Vodafone Retail

You don't need an advisor, teacher, assistant or coach. In transformation, you need a partner. Uphill Partners is your "partner in crime" in the product transformation of your business. Uphill Partners measures your success with customer success, so it's always about partnership, about finding joint solutions and opportunities. For us — 7 teams in just 11 months: new products, new real income. And new, qualitatively new people!

Nadezhda Sirenko
Director of Human Resources Vodafone Ukraine

The initial plan for expanding the retail network called for the opening of 200 retail outlets in the first year. 

We got to work in the middle of September. At that point, they had 60 retail locations, that is they were catastrophically behind schedule. What to do?

We started by training personnel responsible for opening new locations.

We gathered these employees in a single room and taught them Scrum processes. The basis of Scrum is the Deming cycle, or PDCA (plan > do > check > act), which clearly describes all roles and responsibilities, a culture of effective business meetings, a culture of continuous improvement, and total transparency.

But we didn’t stop at Scrum; we applied other methods like Kanban boards, which helped the teams to manage their work more efficiently.

Then, we conducted a session on organizational design.

Vodafone employees formulated the optimal structure for teams and roles necessary to work effectively on opening new stores.

We insisted on creating a separate room for the team analogous to the Obeya Room in the Toyota management system. This room is where the team will have all its important regular meetings, make decisions, and celebrate victories.

To track how teams are moving towards their key goals, we proposed using a Burn-up Chart. This clearly shows everyone where we are now and where we’re going. Trends were discussed at daily standup meetings.

The team generated a list of current problems, and our coach helped them to constructively discuss possible solutions, make decisions, and remove obstacles preventing them from moving forward. We conducted such facilitation sessions regularly.

In the first weeks of work, we taught them to communicate with each other effectively.

We also discovered that a key demotivating factor for employees was the lack of a coffee machine on their floor. Management solved this problem quickly after learning of it from our coaches.

We also worked individually with company leaders in a coaching format.

We supported them, taught them, and helped them to solve problems. This work was done ‘offstage’ out of sight of line employees, but it has a lasting effect in strengthening team success.

A month into our work with Vodafone, it was clear that 200 retail outlets in one year was a far too ambitious goal. After a review of the plan, the goal was changed to 140. They met this target, opening 142 locations by the end of that year, and by March of the next year, there were already 220! After seven months of work with Uphill Partners, Vodafone had fully achieved its desired results.

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