British Telecom Service Delivery
British Telecom Service Delivery specifically
  • Challenge our leaders to work across teams and functions
  • Engender a 'Service Manufacturing Ethos' throughout the business
  • Develop our ability to 'Lead in Uncertainty'

The Brief

The top 30 leaders in BT Service Delivery were entering a period of restructuring, merger and transformation.  Our challenge was to equip them with the capability to lead the organisation through the change whilst managing high levels of organisational and personal uncertainty.

The resulting Leading in Uncertainty Programme combined a series of Resilient Leaders' Workshops with one to one coaching.  We aimed to build individual confidence and capability whilst creating a leadership community that was open and honest, engaged and dynamic.

The Outcome

The Programme delivered measurable growth in four aspects of participant's leadership: Awareness, Leadership Presence, Clarity of Direction and Resilient Decision Making.  Each leader built a customised personal development plan that delivered growth in a highly focused way.  

Qualitative feedback from participants showed that this programme helped them to deliver millions of pounds worth of efficiencies through effective leadership, communication and decision making at a critical time.  This gave a great return on investment and ensured leaders were anticipating and acting on opportunities and threats, more able to manage pressure and stress, more confident, focused and authentic.

Participant's Comments

“This programme has helped me stand up for what I believe to be best for the business“

“As a result I have managed the challenging period much better with my team – ensuring that we and I stayed focussed on what we needed to deliver, whilst being honest about our situation and dealing with the uncertainty”

“Now when we make a decision and the situation changes, I have the confidence to change direction, no longer seeing this as a weakness”

“I have learned to listen more and talk less; to trust my instincts which are more as often right, but also to take more time to consider facts and impact before launching into action!”

Queens University Post Graduate Centre
Queens University Post Graduate Centre specifically
  • Differentiate our post-graduates from people of equal academic merit
  • Produce the next generation of Resilient Leaders for Northern Ireland and beyond

The Brief

Queen's University Belfast is a member of the Russell Group of 24 leading UK research-intensive universities, providing world-class education underpinned by world-class research.
Post Graduate Training Centre were keen to develop the Leadership skills of their PhD students, in order to support their employability and in so doing support the future economy of Northern Ireland and the United Kingdom.
Their existing Leadership Programme was not attracting sufficient numbers of students and they were concerned that it was having limited impact in relation to the day to day leadership behaviour of participants.
Through this new programme Queens wants to become the Russell Group University whose post-graduates are renowned for their leadership capability as well as their academic achievement.

The Outcome

'Through a combination of facilitation and professional advice Sunray Seven supported me to envision the future of the programme. They provided support for my ideas together with a healthy degree of challenge! They built my confidence that we could deliver an enhanced programme to our PhD Students and we have now designed and delivered two of the resulting 'Leading Your PhD' Courses. 

We have also linked the programme with the Level 5 in Leadership and Management as awarded by the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM). Sunray Seven have helped us to ‘dove-tail’ the requirements of the Certificate with the content of the programme and we are now the first University in the UK to provide this to PhD students. 

The result has been fantastic! The programme has received excellent feedback on both occasions but more importantly we have testimonials from students which directly evidence the application of their learning and the benefits to both their PhD’s and their careers. Below are some typical pieces of feedback.  

On a personal level I now manage a programme that I am confident will bring significant benefits to our students in the long-term and feel proud and I and my team are contributing to future leadership capacity with Northern Ireland.'
Heather McGregor, Senior Postgraduate Officer, Queens University 

Participant's Comments 

‘Attending the ‘Leading your PhD’ course and getting feedback from the Resilient Leader’s Assessment, mentors, and peers has helped me focus on the areas that I would like to improve on in order to become a more effective team member and team leader. This has also helped me focus more on which careers are appealing to me, and would suit my leadership style.  I have also taken on board feedback from my peers as a result of this, and am aiming to improve on weak areas highlighted to me.’

2nd Year student, School of Pharmacy

‘This has already had a hugely positive impact on my PhD, because I am more confident and working more productively in every aspect of my studies.  The ‘Leading your PhD’ training has already proved to be very beneficial to my career.  Since completing the training in Feb 2013 I have: taken part in a facilitators training course and was subsequently selected from the group to work on a paid project; applied to and have been accepted to speak at two conferences, and embarked on two new collaborative artistic projects as part of my PhD work, for both of which I have a directing role.’

2nd Year student, School of Sonic Arts

‘The activities I took part in during the ‘Leading your PhD’ course confirmed my personal goals with a practical insight into an environment where I could lake a genuine contribution to society.  From coaching sessions to practical activities and reports, the complete ILM Leadership and Management qualification and its expert trainers offer the optimum resources that will help me pursue my goals with clarity, determination and passion.’

3rd Year student, School of Creative Arts

‘I feel that the three day Leading your PhD course has supported me immensely as within a few days of completing the course I was invited to attend an interview which consisted of questions and an intense role play.  After the course I felt much more prepared and I was successful in gaining the job position of locum therapist!’

1st Year student, School of Sociology, Social Work and Social Policy

Avanti Recruitment
Avanti Recruitment specifically
  • Drive to 'agressively' grow the business
  • Structured processes and procedures that enabled growth
  • People to develop the attributes of Resilience and Commitment

The Brief

Avanti Recruitment provides specialised, permanent and contract recruitment services to the Engineering, IT, Sales and Digital sectors.  2013 was the start of their aggressively growing the company and structuring internal processes and procedures to enable this growth.  Their company AGM kickstarted this process and they wanted a motivational speaker who would add value to the vision the MD was laying out for the years moving forward.  They wanted a person from the highest calibre and someone with amazing life experiences.

Sunray 7 provided an ex-SAS officer (Bill) to talk around his leadership and life experiences. In addition we worked with key individuals to identify their leadership strengths and areas for development.

The Outcome

Our work helped reinforce the key messages that the MD made to staff when outlining his vision for the future.  In addition we helped make expicit the competencies that people would need to develop in order to deliver that vision.


"The feedback from the AGM was very positive from all my staff.  They felt motivated and energised for the year ahead and are still referring to the work they did with Bill.  From a strategic point of view, my business partner and myself use the day and the key messages it enforced as a tool for a better/more focussed performance from our staff"

Barclays specifically
  • Create an innovative final stage in our selection process
  • Incorporate our values and principles
  • Help our staff to really know the candidate before they arrive in post

The Brief

Barclays Retail Bank wanted an innovative, final stage selection process for their future leaders that gave more control and ownership to the candidate, built trust and encouraged openness and left them in a better place even if they were unsuccessful.    

We built a process based on Sunray Seven's Resilient Leaders' Elements that incorporated Barclay's values and principles and that aimed to increase candidate inclusion, control and openness.

The Outcome

The selection process was better informed; breaking down and challenging the more formulaic model of the ‘them and us’ interview. The interviewer gained a deeper insight into candidates’ capabilities and potential whilst candidates felt a greater sense of control. 

Overall the new process provided a more accurate and revealing picture of the candidate because they felt ‘seen and heard’

The manager of the graduate training programme reported striking changes in the way that the graduates came together so that they seemed to have a great deal in common before they’d even started in the job!


"Previously there was friction between new graduates and existing shop floor staff in our branches. Now our branches feel empowered to chose their graduates and feel they know them as people before they arrive.”

FormerDirector Graduate Recruitment, Barclays Retail Bank


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