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Grant Thornton and UK Athletics join forces to create leadership and coaching excellence

As the 2015 Rugby World Cup comes to an end, Britain’s eyes turn towards the next global sporting event to be held in the UK, the 2017 IAAF and IPC World Athletics Championships in London (London 2017).  Inspired by London 2017, Grant Thornton UK LLP and UK Athletics (UKA) have this weekend announced a new collaboration that will support coaching excellence and the creation of dynamic, high performance teams for both organisations.

The two organisations shall be working together on an on-going basis to develop a programme of mutually beneficial activity to take place over the next five years, with potential for the alliance to continue well beyond. 

The activity underpins Grant Thornton's vision of shaping a vibrant economy by unlocking potential for growth in dynamic organisations, as well as supporting UKA's ambition to aspire to excellence in everything it does. 

Over the next two years, in the run up to London 2017, Grant Thornton will help UKA review and improve practices in preparation for the delivery of the event by seconding some of its people to the organising team, challenging them to learn quickly in a short-term project environment and then bring those learnings back into the business. Individuals from Grant Thornton have already taken a number of secondment posts, with more positions to become available.  Grant Thornton is also supporting UK Athletics in enhancing their leadership and coaching programme by engendering a culture of trust and purpose that is imperative for high performance. 

In return, some of the UK's elite athletics coaches will work with Grant Thornton's leaders to instil a new way of working that ignites patterns of behaviour supporting growth and development.  UKA will also provide advice and guidance to Grant Thornton on the wellbeing of its people, and both organisations will work together to develop a programme of events before and during the games for its people, clients and other stakeholders such as local communities.

Kylie Roberts, Director of Leadership Development, Grant Thornton UK LLP, said: "We believe that insights into world-class coaching will help us on our journey to becoming a high-performance coaching organisation.  We have a vision to create a shared enterprise way of working and to do that our leaders need to be exceptional coaches and enablers.  We are partnering with UKA to work with us on coaching excellence and likewise we work with them to create high performing teams and a high performing organisation that can excel in a volatile, uncertain, ambiguous and complex world."

Niels de Vos, CEO of UK Athletics, said: “Our partnership with Grant Thornton is an exciting development that brings together business excellence and sporting excellence. A feature of great leaders in business and coaches in sport is the constant desire to learn and improve, this partnership will allow both sides to capture and share knowledge, in order to nurture and develop high performing individuals and teams.  We aim to create an environment that encourages peak performance and provides the opportunity to grow and progress in business and sport.   Grant Thornton shares our passion for athletics and our vision for the World Championships, their expertise will help us build an organising committee for London 2017 that will ensure the event delivers another spectacular success for Britain as a host of major sporting events.”