Impact  |  West Pharmaceutical Services

Inspiring a Culture of Innovation by Empowering Internal Ambassadors

Inspiring a Culture of Innovation

Together, Maddock Douglas and West are working to empower and inspire its Global Innovation Ambassadors by equipping them with the skills and knowledge necessary to demystify design thinking and spread their newly minted Culture of Innovation to offices and teams around the world.

The Challenge

Translate the clearly defined leadership and growth strategies of the West Global Innovation Team through their internal Ambassador program and share the tenets of their newly established Culture of Innovation to inform and empower teams around the globe.

The Impact

The success of West’s first class of Global Innovation Ambassadors in 2017 served as a solid foundation for evangelizing the company’s Culture of Innovation, which, in addition to the Ambassador program, features an Innovation Roadshow (a traveling three-day conference designed to instill best practices across the organization).

The Story

West, a global solutions provider for integrated containment and delivery for injectable medicines, approached Maddock Douglas with the seeds of their Ambassador program freshly planted and 33 participants already selected. We were charged with helping to transform this team into internal experts on innovation best practices, to empower them to become grassroots innovation advocates within the organization, and to develop their ability to bring those skills, mindsets, and processes to their home offices and teams.

Maddock Douglas designed and co-presented the kickoff and five training sessions, during which we unveiled these new skills and concepts to West’s ambassadors. We developed creative and engaging ways to introduce the ambassadors to their new roles, building not just the ability to talk about design thinking, but to actually embody and utilize fresh ways of thinking and doing. Though the kickoff was remote, we developed physical touchpoints for the teams with certificates and interactive packets, personal touches that are the hallmark of how Maddock Douglas connects with teams, growing trust and instilling confidence and ownership. The result was an enthusiastic and engaged team of ambassadors ready to roll out a new “yes and” way of thinking to their peers, equipped with the tools and skills they needed to embark on that journey.

Randy Simms facilitating at the World Café Workshop

Randy Simms facilitating at the World Café Workshop

Engaging pre-work, such as TED talks and participant observation activities, fueled discussion in interactive sessions that focused on observing unmet needs, articulating insights and understanding end user challenges before jumping to solutions. West ambassadors were encouraged to embrace creativity and to practice building on the success and ideas of others. These sessions focused on positivity and the fun, collaborative nature of innovation, ideas that stoked the excitement of the ambassadors, who, in turn, brought that energy to their peers throughout the company. Courses were designed for a diverse global audience with a sensitive eye to culturally relevant examples and language.

Cassie Slimmer and Randy Simms at the World Café workshop

Cassie Slimmer and Randy Simms at the World Café workshop

A hands-on World Café workshop followed those dynamic sessions, assembling the team of ambassadors from around the world so that they could practice their co-creation and innovation skills and new ways of thinking.

Wes Douglas sketching during the World Café

Wes Douglas sketching during the World Café

The first group of 33 Global Innovation Ambassadors in 2017 was successful in creating engaging internal dialogue and interest surrounding the Global Innovation initiative, and led to a second class of ambassadors in 2018 that drew over 50 applicants. In the spring of 2018, an Innovation Roadshow traveled to all major offices around the globe to further inform and energize the larger organization. The Global Innovation team and ambassadors utilized their newly honed skills to lead design thinking workshops and bring clarity to innovation best practices among their peers.