Morrisons: Senior Team Coaching contributes to successful system implementation

In June 2010, DevelopChange were asked to provide a coach who would work with the senior management teams at 5 Produce sites within Morrisons Manufacturing. A project called "Evolve" was to introduce a new Oracle system to Produce and if successful, the aim was to then roll this out to all other Manufacturing sites. As Morrisons performs all of its own manufacturing, making it unique amongst all the supermarket brands, it was vital that each site achieved as smooth a cutover as possible, on time, to budget and with minimal disruption to the Retail operation.

Behind the scenes a company called Wipro provided all the IT expertise whilst internally, Morrisons pulled together an "Oracle" team to be the interface between the technical side and the operational aspects of the implementation.

Develop Change provided a coach with experience of an Oracle implementation who worked at the Produce sites alongside the General Manager and their senior teams.

The DevelopChange solution included the following:

Team Coaching - this role included working with the site senior team to agree common aims and ambitions for each site, as well as an agreed way of working together in the run-up to the implementation. One teambuilding session was held early in the process and a second one was carried out after the implementation to help the team consolidate their learning and build solid foundations for making Oracle "business as usual" as quickly as possible.

Accelerated Team Building with the Site and the Oracle team - with time being so tight and essential deadlines to be met, there was no time to allow natural team building processes to happen. DevelopChange designed and delivered a half day Team Build that brought together all of the key staff from each site with all of the people in the Oracle Team and we provided an energetic, demanding and enjoyable series of activities to help individuals quickly forge relationships with their colleagues. These events were seen as very important contributors to the effective team working that followed.

1:1 Coaching - a series of coaching sessions were held on site between the DevelopChange coach and each member of the Site Senior Team. Typically, these sessions lasted an hour and were held weekly over a period of 6 - 12 weeks depending on the site. The aims of these sessions were:

  • to help individuals face up to their own accountabilities as part of the implementation
  • to enable the senior team to collectively own the accountability for the success of this project at their site
  • to ensure that responsibility, empowerment and decision making were driven down to the correct point in the organisation to gain engagement from staff at all levels, and
  • to create a leadership culture that was supportive and blame-free, but also focused and results driven


The result was that all 5 Produce sites had Oracle implemented successfully. Evolve is currently being rolled out across other areas of the Manufacturing business and this will continue into 2013.