Design Team Harness NLP Business Techniques to Manage Major Changes in BT

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TodayÂ?s workplace provides daunting challenges and unique opportunities for individuals. To survive and ride the wave of changing markets, technologies and customer requirements managers needs to develop a wider set of skills, attitudes and competences. An employee, Richard Cullen at BT set out on his personal journey of transformation, a journey that has changed his outlook, developed his confidence and expanded his job potential.

BT is undergoing significant changes in search of best practice, which also involves major adjustment and re-definition of many off its staff roles. Its forward thinking approach to staff development is key to overcoming some of these problems of change.

Richard Cullen is a Solution Design Consultant in a team providing software solutions for large-scale BT projects. The most challenging is that of updating the BT network and IT infrastructure. “At first, I needed help to manage change from increased challenges and targets within my own area,” says Richard. He approached PPI Business NLP, a bespoke provider – as he believed that NLP could help him with personal change and development.

BT sponsored Richard’s introduction to the NLP modular practitioner course. The new skills he gained from this course helped him to deal with difficult, emotional and complex situations in a relaxed and less stressful way. In working in this way he gained the confidence to deal with each new challenge faced by his department.

“In absorbing NLP techniques I felt empowered to take on anything; where I’d lacked confidence, PPI’s business NLP training has given me the tools for a positive approach to any issue; I’d be driving home on a high,” says Richard. “I now control both how I choose to perceive a situation and my emotional state.

Richard continued his studies, over a two-year period for accreditation as a Master Practitioner choosing modules in leadership, executive coaching and influence. In consultation with his management and keen to pass on the benefits of NLP, he proposed to broaden his role by providing coaching support to others– this was readily accepted.

Richard’s role has now evolved and fifty per cent of his time is devoted to coaching, supporting around 50 Solution Design staff. His training enabled him to assist his workmates to limit negativity and to take an aware and objective view of interaction and negotiation.

“Initially, I saw NLP as a way of limiting errors during the massive changes we were undergoing,” says Richard. “Surprisingly, despite my technical background, I found my niche in helping colleagues overcome barriers and achieve their potential - this is very satisfying. A further benefit is that of helping them to develop a work-life balance.

BT’s investment in one person is paying dividends in effecting wider change to meet its goals. And its effect on that one person has been profound. Richard confirmed “NLP has made me aware of my internal processes, thoughts and direction in life. I now no longer believe that there’s anything I can’t do.”

Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) was introduced by Richard Bandler and John Grinder as a tool for personal development 30 years ago. It is continually assessing and developing frameworks for understanding attitudes, it models successful performers and provides techniques for improving thought processes and communications skills. Business NLP draws on these studies which can be used in different environments.

Clients of PPI Business NLP include Abbey, Accenture, ACCA, Argos, AstraZeneca, Barclay’s, Birmingham University, BT, BAe, Centrica, ODPM, the PM’s Strategy Office as well as the main public services.

PPI's website has had over 380,000 hits over the last four years demonstrating the interest in Business NLP. Further news releases are available from . Their monthly newsletter from goes out to over 3000 subscriber’s world wide. They will be running their NLP business practitioner seminar in California in the fall of 2005

The company operates under the strapline: 'The Business NLP provider of choice'.

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Michael Beale
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