Client: Arup
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Project timeline: April 2005 to March 2008
Services provided: Workshop facilitation

From 2005 to 2008, Andrew Wisdom was consulting firm Arup’s Melbourne office leader. Andrew created a culture of success and enjoyment that saw the office flourish and become a benchmark for the firm.

On appointment, Andrew immediately set about re-energising a tired and dispirited Melbourne office and refocussed it on success and innovation by engendering a sense of ownership, creating pride in work and workplace and embracing a sense of fun.

Over a period of four years, Andrew created an environment in Arup’s Melbourne office that was seen globally as a benchmark for the firm. This involved two broad foci – ensuring office and employee support functions were delivered effectively and efficiently, and instituting a programme of engagement activities, ranging from a re-energised programme of cross-disciplinary social engagement through participation and engagement around Artbank to institution of a wildly popular internal awards programme that has been copied around the Arup world. The success of the programme was shown by the large turnaround in staff engagement, with high scores recorded in the firm’s regular global engagement survey, together with good outcomes in staff recruitment and retention. The Melbourne office became known as a place where people flourished intellectually and creatively.

Andrew drove the fit out of Arup’s Spring Street office that broke new ground in the design of the firm’s offices; facilitating collaboration and foreshadowed new ways of working. A programme of streamlining supporting office processes Andrew instituted, meant that the Melbourne office has become a prototyping lab for Arup’s 21st Century studios.