Case Study: Embedding customer centric behaviours in a Financial Services organisation 

A real life example provided by Grass Roots UK Ltd

The Company

This bank is one of the largest financial services organisations in the world with 2,000+ high street branches in the UK.

To be number one in the changing UK financial market this organisation needs to remain at the leading edge. To achieve this it has to defend and extend UK banking, build new international markets, grow a world-class global product business and develop operational excellence. As well as attracting new customers, this organisation has to maximise the value of its loyal ones – a challenge made easier if branch and call centre employees deliver an outstanding customer experience.

The programme

Using the Grass Roots philosophy of communicate, educate, measure and reward, the programme was launched with the aim of inspiring their people.

Touching over 23,000 UK employees, it utilised leading edge learning approaches to get ahead of the competition. Its essence was embracing a series of cleverly defined customer centric behaviours. The programme challenges and informs employees to ‘be’ welcoming, inquisitive, knowledgeable, innovative, proud and above all memorable.

Communicate – Our design studio produced a range of powerful communications. High visibility on launch day created major impact and this was followed with seven weeks of short bursts of activity to create a lasting impression with employees and customers.

Educate – The ‘be’s were embedded through an innovative toolkit of interactive learning tools launched through a cascade approach beginning at regional level with workshops. Post launch the programme continued to focus on operational excellence and we delivered a range of activities to keep the behaviours and focus alive including five interactive DVDs that walked managers and their teams through key processes and focused on delighting the customer.

Measure  – Grass Roots launched a revolutionary new programme designed to measure the performance of retail banking across all aspects of a customer’s experience. The concept was simply to measure  ‘behaviour’ performance from account opening, through a transaction and enquiry and finally to the possible closure of the account over a five month rolling programme.  To achieve this, in less than a month Grass Roots recruited and created over 1,100 new Barclays customers to take part in the programme.

Reward – A new £4 million recognition programme was developed to recognise and reward performance, incorporating three strategic rewards: for recognition, for loyalty,  for rewarding employees for long service and for innovation, rewarding and encouraging employees for introducing and implementing new ideas.


The programme tracks how branch employees are performing on the behaviours. Scores are highlighted in graphical reports that are sent to branches at the end of each scenario enabling managers to communicate results and give ‘instant’ rewards for seeing the behaviours in action.

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