What we’ve learned from a couple of Managers….


In 2009 we had a European PEP® trainers conference in Kiev hosted by Oleg, our man in the Ukraine.

As is the norm at our conferences, Oleg had invited a client to speak about his experiences with PEP® in his company.

The client speaker was the CEO of the BNP Paribas bank in the Ukraine. Oleg had PEP®’d the majority of the employees in the bank and the CEO was very pleased with the results.

However, this was 2009, the recession had come, and it had hit the Ukraine particularly hard.

I had a question for the CEO:

“Now that you have had first-hand experience in your company broadly implementing the PEP® Program how would you recommend we sell it to other companies in a recession environment? I mean budgets for external trainers and consultants are cut, companies are looking for ways to save money. What should we do?”


“The very first thing you should do is to create a waste audit.”


He was right of course. Eliminating waste and increasing productivity in an individual and in a group is what we have done since 1984. What we lacked was a good tool to measure it.

Shortly thereafter I found myself training a group from a major Dutch oil company that had just announced that they would be laying off 3,000 people. Not unexpectedly one of the participants said, “because so many of our colleagues are being laid off, your job must be to see to it that the work still gets done, but now with less people.”

I understood his anxiety: although people were being made redundant, the work still needed to get done. Their fear was that they would be overloaded with work.

However, there is also waste. One person worked part time for an insurance company while studying and was told not to work so hard because it made his colleagues look bad. Another example is a colleague, Cathy, who worked as an interim at an IT company. She took a job previously done by two people and did it easily by herself with no problem.

Wouter, a Personnel Manager in a German multinational, explained the following to me:

“A company is like a wagon. 20% of the employees pull the wagon along, 75% sit in the wagon and 5% hang off the back with their heels in the sand trying to slow or stop the progress of the wagon.”

This made me realize that we never get the heel dragging 5% in the PEP® training. We usually get the 20% who pull the wagon. These employees often find themselves working long hours just to get the job done. They often ask for help and helping them is our speciality. You can in fact increase productivity while lowering perceived workload pressure and stress.

We have, for the past several years, been measuring this with our before and after survey. We call it the Personal Work Profile (PWP) and it is a survey based on the perception of the participants. Perception?

Analysing the results in our database you see a pattern emerging. When a person has a good overview of what they need to do and when, they feel that they are in control. No lurking problems in an overfull InBox, no dropped balls, no missed deadlines because, well “sorry….. I forgot.”

Perception is how a person feels, now if they feel good about their job, you have a motivated and productive employee. 80% of those completing the PEP® training state that the major benefit from the training is a “calm state of mind”, and that comes from control.

When each individual in a team fills in the PWP, it gives a complete picture of how that team functions. This allows you to identify the main issues within that team; where bottlenecks lie, where time is wasted, and importantly where most energy is spent. All of which are issues that need to be addressed.

This is then your waste audit.

If you are interested in a snapshot of your team or group’s efficiency, contact us here. The individual survey results are confidential and only the total score is shared with your group.



Eric Magnusson

Managing Partner PEP® worldwide Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.


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