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Sapphire Group

Sapphire Group Pty Ltd are manufacturers of high quality fragrant products for home and personal use. Established in 2006, Sapphire Group brands have quickly become the market leader in the Home Fragrance category. All products are designed and made in Australia from only the highest quality ingredients and with the utmost skill and care.

The Sapphire Group’s hero brand is Glasshouse Fragrances. The company has enjoyed rapid growth since its’ inception in 2006, distributed in all major luxury retailers like David Jones and Peter Alexander.


Strategically they were faced with several competing and concurrent pressures


A Board desire to double the business


International Export division starting, with Glasshouse becoming a global brand


A move to a larger manufacturing site to lift productivity, culture and efficiency


A new system introduction with SAP


Several new members to the Leadership team


A desire to introduce a “raving fans” customer centred strategy

Being so busy coping with growth and change, they recognised they needed greater time, capability and focus on leadership as well as a considerable pipeline gap with no next level leaders ready to step up.


An 18 month leadership navigation roadmap was created to achieve their objectives;

1. Leadership Team Strategy

Our first task was to work with the CEO and facilitate a two day leadership team offsite workshop to help the leadership team align around their direction and strategy, create the desired culture, identify risks and barriers and an execution plan. We created an organisational compass from which the lead team can navigate.

2. Leadership Navigation Workshops

Our first task was to work with the CEO and facilitate a two day leadership team offsite workshop to help the leadership team align around their direction and strategy, create the desired culture, identify risks and barriers and an execution plan. We created an organisational compass from which the lead team can navigate.

Strategy and Culture Cascade

We needed to develop more robust tactical plans for each of the goals, cascade the compass departmentally and engage teams into the strategy, culture and create their own departmental plans to align with the Organisational compass. Each leader was provided with session plans to hold these themselves.

Leadership Expectations and Behaviour

To improve role clarity, confirm decision making accountability and agree on some core leadership standards we facilitated a leadership expectations and behaviour session to create a leadership framework that will enable the strategy and culture. This has an immediate benefit for “showing the way” for new members and also in reducing conflict with several existing members.

Leadership Pipeline

One of the leadership teams’ critical goals was to identify 2IC’s in each department, as there was a recognised gap below the leadership team, as the level of talent improved with each new hire. We facilitated a talent grid to identify and plot the high potential and performers. With only one person deemed to be ready we conducted a capability audit to identify the core capabilities that people needed training in.

Coaching Conversations

In order to create clarity of expectations, raise the bar, manage any interferences being experienced below, and keep people on track we ran a compressed session with leaders on setting up a system with some key tools to hold effective 1: 1 Coaching Conversations..

Leading Customer Centricity

In order to create raving fans and improve the process and experience for consumers and retail customers we facilitated a workshop process to clarify the organisational objectives for creating ravings fans, to identify the core needs from both segments and then map the service experience in order to create the organisational change and improvements required.

3. NextLevel Leadership Pathway™

Working with the accountable leader as sponsor Lighthouse recommended a NextLevel Leadership Pathway for the 14 high potentials. The program is built on four core capabilities that underpins the development priorities for them;

  1. Self Navigation
  2. Building Business Acumen
  3. Coaching Conversations
  4. Effective Communication

Each program has a work plan associated and is completed customised to align with the Strategy and Culture objectives and outcomes created in the Leadership Team Strategy and Leadership Navigation Workshops.

As a core leadership framework we use the NEWS model as a holistic and integrated method to build leadership capability to accelerate strategy and results.

The NEWS Framework, licensed exclusively by Lighthouse in Australia acts as the practical leadership roadmap to integrate leadership with strategy and culture. North represents Strategy and Direction, East represents Culture, values and behaviours, South represents growth and change and West represents execution and enablement.

There are a suite of programs to align each stakeholder group using the same NEWS compass and skills, tools and mindsets in each direction to support leaders to navigate the required change. In an ongoing way it then represents a clear way for leaders to navigate by assessing their current position, identifying changes and then operating the compass to navigate effectively.



An 18 month Leadership Navigation Roadmap was created to achieve their objectives;

All employees located on one site, with the new manufacturing facility

Culture rolled out with high degree of engagement

Stage 1 of SAP complete and now in early stages with Stage 2

Leadership team evolved to higher level with several new high calibre members

Reduced leader conflict through better role clarity and communication

Next level leaders identified and about to commence module 2 of the leadership pathway

Active CEO support to assist with necessary and ongoing course corrections

Supply Chain inefficiencies being addressed

Structural change to improve supply chain

Key Learnings

As identified in the leadership team strategy session, there was significant and substantive changes: Site, System, Structure, People, Culture all occurring within a Board expectation of a stretch revenue target. There has been a profit impact and readjustment with supply chain issues causing a chink in the result. This was not identified as a potential barrier, however on reflection there should have been a 20% allowance factor anticipated.

It would be interesting to see what the potential result might have been if the Leaders were not having monthly compass conversations to prioritise, identify interdependencies and proactively navigate the next turn.

 Regular CEO Coaching conversations has been a key factor in customising and meeting the leadership need of the time and helping the CEO move through the various challenges required along the journey.

We look forward to the next steps in the journey:

Next level leaders will complete their leadership pathway

New 3-5 year horizon strategy to be developed

Leadership Assessment and Development Plan

Connecting next level with lead team capability insights

Extension of leadership capability in target areas to progress the Organisation towards a leadership position in its market

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