daa: the Culture Hackathon

  • Leadership development
  • In-person product

The Culture Hackathon

Dublin Airport Authority (daa) has the vision of being an airport industry leader with operations in four continents and over 4,000 employees. 

The challenge

daa saw that they had an opportunity to improve employee engagement and activate their vision. They were ready to deliver a new standard of leadership that would energise teams to create an even better customer experience and grow their business. They were open to new ways of thinking and knew that they needed a solution quickly.

daa: man speaking at event

The solution

We started by co-creating a new leadership model with the Executive Team but it would need buy in from all managers if they were to live the new leadership standard every day.

 So, we came up with a programme that brought together the processes used for product and technology development (Design Thinking) with the latest thinking on neuroscience and cognitive behavioural therapy. We called it “The Culture Hackathon”. 

  • daa: man and woman smiling at work
  • daa: woman smiling at work

Making it work for daa

We took 80 leaders away for two days to imagine and design ways to improve engagement in their business. We asked them to look at the engagement challenges through the eyes of their employees and understand why it was so important.

daa: employees working around a desk

Against the clock, teams brainstormed ideas and pitched them to each other until they found a winning formula to engage teams and activate their vision.  They then pushed their prototype ideas further, developing a set of ‘Big Behaviours’, and finally testing them out with their people

  • woman presentation in front of people
  • nkd facilitator in front of participants at daa hackathon

The result

For daa this meant 80 leaders all adopting the same new mindsets to develop great teams that are ready for tomorrow. It meant 80 leaders respecting and inspiring others, delivering results and shaping the future together. 

In the first 6 weeks after the event, they saw so much positive change that they decided to get to keep the momentum going and bring the next 90 leaders through the Culture Hackathon… and then the next 120 leaders.

The first engagement survey since The Culture Hackathons has seen leadership scores increase by 10% overall