Culture change at Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority
The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (Reef Authority) is the entrusted regulator for the care and development of the Great Barrier Reef. They initiated a culture change programme to improve engagement with the communities along the Reef’s coastline.
The Reef Authority wanted better share knowledge and build trust and understanding. They hoped stronger community engagement would develop relationships and increase voluntary compliance with policies and improve business results through better management decisions and enhanced stewardship of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.
An essential task was creating a framework defining what working in partnership with the community meant for their organisation. This framework needed to describe the desired behaviours and attitudes (internal and external), tools and processes. To be adopted as a successful change initiative across the organisation, the framework content had to come from both the staff and directors of the Reef Authority.
Impact Australia worked with the Reef Authority on a three-stage solution to:
- Illuminate - assess the current culture towards community engagement through an all-staff survey.
- Develop - facilitate a senior management workshop to work through the issues raised and develop future strategies.
- Implement - communicate a strategy for a culture change towards best practice community engagement and support the directors as they empowered their staff to undertake this in their jobs on a daily basis.
The Reef Authority chose to work with Impact Australia because of their expertise in driving culture change combined with a practical based solution. Their approach was seen by all who took part as an unbiased yet formal process to bring the ideas, problems and barriers facing the organisation to light. Impact’s involvement effectively depersonalised the process and enabled a greater focus on the issues rather than the people.
Impact’s staff survey was a comprehensive and multidimensional report. The resulting senior manager workshop unified that team. In turn, this led the directors to define the behaviours, attitudes, tools and processes that will best improve community engagement and communicate how this will be incorporated into everyday business. The Reef Authority benefited from a shared vision highlighting what community engagement means for their business.