everybody must take esponsibility for their own work and understand their role as a member of the community. The principles work together smootly. When management encourages the personnel to have an effect on matters and they do, at least the prerequisites for change are there.

Now we are utilizing the Tampere model, which includes various measures from management group training to recruiting. Talent Vectia played a key role starting from the construction of that model", — Jaana Villilä-Vakkilainen, HRD Manager, City of Tampere

Many paths in the same direction

Principles turn into actions only when the people involved share a common understanding and have the potential to implement the principles. That’s why Tampere’s management development plan includes a comprehensive selection of tools that promote the desired change.

The city promotes the strengthening of the coaching leadership culture with the aid of management forums for top management and management events. The City of Tampere has invested particularly strongly in making management groups successful in order to be able to introduce operational model reform and the management principles throughout the entire organization.

During the spring of 2017, the work of management groups of the service areas and service groups was facilitated on the basis of the objectives of the operational model reform.  At the individual level, the change and the development of individual leadership were expedited with the aid of self-assessment and manager assessment.

The management training programme will be carried out in 2018, and it is mandatory for all managers. This way it can be ensured that everybody has an equal opportunity to succeed in leadership in accordance with the selected principles.

Supervisory training is extremely important for the entire project, as, in the end, some 800 managers from Tampere will determine how well the new management models will be realized in practice. ‘We have informed the employees of what they can expect from leadership. That’s why it is important for the changes to truly be realized and visible in everyday operations’, states Villilä-Vakkilainen.