Bespoke management development

Leading Into the Future

A bespoke management development programme at London Gatwick

The Client

As a consequence of the pandemic, investment in development for managers at London Gatwick had stalled as the organisation focussed on financial survival. As the airport recovers and grows to surpass pre-COVID levels of activity, the profile of management has changed to a mixture of experienced and newer first-level people leaders. There was a desire to invest in these key leaders, recognise the important role they play and work with them to increase engagement across the workforce. As a first step, the airport introduced an internal leadership framework which had yet to be supported with dedicated development interventions or operationalised in the front-line environment.


  • London Gatwick identified a need to support the development of their first-level people leaders and provide greater consistency in their approach.
  • As the airport continues to recover, adapt and grow post-COVID, London Gatwick commissioned Affinity to design and implement a new, bespoke leadership development programme that would be suited to the busy operational environment and well received by operational managers. The programme considered leadership behaviours, engagement and wellbeing.


An evidence-based approach was taken to the design and implementation of a two-day leadership development programme. This included:

  • An in-depth familiarisation phase involving on-site focus groups, job-shadowing and a review of organisational frameworks and data to inform the design of the tailored solutions.
  • Designing and delivering to approximately 200 front-line managers a two-day training intervention, based on mapping the leadership framework to relevant psychological models and techniques as well as incorporating mental health and wellbeing content as identified as a need by managers during familiarisation.
  • Creating a 180° feedback tool based on London Gatwick's leadership framework, using meaningful language identified in the familiarisation stage and aligned with the Management Competencies for Preventing and Reducing Stress. Delegates and their colleagues completed this tool prior to their training days with personalised feedback reports from this tool forming part of the training programme.


Feedback on the course was collected from delegates after the two-day sessions. 97% of delegates provided feedback. Ongoing refinement of the programme content and delivery was undertaken throughout based on delegate feedback to allow more time for areas delegates felt were most useful.

Feedback received on the programme content was extremely positive:

  • 94% of delegates said that they had learnt tools and strategies to help them deliver results.
  • 94% of delegates said that they had learnt tools and strategies to help them set a clear purpose.
  • 95% of delegates said they had learnt tools and strategies to help them engage and energise their team and others.
  • 94% of delegates said the programme content was relevant to their roles and needs.

Feedback received on the programme delivery was also extremely positive:

  • 99% of delegates said content was delivered clearly
  • 99% of delegates said the facilitators made the learning content accessible and practical
  • 98% of delegates said the facilitators created a safe, trusting and open environment
  • 98% of delegates said the pace of the programme was appropriate.

Excellent training - better than anything that I have previously been on. Very informative and delivered in a refreshing and informative manner by 3 people who clearly know their stuff.

Best leadership training we have done. Have bought our framework alive better than we as a company have. Well done.

I really loved the facilitators. The course felt fresh and modern and it was clear real thought had gone into it. It created a safe space and focussed on the importance of wellbeing. It was one of the best courses I've been on.

Affinity's understanding of Gatwick is integral to delivering the course content so that it has most relevance to us. The activities and tasks were well balanced with the listening and learning elements. I have thoroughly enjoyed the 2 days.

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