Stories of Growth and Change

Our clients reach from established multinational corporations with a workforce in the thousands to fast-moving leaders in niche markets. What our clients have in common is a drive to stay ahead of the curve.

WDHB programs are highly customized and always closely co-developed with our clients. By empathizing deeply with participants we are able to become a quick-thinking and acting partner - someone to have honest and open conversations with.

Unpacking Potential

Amcor, a global leader in packaging, initiated the Accelerated Career Development Program to inject fresh and diverse talent into its leadership pipeline. The onboarding and annual collocations co-designed and organized by WDHB contributed to the success story of the ACDP, turning it into a forum for agenda-setting and knowledge exchange and providing the organization with a valuable network of corporate change agents.

amcor

Context & Challenge

With roots dating back to Victoria’s first paper mill established in 1860, Amcor has evolved over time from an Australian papermaker to a globally leading, diversified packaging manufacturer. Today, Amcor supplies many of the world’s best-known consumer and healthcare brands with highly specialized, safe and sustainable packaging solutions. On average, every 11th product you touch is produced by Amcor.

Amcor has set up an Accelerated Career Development Program (ACDP; accelerate.amcor.com) to prepare exceptional and diverse talent for a career within Amcor. A careful and highly competitive assessment process has led to several cohorts of 10 to 15 ACDPers who spend 4 years in the program on two exciting Sales or Marketing roles.

Collaboration with WDHB

For its first ACDP-cohort in 2015, Amcor selected WDHB to be the design and delivery partner for an onboarding session in Zurich. WDHB built a diverse program developing original formats for Amcor-specific materials, integrating relevant outside-in perspectives and providing platforms for community-building and reflection among the ACDP team.

The mix of internal contents, external keynotes and company exchanges, workshops, peer-to-peer coaching as well as individual and collective reflection was a perfect match to the group’s needs. The combination of WDHB’s signature Learning Expeditions and components of its Development pillar has become a blueprint for annual collocations at Amcor’s international locations such as Chicago, Miami and Singapore.

Highlights

Since the inception of the Accelerated Career Development Program, building an empathic and mutually supportive community has been a central ambition of the collaboration between Amcor and WDHB. A number of features incorporated into the collocation programs have aimed at this goal.

Setting the Groundwork for a Vibrant Community:

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    Specific focus on team building and team dynamics, transparent communications and feedback culture, mental and physical resilience as well as wellbeing

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    Touchpoints and networking opportunities with top leaders from Amcor’s global management as well as deep-dives on Amcor strategy and business practices turbocharging ACDPers’ fluency

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    Testimonial and exchanges with outside executives on themes such as cross-business collaboration, mutual support, stakeholder management and success in matrix organizations

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    Regular contributions on the topics of intercultural competency and cross-cultural collaboration along with deep immersions into various corporate cultures, environments and their practices

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    Establishment of a safe and open space for the ACDP community to collectively reflect, share challenges, discuss opportunities and offer mutual advice and support

Impact

From onboarding to the annual meetups and the final graduation, the collocations for the ACDP cohorts have become landmark events in the career path at Amcor with consistently high stakeholder appraisals.
It’s where they take a breather from the demanding environment of their everyday duties, reconnect among peers, reflect on their learnings and chart the path for months to come.

Moreover, an ingenious mix of internal and external components has allowed these sessions to become important platforms to react to changes in the environment and Amcor strategy and inject inspiration ranging from global macro-trends and industry evolutions to contemporary management and leadership practices.

Not only has this served as a conduit for important outside-in perspectives to reach into the world of Amcor, it has also empowered the ACDPers to become champions in Amcor’s own transformation, advancing their mastery on topics such as sustainability, innovation and leadership, which are all highly relevant to the business today.

«As a presenter, I had the chance to be part of the Onboarding and Learning Expeditions facilitated by WDHB. I was impressed by the diversity of learning experiences and the mix of internal and external speakers as well as different company visits. For our participants, it was a valuable week away from their day-to-day responsibilities to gain new insights and challenge their way of thinking.»

Hilary Crowe, VP Human Resources & Communications, Amcor Specialty Cartons

«I’ve had the opportunity to work on different learning expeditions for the ACDP program. It was always a great pleasure working with WDHB, I especially value their expertise in creating a memorable experience and their creative ideas. For our participants it’s a great way of networking, learning new ways of thinking and expanding their knowledge. The ideas that were generated during an expedition enable the ACDP participants to be great change agents.»

Ilsa Zulji, Talent & Development Manager, Amcor Group

«The level of actionable knowledge you gain by engaging intensively with top business minds from other industries simply cannot be acquired in a classroom. As a participant, WDHB’s programs have helped me evolve my mindset and further develop the way I impact our organization.»

Carlos Trubasz, Strategic Marketing Manager and participant of Amcor’s Accelerated Career Development Program, Amcor Flexibles EMEA

Changing Culture
Changes the Game

A series of Learning Expeditions provided Belfius with the energy and inspiration to innovate and transform customer journeys in their market. Building on early successes the company experienced with their award-winning banking app, WDHB helped shifting the collective mindset of the organization by introducing new practices and tools.

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Context & Challenge

Belfius is a Belgian banking and insurance group with a staff of over 6,400 and a total consolidated balance sheet of EUR 172 billion. The organization, with roots going back to 1860, had gone through a major turn-around and rebranding following the financial crisis.

New practices and tools needed to be contextualized with awareness, a sense of urgency and a mental shift in order to build confidence, inject energy and enthusiasm into a company that was getting cautious and protective but needed to go beyond its then perimeter.

Collaboration with WDHB

In a competitive bidding process, the decision was made by management to do a first set of Learning Expeditions. Two week-long programs on accelerated digital transformation and innovation brought Belfius’ top leaders to New York, Boston and San Francisco.

The target group expanded over time and our partnership progressively evolved as we adapted the thematic architecture to gradually more cutting-edge and specific topics focusing on disruption patterns, hyperconnectivity and ecosystem.

The most recent expeditions had a focus on user experience and technology-driven business model innovation respectively, to leverage the impact that the programs had on the organization with added deep dives and a focus that can be applied in the businesses.

Highlights

A selection of Themes and Destinations we covered with Belfius:

lxmap
San Francisco Programs:

Growth Mindset: Accelerating Digital Transformation & Innovation

Winning Hearts & Minds with Re-Envisioned Interactions

Tokyo Programs:

Powering Disruption with Speed, Scale & Hyperconnectivity

Boston Programs:

Growth Mindset: Accelerating Digital Transformation & Innovation

New York City:

Growth Mindset: Accelerating Digital Transformation & Innovation

Toronto:

Growth Mindset: Accelerating Digital Transformation & Innovation

Seoul:

Powering Disruption with Speed, Scale & Hyperconnectivity

Beijing

Creating Disruptive Value in the Platform Economy

Hong Kong & Shenzhen Programs:

Powering Disruption with Speed, Scale & Hyperconnectivity

Singapore Programs:

Creating Disruptive Value in the Platform Economy

Helsinki

Engaging Ecosystems for Innovation & Transformation

Tallinn:

Engaging Ecosystems for Innovation & Transformation

  • Growth Mindset: Accelerating Digital Transformation & Innovation

    Boston, New York City & San Francisco
  • Powering Disruption with Speed, Scale & Hyperconnectivity

    Hong Kong, Seoul, Shenzhen, Shanghai, Tokyo
  • Engaging Ecosystems for Innovation & Transformation

    Helsinki & Tallinn
  • Winning Hearts & Minds with Re-Envisioned Interactions

    Toronto & San Francisco
  • Creating Disruptive Value in the Platform Economy

    Singapore & Beijing

Impact

Starting as an inspirational program to invigorate a growth mindset, our Learning Expeditions have turned into a staple of Belfius’ strategic discovery, with 7 programs added since 2016, helping the leader in digital banking to stay ahead of the curve and setting the roadmap for the future.

Belfius’ public image as a digital trailblazer and a force of innovation has been confirmed and recognized many times over with awards, disruptive innovations the launch of various white-label products and the first banking chatbot in Belgium, amongst other initiatives.

WDHB helped in bringing those topic front and center and creating a strong networking effect among top leadership and empathy between various business functions and lines.

The recent launch of an internally coordinated immersive development program (Leadershift) on managerial practices and feedback culture was also a direct result of the deeper exposure to
progressive workplace cultures and experiential learning approaches.

“Together we have achieved what we set out to do: To change the conversation in Belfius and instill a culture of innovation and collaboration. WDHB pushed us out of our comfort zone and we were
always right to trust WDHB.”

Camille Gillon, Head of Human Resources Management, Belfius Bank

Bolstering a
Beautiful Lead

L’Oréal has emerged from a massive transformation journey successfully expanding its leadership position in a highly disrupted market. WDHB has supported the evolution in the organization’s thinking around how to respond to the various shifts observed in customers, markets, technologies, employees and practices.

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Context & Challenge

For over 110 years, L’Oréal has devoted its energy and competencies to one sole business: beauty. As the global number one in this field, L’Oréal is present with a flotilla of 36 complimentary brands in 150 countries on five continents. In 2019, the 88,000 employees have contributed to sales of 29.9 billion euros.

A few years ago, L’Oréal has embarked on an important transformation. What was triggered by the desire to build digital into the company’s DNA has expanded into a more fundamental overhaul of the organization’s thinking around how to respond to the various evolutions observed in customers, markets, technologies, employees and practices.

Collaboration with WDHB

After choosing WDHB as partner in a highly competitive selection process and demonstrating highest satisfaction after a number of highstakes projects, L’Oréal has concluded a framework contract establishing a formal relationship with WDHB as a groupwide provider of experiential learning programs. Our teams continue to work with business leaders and learning specialists in the design of impactful opportunities for change and growth.

As L’Oréal has shifted gears in its change journey, moving from the initial focus of digital transformation to digital acceleration and embracing the ambition of becoming a digital-first company, expeditions, events and programs have evolved to address new focus areas and incorporate additional elements on cultural and managerial practices into the learning objectives.

Highlights

The success of our first programs on digital transformation and the magnitude of change the beauty market was facing, led to L’Oréal trusting us with diverse audiences. Highlights include:

San Fran
Learning Expeditions

Executive Committee (1 in San Francisco, 1 in Seattle)

Shanghai
Immersive Development Programs

L’Oréal China (Shanghai)

Lancôme (New York City)

NYC
Learning Expeditions

Brand President Community (New York City & San Francisco) 

Community of Country CEOs and Zone Directors (Los Angeles and San Francisco)

Seattle
Learning Expeditions

Operations Management Committee (San Francisco and Seattle)

Professional Products Management Committee (New York City)

Travel Retail Management Committee (Dallas and San Francisco)

Hong Kong
Senior Leadership Meetings

Consumer Products Division (London and Paris)

Asia Pacific Zone (Seoul, Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur)

Eastern Europe and Africa, Middle East Zones (Dublin and Berlin)

Impact

Learning Expeditions, Senior Leadership Meetings and localized Immersive Programs have become important people and strategy development tools in L’Oréal’s register.

In orchestration with other change efforts, they have been key to bringing decision-makers on the same page, expanding their contextual awareness about shifts and opportunities and accelerating the transformation journey making L’Oréal an undisputed digital trailblazer – not only in beauty but across the luxury and consumer industries.

While serving as platforms for strategic discovery on topics of paramount importance to L’Oréal, Learning Expeditions continue to provide occasions to explore, renew and deepen relations with important players and ecosystems around the world – often resulting in new collaborations and partnerships.

Together with Senior Leadership Meetings, they also keep on being moments for teams to sync up, define priorities, foster empathy and – last but not least – build community.

Living a Network-Centric Mindset

For years, Learning Expeditions have been the highlight of Swiss Life’s multi-modular Key Persons Programme and an important platform to inspire leaders with contemporary trends and practices. When the pandemic affected the experience of the latest cohorts, WDHB’s extensive insight enabled us to support Swiss Life in curriculum design and virtual event planning to adapt course and activate the community.

swisslifeblur

Context & Challenge

With 160 years of history, Swiss Life is the oldest provider of life insurance and pensions in Switzerland. Today, the company offers a wide range of financial services in its key markets of France, Germany and Switzerland or through its Asset Managers and International divisions on a global scale. Due to its pioneering focus on real estate as asset class, Swiss Life is the world’s 9th largest real estate owner.

As the group’s only cross-divisional talent development offering, the Key Persons Programme (KPP) is the primary platform for capacity building and organizational development with senior leaders. Injecting outside-in perspectives into the curriculum has been a primary objective behind the Learning Expedition module.

During Covid-19, the task force set up to respond to the Corona context asked the current KPP classes for support to analyze and anticipate the impact of newly triggered, accelerated or accentuated shifts in the business, the organization and its environment.

Collaboration with WDHB

WDHB has been working closely with Swiss Life Group Talent Development to design and deliver Learning Expeditions as an integral part of the multi-modular leadership journey, addressing topics of strategic and organizational importance and opening the organization and its leaders to evolutions of an ever-evolving context.

While the program has been continuously updated over the years, a more substantial redesign has been underway when Covid-19 intervened. The circumstances encouraged more decisive adaptations (shifting to virtual, exploring hybrid formats) while the special mandate offered an opportunity to incorporate futures thinking components and cross-divisional group work on trend analysis into the curriculum.

The «Shaping the Future Day», an annual gathering of the talent development program alumni, was turned into a massive virtual event, serving as a major milestone in the mandate process and offered a platform for the entire community of 120 contributors to align and actively work on contents generated by the current KPP cohorts.

Highlights

Contributing to the KPP Corona Mandate and the Shaping the Future Day 2020, WDHB activated a wide variety of expertise areas:

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    Curriculum design, partner outreach, briefing and integration as well as participant engagement for foresight learning sessions

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    Continuous coaching, feedback and content management for seven thematic working groups active on foresight projects

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    Virtual event design, scripting, project, stakeholder and vendor management, participant administration and communications

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    Preparation of speaker briefings, establishment of moderators’ script, keynote speaker outreach/briefing, event documentation

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    Close collaboration with internal technology and communications stakeholders, design of contents with video production company

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    Co-design of break-out architecture, facilitation crew coordination, (co-)facilitation of 4 of 7 break-outs using virtual whiteboards

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    On-site event coordination with TV studio on script and contents, in-studio presentations, evaluation and content follow-up

Impact

Learning Expeditions have been consistently rated as a highlight of the Key Persons Programme. It allows participants to raise contextual awareness, explore new and best practices, build empathy amongst each other and expand their understanding of leadership roles from a personal, organizational and strategic perspective. Ultimatively, it turns them into a network of valuable change agents to the organization. This component will continue to address topics high on the company’s priority list while becoming more co-created and integrated with other modules.

As a result of the Corona Mandate, 36 Swiss Life leaders have been familiarized with foresight mindsets and toolsets and have applied those in the context as shaped by Covid-19, identifying 31 trends, developing 26 scenarios as foundation for the Shaping the Future Day community to identify over 100 opportunities for Swiss Life Group.

The Shaping the Future Day virtual event has solicited unprecedented degrees of participant engagement and satisfaction setting a new standard for this type of format. Moreover, thanks to the coherent integration into the Corona Mandate process and the numerous feature innovations, the event left a mark by fully living up to its claim.

«In a challenging situation, WDHB co-developed with us an ad-hoc curriculum and co-creative process to analyze and respond to challenges associated with Covid-19. They were also instrumental in designing the Shaping the Future virtual event setting new standards in the use of media and interaction tools. Together, we continue to shape the future of learning & development at Swiss Life.»

Sandro Muri, Group Head Talent Development, Swiss Life