Henley Forum - Justin Hughes

Justin Hughes, MD, Mission Excellence

Session title: Leading change, a contact sport

Theories on leading change abound; however, activation is a practice, not a theory, a ‘contact sport’ requiring difficult choices, hard decisions and commitment of resources. In this short case study, Justin Hughes analyses lessons from Coutts’ change from a sole trader-type system of individual private bankers to a team-based approach. Key lessons:

  • You get what you train for
  • You get what you reward
  • Leadership behaviour:
    • Overt executive sponsorship
    • Deployment of champions
    • Dealing with resistance
    • Communicate, communicate, communicate…

The presentation will cover both the background and execution as well as stressing against the test of time.

Justin is MD of Mission Excellence, a consultancy which partners with clients committed to building high-performance organisations. His first career was as an RAF pilot. He graduated as top cadet of his officer training and went on to fly the Tornado F3, an air defence fighter aircraft. Justin took part in both training and operational deployments all over the world, including in UN peacekeeping operations in Bosnia and was subsequently selected for the Red Arrows, where he performed over 250 displays worldwide including 3 international tours. He was Executive Officer, responsible for operational day-to-day management of the team, a hand-picked group of 9 elite pilots and 90 support personnel.