This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
Glasgow Business . 21 www.glasgowchamberofcommerce.com


ScotRail Alliance Managing Director Phil Verster on having a mission statement that you work to make a reality


A SIMPLE, CLEAR VISION CAN TRANSFORM A BUSINESS


I


t is vital for businesses to have a clear idea of what their mission is and that it can be stated simply and in a few words. Tat is a strong belief of Phil Verster,


Managing Director of the ScotRail Alliance who gave a well-atended Glasgow Talk in March. “If your business can’t give in five or six


words what your business is about then you’re in trouble as a business,” he told the audience at the Blythswood Hotel. He said that ScotRail’s mission was to:


‘Deliver 125 million customer journeys by 2025.’ Mr Verster said that there were many


strands to delivering that, but that was the mission which he was trying to make a reality and that was shared across the whole of the ScotRail business rather than “just being management speak”.


KEY TO DELIVERING THAT WERE:


• Customers have great journey experiences • We offer products that our customers value • Increasing our customer choices • Our customers trust us and know that we listen


It was absolutely central to delivering on that mission statement that middle managers in his organisation made the right decisions, he said. “Te real thing about running a business


right is making quality decisions,” he said. He said that what he questioned himself on was whether he had given his team the right kind of direction to enable them to make quality decisions.


THIS WAS SUPPORTED BY FIVE PRINCIPLES:


• Customer care first • We improve what we do • Run a service that is safe and punctual • We are one team • We treat money as if it’s our own


He said that one thing that he did every week was to travel on a train and to announce who he was and then go up and down the train geting comments from the customers whether complaints or praise. Mr Verster said that he encouraged all his


managers to do the same in their parts of the business. He said that really listening to what


customers had to say and, if possible, making small changes to improve the service from the points made by customers. On the work on the Queen Street Tunnel


which is disrupting travel from the station, Mr Verster said: “It’s painful but it’s a once-in-50-years investment in the tunnel at Queen Street.” He pointed out that the work was part of a


major investment programme in rail that was greater than any other part of the UK. “Tree years from now Scotish railways will be transformed in terms of investment,” he said.


He said that Abellio is investing £475


million in new trains and that £750 million is being invested in the Edinburgh Glasgow Improvement Programme. Mr Verster said that he had been a student


leader at Stellenbosch University, a traditional stronghold of the apartheid system, when they had called for change in South Africa and in particular the freeing of Nelson Mandela. He said that the “small part” they had


played in changing the apartheid system had shown him that small changes could bring about major transformations.


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52