Case Study: Skandia collaborates with independent distributors and fund managers to deliver innovative, world-class financial services.
With responsibility for the risk management of a global financial services brand, much of what Keith Jones, Head of Internal Audit and Risk Management for Skandia does is “relationship driven”. In fact, with a small, but strong team that needs to make itself known in order to make an impact, “communication skills are everything” says Keith.
“They may be called ‘soft’ skills, but there is a hard edge when it comes to the impact on your business. If you can’t communicate with people, they simply don’t tell you what you need to know. Communication impacts on everything we do, including attracting the right staff.”
Keith has worked with professional trainer, personal development coach, and founder of Rapporta, Mary-Louise Angoujard for two years. His initial objective was to improve his presentation skills, enabling him to discuss key work issues more effectively at Board level, and to improve his profile in pursuit of his personal objective of securing a Board-level appointment within three to five years.
However, following presentation skills training that took him through the basics of how to stand, dress, and what makes a ‘good’ presentation, Keith took his personal development a stage further, with Executive Coaching focused upon his life and career goals. Working with a coach enabled him to question the tactics he used to achieve his business objectives, and develop an action plan to address gaps in his time and priority management, delegation skills, management of meetings, and his leadership role.
“It was” says Keith “cathartic. Because it is often difficult to find time to plan ahead, yet that is what drives action. I now spend much more time planning for myself and my team. I plan for meetings, considering the message I want to deliver, the outcomes I want to achieve, and what I can give in return. I have renewed confidence and self-belief, and just as importantly, for the business, the adjustment to my personal style means people now listen to me, because they know our discussion will be important”.