Case Study: How to Break Down Silos Using Zero Budget

Breaking down silos, zero budget (case study)

Breaking down silos, zero budget (case study)

ANIDA, the real estate arm of the large Spanish bank BBVA, employs about 300 people across many departments. These departments are very specific to the real estate business and far from the banking side.

Issue

As ANIDA is not core to the banking business, the corporate Communication and Brand (C&B) department does not cover it. Instead, an autonomous C&B department is created to work specifically for ANIDA, with no responsibilities for any of the banking departments.

The new Director of this new department finds that they are left out of most internal communications. Furthermore, most departments are completely “siloed”; in other words, they don’t know (nor cared about) the other departments’projects.

All in all, internal communication is nowhere to be found.

Action

The Director of ANIDA’s C&B (Ms Paz LANDALUCE) attends a public ExperienTalk™ (or experiential keynote speech) hosted by Atrevia in Madrid on the topic “Connect Teams by Connecting Perspectives.”

One of the practical strategies in the session concerns holding regular informal meetings, which can providehigh value to participants. Such a strategy appeals to the Director and it is the action that she commits to do after the ExperienTalk™ (Note: As you might already know, most ExperienTalks™ include regular reminders about an action that each participant sets for himself or herself).

She takes home the energy and enthusiasm accrued at the ExperienTalk™ and proceeds to launch two sets of meetings:

1. Fortnightly meetings with the Marketing department to update one other on current and upcoming projects.

2. A monthly “Business Forum” with a representative of each and every department. Each participant provides updates and metrics on their projects at this meeting.

Both meetings are zero-cost events. Thus, they do not affect the budget, only the participants’ schedules.

Outcome

While it takes time to bring the meetings to a critical mass of participants, the C&B Director’s persistence does achieve it. With even more persistence, she gets them not just to listen but also to talk, and not just to her but among the different departments.

Forward ahead three months and they start new collaborative projects. Even some teams request some collaboration in specific areas to other teams.

Such collaboration had not been seen before. It was sparked by zero-budget activities and plenty of enthusiasm.

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