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Ágnes Galambos | Dávid Harangozó

Krauthammer

D&T
March 30, 2011

Krauthammer, a coaching, consulting and training company, has been operating for 40 years. The organization - with the slogan 'Keep it short and simple' - present in 23 countries in Europe, Asia Pacific, the United States and South America.

As Ágnes Galambos, Office Leader of Krauthammer Budapest explains:“the focus is on permanent and systematic behavioral change at individual, team and corporate levels. This, we believe, is a cornerstone for operational improvement. The conceptual hallmarks of Krauthammer could be expressed as a blend of lucidity, solidity and pragmatism.

Companies which have chosen to work with us in Hungary include Magyar Telekom, AVON, ENI, BASF and MERCK.” Rather than juggling with nice-sounding words, engineering a concept that is totally adaptable to real life situations and ensuring all tools fit this is a key driver for Krauthammer. All in order to achieve distinctive improvements in client performance.

The Hungarian office of Krauthammer, as the organization in general, places great emphasis on pragmatism. This means that, however rigorously and analytically a problem is initially framed, all findings and indicators must translate into the KISS principle (Keep it short and simple). In other words, any prescriptions must be short and concrete.

In the same vein, a Krauthammer trainer’s impetus is to help participants make the transition from know-how to show-how, learning by doing. According to its philosophy: assessment, too, can and should be solidly translated into practice in order to achieve permanent behavior change at all levels.

The primary assessment tool developed and used by Krauthammer and its clients is the ‘4LS Evaluation’. Based on a 360-degree process, this firstly identifies the observable behaviors an individual deploys in his or her professional environment. The process also helps participants to clearly and transparently indicate the steps to take to build on strengths and compensate for pitfalls.

The 4LS Evaluation model has been designed to minimize the possible distortions created by personal opinions. Firstly the behaviors are accurately set out and described by the tool. Secondly, the responses of around ten people in the subject’s professional environment are sought – including the self-report of the individual. Seeing the extent to which the responses are coherent gives further insights still.

A wide range of applied professional situations are covered by the tool. From interpersonal communication, decision-making, managing change, influencing upwards and conflict management to creativity, for example. The evaluee’s mastery of fundamental behavioral skills, such as self control and distance-taking also emerge from the analysis.

The notion of involving employees in an objective and fair assessment process, engaging them as key actors in their self development, fully acknowledges their role as a company’s most valuable assets. The tool is also an example of the seriousness with which Krauthammer takes quality assurance e. All Krauthammer consultants visit Krauthammer University for 4-6 weeks a year, receiving training on approaches and concepts.

Their feedback is subsequently translated into testing methods and developing new tools. It is possible that some of the most original ideas or the treatment of these emerge from the close working relationships between Krauthammer people. In a survey conducted in 2007-2008 with more than 90.000 employees, Towers Perrin defined engagement as “employee willingness and ability to contribute to company success”.

In other words, engagement is the extent to which employees “go the extra mile” – contributing more of their energy, creativity and passion on the job. The survey concludes that four out of five employees are not as engaged as they could be. Krauthammer’s own ‘Observatory’ – a survey conducted and published on an annual basis, confirms the extent to which job satisfaction and commitment levels of employees are consistently below par.

The question is: to what extent can a company’s sustainability, stability, profitability, even, be assured if four employees out of five employees are disengaged? Krauthammer itself has defined “engagement” as the junction of being connected to oneself and to one’s organization. An employee who is consistently authentic and adaptable, living in full symbiosis with his environment, is an inhabitant of his or her ‘sweet spot’, using her/his talent to serve others.

However, no marathon athlete can run a 42-km race every day. This is why Krauthammer developed a concept of ‘strategic disengagement’. This means using low positive energy, recharging one’s batteries, by giving oneself – and others – permission to temporarily disconnect from direct business activities and restore the conditions for high performance. “Being good at becoming better” could be a Krauthammer slogan.

D&T

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