Cost savings achieved with ‘Mastering Management’ programme

Separated by the River Thames, South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse are neighbouring districts councils providing council services to over 250,00 people that live within their boundaries.

The Challenge

Improve the leadership capabilities of staff working within a new and challenging shared services model

Responding to the needs of their new shared management and staffing structure, South Oxfordshire and the Vale of White Horse Councils identified a need to up-skill their service managers and team leaders in order to deliver the best and most efficient services with reduced budgets. Matt Prosser, Strategic Director, South and Vale Councils, explained, “We’d just begun to pull our services together, and people who previously had one or two members of staff found themselves managing larger teams. We really needed to equip all the service managers with the knowledge and skills to manage their teams well.’

The Approach

Programmes of workshops, cafes, action learning sets and mentoring to develop leadership and coaching skills

We developed and delivered a ‘Mastering Management’ programme of tailored workshops, management cafes, action learning sets and mentoring to develop core leadership, management and coaching skills.

As buy-in of all the service managers was very important, they were involved in taster sessions with two shortlisted organisations and overwhelmingly chose us for the programme. ‘In addition to their unique blend of psychological understanding and organisational development expertise, TLC showed creativity and innovation in their approach - they were a good fit for our organisation, plus they have a great track record of delivery’, says Matt.


Positive, motivated staff with higher engagement, improved collaborative team working and increased efficiencies with significant cost savings

The benefits of the programme have been significant with service managers working collaboratively and learning from each other. They are now equipped to have difficult conversations and there has been a reduction in conflict. Absence rates have also gone down, from an average of 8.5 days per year to 6.5 across three years and some of this has been attributed to the Mastering Management.

Matt comments, ‘Everyone has certainly ‘upped’ their game. The service managers feel capable to take on extra responsibility across a range of service departments and coupled with a reduction in headcount we are heading towards £1million of public money saved over the duration of the programme’.

‘Our relationship with TLC has been fantastic. We have been looked after extremely well; they are responsive and flexible, and the programme has really benefited from having honest conversations relating to its content.’

The success of the programme has been recognised externally by winning the Training Journal Gold award for 'Best Change Management Programme'.

The Impact

  • Saving of £1 million over 4 years
  • Absence reduction from 8.5 days to 6.5 days
  • Increased efficiencies
  • Reduction in conflicts
  • Better collaboration
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The Learning Curve (TLC) Ltd

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