Order of succession: How does the successor maintain what's good about his company's culture while also making his own mark?

During a series of workshops, the leadership team sharpened its focus on a shared identity and strengthened the ties that bind it together. The goal is to fully interlock the company's strategy with its culture, creating a firm foundation for the future.

Starting Point

When I took over leadership of the construction company Leyrer + Graf from my father in February 2013, I asked myself, “How can I preserve what is good about our culture while also putting a new stamp on the company?” I needed to expand upon the potential of our family business, which my father had successfully molded into a market innovator over the course of decades. It soon became clear to me that this next stage in our development would mean a cultural transformation, selectively taking on interpersonal cooperation (team development) as well as the personal development of our key performers.

Manres: Their Role and Approach

The first step on the path toward a trust-based, values-oriented company culture was to hold workshops for our leadership team. Here, the team members aligned themselves with a shared identity and strengthened their team spirit to tightly interlock the company strategy with the cultural side, creating a strong foundation for the future. By continually clarifying mutual expectations between the business leadership and the team, we facilitated our systematic development into an effective, high-performance collective. Individual counselling in the form of high-performance coaching brought a deeper dimension to my leadership function as a role model and trailblazer and intensified my transformational power to shape the company. In the next step, we developed a concise, shared mission statement together with the broader leadership team. This supported us in bringing new dynamics into the entire company. In the safe environment of the workshop setting, the leadership team addressed the current challenges facing the company and geared up to face future challenges while relying on their own resources.

Transforming from individual entrepreneurs into a nationwide group of companies

What We Achieved

The business leadership is now perceived as a unit and my leadership is deeply anchored in the company. There has been a noticeable closing of the ranks between the business leadership and the staff. Our interactions with each other are marked by proactive expressions of respect. A culture of learning through mistakes and feedback has been established, not just on the functional and operational level, but also with regard to cultural and interpersonal topics. Positive habits, like imparting meaning, taking pleasure in leadership, team spirit and personal maturity have become a part of the leadership team’s everyday consciousness. On various levels of the organization, topics like personal responsibility, trust-based relationship management, meaningful handling of conflicts and changes, emotions in leadership and coaching skills are now a way of life. The journey is ongoing, and the transformation process in which Leyrer + Graf now finds itself continues to unfold its blossoms and sustainably take root.