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Josh Graham: Teamwork makes leadership a more meaningful pursuit

Leadership & Teamwork: Insights from Josh Graham at Enlighten

Josh Graham: Teamwork makes leadership a more meaningful pursuit

Josh Graham is Change Program Director at Enlighten and as one of our emerging leaders he believes that the end results are always better when a team works as one towards a shared goal.

With a background in consulting and advisory for banking and financial services institutions, Josh has been part of Enlighten for nearly three years now. Having delivered projects for large and complex organisations across industries as well as geographies, Josh has witnessed all kinds of barriers that organisations face and is well positioned to drive stronger outcomes for Enlighten’s current and future clients.

However, it isn’t just about delivering projects for Josh who is passionate about ensuring that clients have the best experience with Enlighten along the way and continue to engage with Enlighten tools and methodologies well after the implementation. Having a positive energy and creating great relationships are key to delivering successful projects according to Josh. Here’s more of what he had to say.

Tell us a little bit about your role at Enlighten.

I joined Enlighten’s delivery team in 2020 as a consultant, implementing our software and helping clients gain success with our operational excellence methodology.

Currently, as Change Program Director, I oversee the implementation of our operational excellence products and methodologies with a greater focus on building relationships with key stakeholders. My role is all about understanding clients’ business strategies, areas of improvement, risks, and ensuring that we remain dynamic and align the methodology and Enlighten software accordingly.

Over the past three years, I have had the opportunity to work on projects for leading financial institutions across Australia, for a U.S. based global financial institution from China and Japan, as well as with teams in England and India delivering projects for a global leader in Assurance. The sheer diversity of regions, industries, and clients has helped broaden my experience as I navigated new and exciting professional challenges.

Is there anything that you would still like to achieve in your career or what is the next step in your journey?

I am committed to growing my skillset while supporting and developing new and existing colleagues in their training and development. Having been recently promoted to Change Program Director, I also look forward to growing in this role and learning from my various mentors within the company.

The next step in my journey is to further develop my client relationship and communication skills with C-level executives during the program implementation with a focus on ensuring the Enlighten program is embedded in a way that provides most value to our clients.

What are the biggest changes you have witnessed to date in the area of leadership and operational excellence?

In the area of leadership, the hybrid working environment has made it more difficult to build rapport, train and develop the team, and lead the team most effectively. This change has required leaders to be flexible and manage their team often at times without the face-to-face communication where it is easier to pick up on verbal cues and body language.

When it comes to operational excellence, the increased access to data has been a significant change. With some clients, there can often be too much data, which makes data-driven decision-making a challenge for them. To overcome this, we focus our attention on tailoring the product setup specific to each team’s needs during project implementation to ensure that leaders further up the chain are only seeing the data that is relevant to them.

What are some highlights you can see users experience with Enlighten?

A common theme we see in projects is that our clients don’t have enough data to make appropriate decisions related to the team and the business. Providing these clients transparency of data at all levels of their organisation and taking them through the possibilities of the Enlighten tool is always an exciting part of the implementation. However, seeing leaders have their ‘aha moment’ as they move through the change curve and start to understand the true benefits of our methodology and the assistance that the Enlighten software provides them is the ultimate reward. As leaders start to use this data to have open conversations and collaborate better with their team, that’s when we see the results improve considerably.

Enlighten supports businesses to celebrate daily successes and uncover the barriers that prevent people from getting their work done. What are some examples you have seen in this respect?

In a recent project, we witnessed a large improvement in staff engagement due to the reduction of barriers that were preventing staff members from completing their work effectively. Through transparency of individual and team-level data, we were able to uncover the barriers faced and workshop solutions for the barriers that proved the biggest hindrance. We brought the teams together for a root-cause analysis and implemented quick wins that enabled better communication between teams, strengthened training and development, and saw greater involvement and collaboration due to the continuous improvement initiatives implemented within the team and business unit.

You recently won the Enlighten BOBS award, a peer-nominated award for Enlighten team members who exemplify the BOBS code: Be respectful and humble, One team, Bring positive energy, Step up. Can you share with us how your approach to leadership contributed to this recognition and how it has influenced the dynamics of your team?

I’m incredibly grateful that my colleagues have recognised my efforts and believe that I demonstrate Enlighten’s core values.

As a leader, I lean on the ‘one team’ principle, giving everyone the opportunity to put forward their thoughts and suggestions because our shared goal is always implementing a project to the highest standard. I believe there is always room for improvement and it’s important to work as a team and give everyone a voice to achieve this.

Whilst our working environment has changed considerably over the past few years, as we transition back to face-to-face implementations, bringing positive energy and creating great relationships is incredibly important and I have witnessed the impact of this firsthand during our current project. I am lucky enough to work with a great team and be supported by our global colleagues which makes being a leader easier and a more meaningful pursuit.

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