KWH Mirka Ltd

KWH Mirka Ltd

As a result of Peili training, the Peili thinking has been used widely in the whole organization.

KWH Mirka manufactures and sells coated abrasives for demanding conditions. Mirka is a globally expanding company with ten subsidiaries located in Europe, North and South America and Asia. Headquarter and production are situated in Finland. More than 90 % of Mirka products are exported and sold in more than 80 countries. The company is constantly adapting to a changing world and has become a forerunner in this specialist area by placing a strong emphasis on product development. This development has been backed up by an effective production system and many decades of experience.

Product development is one of Mirka’s competitive edges, which is supported by an effective production system called Lean Production. As a fast growing company, in order to maintain this competitive edge, Mirka had a strong need for a responsive, adaptive, economic, and flexible production system, which can transfer Mirka from a traditional line organization to a lean-driven organization. Becoming a lean organization is the strategic decision for Mirka. The next step is to make the organizational change to happen.

Organizational change will not take place only if the employees respond to the change. For the employees, going through a change process usually means increased workload, stresses, and uncertainties, which implies the need of participative and encouraging styles of leadership, taking care of the employees’ morale, motivation and willingness of work. In the long run, a lean organization implies new working practices, which call for more team works and new management styles, particularly participative and encouraging styles of leadership are appreciated. During the change process, the role of managers and leaders has changed to guide and support the employees, from manage them as in a line organization.

Mirka invited Carola Lindholm, an experienced Peili trainer and Human Resource Development consultant, to join the organizational change process. Carola is responsible for the leadership development for Mirka as a lean organization. Carola introduced Peili Behavioural Profile to Mirka’s management team (includes top managers, middle managers, and team leaders) to develop their self-confidence and communication skills, to create a common language to speak about people and challenges in leadership, and to develop the skills on giving feedback and encouragement to subordinates.

The managers and team leaders of Mirka jointly participated in Peili trainings in the form of mixed group. Through the training, Mirka’s management team has increased the commitment to the change process of Mirka, as noticing every layer of company are actively involved in the change process. The managers and team leaders started to discuss their challenges in managing their subordinates or their team. Said by one manager: “now I understand why I have problems with one of my employees.” During the training, using Peili as a tool, the managers and team leaders developed their self-knowledge, increased their confidence as being who they are, and practiced how to interact with different people who have different behavioural styles, especially how to give feedback to subordinates in the way that they will appreciate.

As a result of Peili training, the Peili thinking has been used widely in the whole organization. Since the managers and team leaders participated in Peili training, they started to use Peili thinking to develop their own teams. For instances, Peili is used in the marketing team – a virtual team. Private consulting sessions have been held for individual managers, to assist the managers to develop themselves in a more specific manner.

One challenge Mirka had was that the top managers are mostly promoting style, their working pace is much faster than other three styles, which was a challenge for the organization to move forward together. After Peili has been introduced to Mirka, the top managers try not to speed up their working pace, so that the employees could follow the development progress.

Another result of Peili training in Mirka is that the company both the employees and the management team are pleased. Leadership style in Mirka helped building trust in the organization. Based on Peili training, a handbook called Leadership Manual is created as an internal guidebook for Mirka employees and managers.