The Freud Museum

Future fit

Our work with The Freud Museum followed on from the museum engaging in an Arts Council Survive and Thrive process and a Board Review. These helped the museum identify key organisational development objectives – towards The Freud Museum being fit and ready for its future – around staff structures, communication, balance of responsibilities and staff engagement.

Engaging in change

Museum Director Carol Seigel wanted everyone across the organisation to have the opportunity to get involved in the process of change and to contribute to the solutions. One of our first steps was to establish a steering group of staff members to help guide the programme of work and support communications across the organisation.

Over a period of six months, we worked with a strong coaching approach at individual, team and whole organisation levels, trusting the organisation’s own ability to make change happen and building trust in working together to encourage contribution, challenge and fresh thinking.

“The style and approach was very good for this group of people – questioning, reflective, supportive, and encouraging rather than telling people what to do”.

Responsive and relevant

Each wave of discovery and learning was given time for problem solving, testing out, and bedding in of new behaviours in live settings.  In working across all levels we gained a deeper level of understanding of the barriers to change and some new priorities emerged. These in turn were built into the programme of work, ensuring it remained responsive and relevant.

“Some of the all staff group exercises were quite challenging, but they worked well and have given us a structure for moving forward”

What difference did our work make?

Staff at the museum were involved in developing a vision and a new strategic plan for the museum. They also took responsibility for reviewing roles within their teams and fed back to the Director on their strategic priorities for the future. As a result of this work, one team made significant changes to its structure and way of operating.

Museum staff  tried out a new way of planning, based on improving communications between teams which will now be built into a regular framework of review and forward planning in the museum.

Alongside, staff have developed better communications between teams, and a new approach to expressing difference and disagreement, and for discussing inappropriate behaviour. Improved cross-team communication has had a positive knock on effect of better working together on shared problems and ideas, which will help the museum work through some of the challenges of the future.

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