Hearing about the need for change during a pilot staff suggestion scheme inspired four members of Roads & Grounds to sign up as Change Agents (CANs).
Following a series of question and answer sessions that kicked off the pilot and highlighted the work being undertaken to transform the Council, the men signed up to the Change Agent Network, joining two others from their service who’d previously joined.
Launched in 2017, the network now has over 100 CANs working across the Council to encourage and motivate colleagues to identify changes to help improve their service.
Billy Brown, one of the new CANs in Grounds Maintenance, said he signed up so he could give his colleagues a voice.
He said: “I’m not shy at speaking my mind but a lot of my fellow workers don’t have the confidence to stand up and say their piece. I signed up to be a CAN because I wanted to contribute my own ideas but also voice their thoughts too, as everyone should have an opportunity to be heard.”
Although some members of Roads & Grounds were sceptical about the staff suggestion scheme when it launched, the question and answer sessions made them realise it would be worth their while to submit ideas.
Billy said: “Listening to people speak about the need for change initially worried folk, as the first thing you think about is job security, but we valued hearing the message directly from the management team rather than through rumours. People also valued the opportunity to ask management questions there and then.
“A few of the men did think the staff suggestion scheme would be a waste of time and money, and that the suggestions would be flung in the bucket, but people then started getting feedback from their supervisor about some of the ideas being put forward. Towards the end people appreciated the opportunity to have their say.
“Changes have been made in the canteen on the back of suggestions and the boys who use it say it is comfier. We just need to wait and see if any of the bigger ideas result in change then we’ll know if the scheme has been worthwhile.”
Photographed (from left to right) are Roads & Grounds CANs: Anthony Grundy, Martin Campbell, Gary Neill, Dean Gair, and John Day. Mr Brown wasn't available on the day for the photoshoot.