Welcome to the Jigsaw VAE Blog

Jigsaw VAE works with organisations to help them develop an organisational growth mindset.

When entire companies embrace a growth mindset, employee engagement, innovation and performance soars. Jigsaw will help you to see that individual behaviour, team behaviour and leadership behaviour can be observed, measured and improved over time.

Using psychometric testing tools we capture and share information on levels of transformational leadership behaviour, employee engagement, psychological safety and team learning within the organisation.


Jigsaw VAE's original Lean Mindset research and workshop won the inaugural Lean Business Ireland award for Contribution to Lean Knowledge in 2018. This research supported the hypothesis that leadership behaviour and the team climate they create can influence and predict the level of employee engagement.

In the coming weeks, Jigsaw VAE will post a series of articles based on the findings of this research….


The Climate & Culture for Innovation & Lean Thinking

Successful implementation of Lean requires more than just the application of tools and techniques, it is essential that the leadership and teams have a desire and a willingness to change.  Great leadership, team engagement, and a climate of learning is necessary to achieve this, factors that are often overlooked during Lean initiatives.

If we look at the top 10 Reasons why Lean fails, we can see that 7/10 are down to people.


  1. Lack of top management support
  2. Lack of communication
  3. Lack of middle management/supervisor buy-in
  4. Not understanding that this is about your people
  5. Lack of customer focus
  6. Lack of improvement measures
  7. Lack of LEAN leadership
  8. People measures not aligned with LEAN goals
  9. Using Kaizen events as the sole improvement mechanism
  10. Bonus pay systems where the only measure is company profitability

Research has shown that not only do Lean organisations have better leadership and higher employee engagement but that the quality of both predict the success of the initiative.  Investing in Lean cannot be just about tools, organisations must also invest in creating the culture and climate for sustainable change. But how?


The People Pyramid

The people in the process are made up of individuals and leaders, and then how they interact in teams.  The main variables at play are leadership behaviour, individual employee engagement, and the climate within the team for learning, innovating, and performing.  For many organisations, these are intangible and difficult to measure but using psychometrics and team development, these can be measure and improved upon add even greater value to any continuous improvement initiative.

The People Measures

Employee Engagement is a “positive, fulfilling, work related state of mind” and engaged employees are happier, more productive and tend to stay with employers for longer.

They are passionate about and dedicated to their work and are promoters of the company to clients and other potential employees.  In addition, it has been found that engaged employees generate Discretionary Effort, that is the difference between what we can do and what we do-do, and they are intrinsically motivated to do this. According to Gallup, this could be worth as much as 20% in terms of productivity.

Team climate is measured by assessing Psychological Safety, a climate in which individuals feel safe for interpersonal risk taking, without fear of judgement.  This allows for greater team efficacy and learning.

Leadership is best assessed on a spectrum and we do this using the Full Range Leadership model.  This model gives us 9 leadership behaviours that can be measured and modeled or avoided.

Transformational Leadership is the ability to provide shared values and a vision for the future for the work group.  This is achieved through 4 behaviours:

Idealised Influence: involves inspiring followers to achieve goals beyond their self-interests, being a positive role model and creating a vision that is perceived worthy of effort.  These leaders are respected and admired by subordinates.

Individualised Consideration involves paying attention to the needs and concerns of followers, developing and helping the follower to grow by promoting learning, and being concerned with the individual.

Intellectual Stimulation is the creation of curiosity and innovation within the teams, challenge the norms and traditional ways of doing things and eliciting follower input.

Inspirational Motivation is the arousing and inspiring of followers with a clear and articulate vision which the follower wants to achieve

Transactional Leadership is based on some transaction, such as exchanging money for work.  This is modelled in 2 behaviours:

  • Contingent reward: is where leaders agree with followers the tasks to be completed and clearly articulate performance expectations in exchange for rewards.
  • Management by exception is a corrective form of leadership and measures the extent that a leader intervenes with the follower.
  • Active is when the leader seeks out errors or issue in the output and then acting
  • Passive is the leader waiting for things to go wrong before becoming active.

The Impact

Lean organisation score significantly higher in Transformational leadership, Employee Engagement, and Team Learning culture.  Moreover, they predict the success of that change initiative.


What you can do?

  • Consider the impact your culture and people competencies have on change initiatives.
  • Invest in Leadership & Team Development
  • Create a climate of engagement
  • Develop a culture with innovation & continuous improvement is the norm.


What we do?

Jigsaw VAE work with organisations to develop an “Organisational Growth Mindset”.  Our clients are successful businesses, we work with them to harness their existing strengths & talents to drive improvement.  We measure, assess, and develop the people in your organisation.

The Jigsaw VAE Culture & Climate Benchmark, Roadmap & Coach led program delivers on the key pillars of organisational growth mindset: leadership, individuals, & teams


Our culture and climate assessment and development complements Lean initiatives and have an exponential effect on their impact and sustainability.

Contact Us today to discuss a Culture & Climate Health check for your organisation



+353 (0)868592524

Kilcullen, Ireland


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