The ambition and potential of Jharcraft in Ranchi is overwhelming. In order to keep up the pace, a dedicated Women on Wings team including co-founder Ellen Tacoma and expert Ronald van het Hof is keeping its finger on the pulse. Over 100,000 women work on 31 various crafts and, along with Women on Wings, Jharcraft is working on its ambitious target of realizing 15% more jobs this year.
At the start of May, Ellen and Ronald met with all of Jharcraft’s management in Ranchi. The vital issue this time was working as a team and creating “ownership” and “accountability” in the organization. Jharcraft also faces two urgent challenges: dealing with old stock and preventing an accumulation of new stock.
Women on Wings facilitates an interactive workshop with the wider management, which consists of roughly 25 people. The ingredients for the workshop were prepared in the Netherlands with expert Miranda Noordenbos. The workshop began in the stock warehouse, showing participants what it means to work in a product-focused way and in doing so to prevent more stock accumulation. The workshop then moved to a meeting room and Women on Wings gave a presentation about the aims of the day and developments in retail (Retail 3.0), while participants were asked to think about what this means for Jharcraft.
Ellen: “The effect of collaboration and taking responsibility came over really well in a game in which the participants had to build a house made of cards. They had a huge amount of positive energy and drive to win in this and the next couple of teamwork tasks. It was educational for the participants to see and experience what happens in such a growth process. The move to market-focused working only works if the entire management team sees its joint responsibility and assumes this in relation to the challenges that lay ahead.”
Ronald: “We asked a group think about the high volume of bracelets in stock. Everyone was hugely surprised about the inventive and creative solutions that the group came up with in just a quarter of an hour. They didn’t know that teamwork could be so much fun and so effective. There is now a SMART plan in place following the ideas for the bracelets and also a SMART top 5 following other sessions. In the evaluation, interpersonal contact scored very highly; that’s not something that happens very often. We already have an owner, a stated output and a deadline. Now they just have to get to work!”