A project team of USB Executive Development’s (USB-ED) Senior Management Development Programme (SMDP) recently brought their business acumen, leadership and change management, and strategic skills to bear at the Woodside Special Care Centre in Rondebosch East.
The centre is a residential home caring for 90 profoundly intellectually and physically disabled residents in the area and celebrates their 40th anniversary this year.
As part of the SMDP, participants have to complete individual assignments, as well as a group business-driven action learning (BDAL) project. As part of the latter, a charity had to be “adopted” for the duration of the programme.
For the SMDP
project team of Mxolisi Moolman, Nthabiseng Mutisya, Faiek Hendricks, Christopher Evans and Tracy Vogt the choice was the Woodside Special Care Centre
. The team did their final panel presentations last week, during which they handed over a portrait to representatives and directors of the centre – a very special occasion for the team and the centre.
Tracy Vogt, a Technical Manager at Woolworths Foods, says they chose Woodside because it was known to her and located in Cape Town. “When we visited the centre the children (and some adults who had grown up in the home) tugged at our heartstrings. They were so beautiful and friendly, and yet profoundly disabled.”
Woodside is a medium sized organisation, and for our purposes “not too small and not too big.”
The Woodside management, led by their General Manager, Melanie Brand, welcomed us from the start, and shared openly and honestly their challenges as well as their desire for change and vision for the future. They were prepared to be vulnerable and trusted us with their challenges and dreams.
“We had several values and vision sessions with their staff, which was supported by one of their board members, Mcebisi Mvuya. In these sessions the staff also shared their desired state for Woodside, as well as their needs.
“At the heart of it, they just wanted to be happy at work to provide the best possible care and treatment to their “children” – the residents of Woodside.”
We briefed the artist, Pete Woodbridge, to depict their desired state based on all the management and staff’s dreams for Woodside.
Post the SMDP Programme
, the team offered 67 hours of their time to Woodside to co-create a strategic plan for the centre. This will include agreeing goals and development plans for each manager and staff member.
The strategic session will also serve as training on the application of the eCaps model, which was part of the SMDP programme. The team will support the change management plan and develop a climate survey which will assist Woodside track their progress in the future.
“The recommended plan will become embedded as a business cycle for Woodside into the future. Some of the team members will continue working with the Centre beyond the 67 hours to provide coaching and ongoing support,” Tracy says.