Allied Mutual Insurance (AMI), a New Zealand-based insurance firm, has a very firm focus on customer service and local representation. Following a merger, it resolved to rebrand and implement cultural change to enhance its point of difference in the marketplace and community.
The key challenge
The challenge was to unite AMI staff across head office as well as branches spread throughout the North and South Islands and get them to embrace a common culture and customer service ethos; to understand and own AMI’s rebranded values of “Care, Assist and Deliver.”A strategic, long-term partnership to develop people and culture
When we began working with AMI, we took a strategic approach to help implement AMI’s new brand values and put in place a platform with which to sustain cultural change among leaders and employees. Phase one focused on the concept of personal mastery and building excellence. The aim of this was to empower individuals to believe in their own capabilities so that they could respond positively and meet the demands of cultural change occurring within the organization. Workshops in phase two went a step further and focused on leadership and behavior while examining AMI’s brand values as reflected by “Care, Assist, Deliver”. Our methodology assisted staff to understand how AMI’s focus on customer service directly related to them in their roles at work… How could they best adopt the brand values so they were reflected in their behavior each day at work and with each customer interaction? More than 400 staff participated in these workshops, which involved all customer service staff, including insurance assessors from branches throughout New Zealand. The Pacific Institute also trained a team of internal facilitators to equip AMI with the ability to regularly reinforce its values.
Our approach delivered sustainable success for AMI
- AMI was voted as one of the top 10 employers in NZ.
- AMI rose to #2 in the ranking for share of the domestic insurance market.
We have worked with AMI over the past 13 years, and it has sustained its desired culture where leaders, as well as front-line branch employees, embrace “Care, Assist, Deliver” in their everyday roles at work. This shift in values, behavior and a real customer focus has seen AMI enjoy genuine engagement with local communities through its branch network. AMI continues to use The Pacific Institute methodology as part of its induction for new staff and for ongoing people development.
“We merged two companies with vastly different cultures. We needed a program that would bring our people together and give them tools to manage the change process ahead of them. The Pacific Institute helped develop the cultural aspects, making our people more receptive to systems and procedural changes now being put in place. Morale is high and the effort put in to achieving company goals has increased dramatically. The Pacific Institute has helped create a consistent culture throughout the organization and [to] open channels of communication. Individuals are now aligned with the future of the company.”
John Balmforth, Chief Executive Officer