Customer stories
26 Apr 2023

The discovery of PAM’s new organisational and leadership culture

The Service Union United PAM hoped for a clear change in their leadership and organisational culture. There was a need to find a new and fresh approach that would stand out from previous development projects and would have broad impact. PAM chose to partner with Hanken & SSE Executive Education to achieve its goals.


Hannamari Kuosa, Programme Director and Certified Coach, Hanken & SSE Executive Education

Heidi Lehikoinen, Executive Director, PAM

Katja Noro, Occupational Safety Representative, PAM

Last year we worked with PAM to develop their organisational and leadership culture. In the video, we discuss the journey and what happened at PAM as a result of the development process.

What was the starting situation like?

Heidi Lehikoinen: As a trade union, we are experts in working life and strive daily to improve working life in the private sector. And this is precisely why we have a particular need to be a good workplace and work community, and we have been working towards this for years. We also have many employees, all experts in their fields. This, of course, challenges us to be exceptional. Many of our employees see the problems in work communities and solve these problems together with members or elected officials. We wanted to refresh our leadership and organisational culture and redefine our organisational culture.

Hannamari Kuosa: We discussed fresh winds and what new things we could bring to the development process. We had joint workshops for management and supervisors as well as personal coaching. After the workshops, we had Go-to-Team tasks, meaning putting the things we had learned and agreed on together immediately into practice through organisational exercises.

How did the journey appear to the organisation and colleagues?

Katja Noro: It was new that our entire staff was involved. Our managers brought ideas from these development days to our units so that we could influence these things and be heard, and we also challenged some of the things that had been worked on during the development days. The enthusiasm of the managers was evident!

What kind of concrete tools did you get out of this?

Heidi Lehikoinen: The most visible tool was that we formed leadership principles that we worked on together with the managers, which our different units were able to challenge. These leadership principles have led, for example, to the renewal of the management system. We have always done employee surveys and 360 evaluations, but we decided to add additional levels to the employee survey to get broader responses on specific functions in the company structures. This year, we also conducted a quarterly employee pulse to monitor our change journey.

Hannamari Kuosa: We saw a change in the courage of discussions. Discussions became more open and straightforward, and things were no longer hidden. The included personal coaching also resulted in the strengthening of people. Of course, it supported the common language, and PAM's fundamental mission is reflected in everyday operations. We at Hanken & SSE also learned a lot from this journey.

Heidi Lehikoinen: As an exceptional organisation, our staff works with a big heart, and their work genuinely motivates them. The great joy and courage during the development process also inspired us.

How would you describe the coaching journey, looking back?

Heidi Lehikoinen: The journey felt mentally long and challenging because the goal was to bring up all the issues, and we realised that this wouldn't be possible unless we were ready, to be honest and bring everything up. As a result, I believe it will turn out well. Also, the partner's help greatly supported us in continuing the process.

Katja Noro: Initially, we in the staff were a bit sceptical because we have had similar projects before. Still, the coaching aspect of the development process inspired everyone, and we had a real chance to influence. This is also the first time we have an employer promise that we can trust and are really moving forward."

Through our development programmes and coaching, management teams and leaders renew themselves on an individual and a team level. While the team strengthens its capabilities, competence, and way of working, individual management team members build their own development plans as a leader. We combine development and group coaching methods, surveys, mapping, and self-assessment methods to support renewal. Learn more and contact us to discuss further.

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Hannamari Kuosa
Program Director
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