BIA and PayFit co-designed a 4-month full-scale, multi-cohort, leadership development program for +100 Learners to upskill individuals, nurture change, and develop communities across the organization. Tailored to the hypergrowth context of the French unicorn scale-up, the program mixed traditional management basics with innovative New Work techniques. The journey included masterclasses, co-development workshops, group coaching, community sessions, peer networking, and gamification elements.
Enabling managers to thrive in hyper-growth scenarios
We had the pleasure to speak with Ysé de Saint Laurent about her personal growth and participation in BIA’s Manager Acceleration Program. She works as Talent Acquisition Manager at PayFit France for the French and global team. Coming from a previous position in which she hired junior profiles, Ysé now plays an important role in helping scale its hybrid business teams, hiring over ten talent acquisition specialists since she started at PayFit. She believes that this learning journey helped her strengthen her management skills, especially when hiring and supporting seniors in their own development, and helped her nourish cross-functional collaboration at PayFit.
PayFit France recently closed a new $289 Million Series E round. Its exponential growth led to not only a need for more structured workflows, but especially for new hires to keep workloads in check. The company prioritized the recruitment of seniors, as they needed more functional experts with in–depth knowledge and experience. This strongly impacted Ysé’s role in the company:
"When I arrived at PayFit there were three people on my team. Now there are thirteen. It was quite a challenge because in my old role I was used to hiring more junior profiles. This was different: now I had to hire more senior people and help them to develop themselves."
Here’s where BIA comes in with a learning journey, aimed to increase alignment and elevate the levels of employee fulfillment and cross-functional collaboration. BIA understood this scaleup’s unique context and created an approach that speaks to its hypergrowth reality. The key is the contextualization and the sense of empowerment to be transferred to the learner, as BIA’s founder and CEO Darius Moeini explains:
"A great leadership training is one that revisits the basics, rather than only covering modern and advanced topics. Through the nature of our work in management positions and the craziness of everything, what happens is that we slowly fall into routines and unlearn a lot of the things that we already knew. So we need to make sure that we constantly revisit our basic skills. That is why our learning journey is balanced with absolute fundamentals of management and leadership skills, such as coaching, conflict management, goal-setting, team motivation, effective delegation, decision-making, and change management."
Ysé took part in BIA’s learning journey and shared with us some of her thoughts about her experience:
"I had taken part in similar training sessions, but the coaches were not themselves experts in these particular topics. So BIA’s learning journey was more straightforward and tackled them deeper. I knew exactly why I needed this kind of training, and I had questions at the beginning that were answered by the end. Especially when it came to managing seniors and adapting my leadership style for individual needs."
Another highlight of the program, in Ysé's words, was the possibility to speak about these topics with other leaders from PayFit:
"We had peer coaching sessions and it was really interesting to see that some of them faced the exact same challenges as I did. It was an opportunity to see the bigger picture."
Peer sessions create a safe space where managers can have a type of exchange that doesn’t really happen in their day-to-day life. They unlock a conversational space they never had, leaving the operational detail level and upgrading to a bird’s eye view of the topic.
As for the learners' favourite modules, here's what Ysé had to say:
One module that stood out for everyone was that of OKRs. We had some training on this before, but PayFit keeps growing at a fast pace. I think it is very important for us to revisit these topics and set clear objectives, making sure we’re all going in the same direction. That is why this module was really important for everyone."
For every topic, participants were presented with concrete tools. Ysé says that it was something that had been missing previously and made an immediate impact:
"As soon as I came back to my day-to-day job I began to manage my team in a more structured way than I used to do before the BIA training program – thanks to sessions on OKRs, delegation, and coaching, for example."
Right away she had the opportunity to put into practice what she learned. It not only changed the way Ysé handled situations, but it gave her tools to coach others:
"I coached one of my team members on conflict and crisis management because she was having a difficult situation with a manager. It was really fulfilling to see her being able to handle the situation without me coming in between her and the other manager."
BIA’s goal is that leaders come together and start talking not only about the ‘what’ they do for work but about ‘how’ they work: organization design, project architecture, leadership practices, and team organization. Whether we are unlocking conversational space for collaboration or designing better workflows between functions – by optimizing the ‘how’ we can see drastic effects on the ‘what’. The ‘how’ improves business performance and makes organizations more future-proof, as managers become aware of how to evolve together with the company’s needs.
BIA’s Manager Acceleration Program provides this future-proofing by nurturing leadership awareness and skills. If you are interested in our leadership training program, get in touch with Anastasia Sukhomlinova.
PayFit revolutionizes and simplifies payroll and HR processes for European companies since 2016. Fast, intuitive and automated, PayFit allows employers to easily and independently manage payroll and human resources, saving them valuable time and allowing employees to access a dedicated online space. The company’s ambition is to support the digital transformation of human resources in companies through a 100% reliable SaaS solution that provides a unique experience for its users.