Chapter 14 Bupa Case Study

Bupa is one of the world’s leading health and care organisations, with more than 32 million customers in 190 countries. In 2014, the company had grown considerably in size due to several acquisitions, doubling their workforce from 40 000 employees to 80 000.

Each newly acquired company brought with it a different culture, set of values and vision. So late in 2014, Lizzy Geremia, Head of Internal Communications at Bupa Australia and New Zealand, alongside her global internal communications colleagues, was tasked with launching a completely new set of Bupa shared values and embedding them throughout the organisation.

The challenge

This was not your everyday revamp of values. The task was to consolidate a diverse set of values from across all the acquired companies throughout the world.

The Bupa executive team had chosen seven core values that supported their well-known purpose: ‘Helping people live longer, healthier, happier lives’.

Bupa’s seven global values were:

  1. Passionate
  2. Caring
  3. Open
  4. Authentic
  5. Accountable
  6. Courageous
  7. Extraordinary

As a professional communicator, Lizzy’s first reaction was, ‘What about three values, maybe four, but not seven?’

She questioned the number with Dean Holden, Australian and New Zealand Managing Director, who was part of the global group who determined the values, and very passionate about them. He said, ‘Lizzy, success for me isn’t that everyone can tell me what the seven values are; success for me is that I can see ...

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