Interserve’s Culture of Innovation

Interserve is one of the world’s foremost support services and construction companies. Their vision is to redefine the future for people and places. Interserve launched a programme of work focused on enhancing the culture of innovation within the company. They decided the way to succeed in this new approach was to gain more experience from outside Interserve about how other people are doing things

Interserve’s Culture of Innovation

"Everything KnowledgeBrief are doing is helping Interserve move towards the cultural place we want to be. Everything I learn at KnowledgeBrief is fed back into our programme"

The KnowledgeBrief Innovation Programme:

  • Has changed how meetings and training sessions are run
  • Is helping Interserve to achieve the required result of cultural shift
  • Is now a part of the attendee’s personal learning and development programme


Steve has been tasked with leading a group who are working to change the culture of innovation at Interserve. Being responsible for such a vital, yet fairly intangible, task meant support from outside Interserve was required to guarantee the success of this programme. “Our organisation is incredibly diverse (construction, cleaners, teachers, etc), so we don’t have a one size fits all approach”, says Steve.

Faced with the challenge of changing the culture of innovation in such a large and diverse organisation meant Steve immediately saw the benefit of the Innovation Programme. “At Interserve we believe every colleague should have the ability to participate in the development of ingenious and innovative solutions for the benefit of both our clients and ourselves.” The nature of the KnowledgeBrief Innovation Programme is to help industry leaders stay ahead of the game by applying new ideas in business, which Steve has seen the benefits of since joining.

How the Programme Helped

Steve required an environment that forced him to question how he traditionally did things, in a way that would ultimately help him to succeed in changing the culture at Interserve. “To the degree that it’s helped to inform our innovation programme, which is then impacting on how innovation is developed and perceived around the business, then it’s definitely had a direct impact”.

Recognising that the biggest impact has been influencing some of their thinking as a programme team, Steve has also seen hugely positive results as far as his own personal development is concerned: “Me personally, it has had a big impact. I always walk away thinking of something different to when I walked into the room. For example, the session entitled “Build Your Personal Knowledge Infrastructure” was a real moment when I realised I didn’t have it quite as balanced as I thought I had. So I always take something away from it that makes me much more self-aware”.

Developing on this point, Steve commented “KnowledgeBrief attract interesting and thought provoking speakers, and the Innovation Day itself feels like a really safe environment to speak quite openly with people from other businesses, and you get this sense quickly when you join the programme. Chatham House rule applies clearly. You don’t feel that there is any risk in having these frank conversations.”

Results, Return on Investment and Future Plans

Steve knows that joining the Management Innovation Programme has helped him to be more successful in working towards achieving his objective, tailoring the way he speaks, leads and presents to the business. “Everything KnowledgeBrief are doing is helping Interserve move towards the cultural place we want to be. Everything I learn at KnowledgeBrief is fed back into our programme team, helping inform our thinking, so it is definitely helping us achieve that result of cultural shift.”


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