Jayne’s Corp | Case Study
In 1946, Jayne’s began as a concrete company in Albuquerque, New Mexico focusing on driveways and sidewalks. After spending 25 years expanding their construction capabilities and service offerings, Jayne’s entered the general contracting world. Since that move, the company has invested countless resources into growing their people, investing in new skills and technologies, and introducing innovative services that change the way construction is done across their entire community.
And while the company has changed a lot in the last 70 years, the foundation remains the same: “to build great buildings and people, to lead project teams and our communities, and to grow our company and our resources.” If anything, Jayne’s has doubled down on their commitment, as this case study will soon attest. Whether it is on the job site or with community leaders, Jayne’s is committed to building facilities that support community success while nourishing a company culture that gives more to its people, its clients, and its partners.
In 2013, Jayne’s leadership suspected there was a problem. After taking stock of their leadership pipeline across all four offices, the company realized it either didn’t have the right people in the right place, or hadn’t prepared their people with the right skills and leadership capabilities to fulfill their own vision of internal success.
Unafraid to take responsibility, Shad James, President and COO, and his key leaders owned the results of their analysis as people failures that ultimately rest with the leadership team.
So, the executive team met in 2013 to develop a vision for the company in the year 2020. They kick-started their time of reflection by asking each office management staff a series of simple, but powerful questions:
- If you were gone tomorrow, who would be your replacement?
- If you were gone 3 years from now, who would be your replacement?
- What role would they take?
- What would they need (resources, training, etc.) to become better leaders?
As a former executive of a general contracting company, Maria was uniquely attuned to the struggles Jayne’s faced. She quickly identified and refined the company’s understanding of the problem before laying out a path to transformation. Due to the leadership capacity constraints, Jayne’s was experiencing a shortage of leaders who could “come off the bench” and step out from behind their own leaders, ready to go and take on the challenge of driving the company into the future.
“Building the bench” of capable leaders requires a highly intentional process of leader development. Jayne’s had always developed strong leaders – it has been a highly successful company for three-quarters of a century. However, the process of development was more accidental, less focused, and took too long to reliably keep the leadership pipeline full of capable, ready-to-go leaders who could keep up with the demands of the company’s rapid expansion.
That’s where Maria was able to step in with GiANT’s much-needed system of intentional development: Know. Lead. Multiply.
- Know: First, leaders must engage in a process of self-awareness, seeking first to know themselves and their own tendencies better before they can lead themselves more effectively
- Lead: Once you have a deeper understanding of yourself and the way others operate, you can apply your knowledge to the situations, relationships, and teams that matter to you.
- Multiply: The key to lasting, wide-reaching transformation is the ability to multiply your own skills and leadership capacity into the people who will take your place. This requires the process of intentional, dedicated apprenticeship.
We were able to provide Jayne’s with a carefully designed ecosystem of tools, processes, and methods by which to expand and speed up the process of leader development. This included introducing a common leadership language, helping employees and leaders to understand themselves, and equipping a whole group of people to share that experience together for the sake of cultural and leadership transformation.
Another key component to success is the fact that in the GiANT system, personal growth does not happen individually, or in a vacuum. The experience is company-wide. It makes a difference when the tools, language, systems, and processes are calibrated with just the right balance of simplicity and depth to be both deeply personal as well as easily scalable and sharable with the rest of the organization. With that combination, you don’t have just one person learning and growing on their own, but several people on a team working it out together, holding each other accountable, and using the language to help identify, process, and address live leadership and relational issues as they arise. The end result of such a process is a healthier, more energized, and more effective company.
As a result of their hard work and commitment to the process, the entire culture within Jayne’s has changed. Now, they are not only building better leaders with a higher degree of self-awareness, relational health, and capacity, they are leading themselves and coaching themselves without Maria’s help. The language, tools, and systems have permeated Jayne’s culture so deeply, that the culture has developed its own DNA as an independently functioning, self-sustaining organism.
The greatest mark of transformation always comes not from the noticeable changes at work, but from the personal transformation experienced on an individual level at home. It’s no exaggeration to say that lives were changed. Marriages were impacted. And relationships with children were transformed. The changes at Jayne’s runs deeper than the organizational level, but instead has struck a chord on the personal level.
What we at GiANT are after is transformation in people’s lives, not just for themselves, but for the sake of impacting their families, and their team, as well as the organization. Eventually, change of such magnitude ripples out to impact the wider community as a whole. What we want to see that transformation create in the leader is a deeper consistency of character and action. An intentionality in who they are that permeates every circle of influence in their life. When change touches every relationship they have, that’s when you know it’s become a part of who they are, and not just the way they’re behaving at work. That’s when you know the changes today are going to last for a lifetime.