About Red Heart Blue Head
We specialise in helping organisational leaders build teams, develop people and create an empowering and collaborative culture. Our success comes from your success. We’re really passionate about what we do.
At Red Heart Blue Head, we really understand organisational culture. From years of experience, we know how to build a culture that empowers and drives an organisation, rather than weakens it. We are called Red Heart Blue Head because peak organisational performance comes from generating a deep, collective passion for an organisation’s mission; as well as the cool, calm-thinking to deliver it. Our business is about helping you to improve your organisation’s performance, to help you drive dynamic growth and to increase your winning. None of these are possible with misalignment, goals gaps or losing behaviours.
The Goals Gap
Every team and organisation has its own mission and goals to achieve. And yet each one of those organisations is made up of individual people with all of their different needs, wants and goals. There is therefore a likely ‘goals gap’ between every organisation and each of its people. Unless those gaps can be bridged, an organisation will operate with reduced people power. The good news is that no gap is too wide or too permanent. Every organisation can create a collective bond that drives its mission and success. Building a strong organisational culture closes up the goals, wants and needs gaps and drives collaboration and success. Every organisation’s culture should be part of the solution not the problem. Culture is the mortar in your organisation’s wall. Culture matters enormously.
“No goals gap is too wide or too permanent. Every culture can be improved. Every team can be more successful”Simon James Rhodes
What is organisational culture?
What do we mean by culture? Culture is the way to describe the processes, systems, rules and behaviours that operate inside an organisation. Culture is often been described as ‘the way things are done around here’. The more different and uncomfortable a culture feels to the people who work in it, the less engaged they’ll be in it. And that really matters. The more a person loves their organisation, the harder they’ll work to make it successful. Cultures which are inclusive and fair, work hard to close the goals gap. So do cultures that are motivating and rewarding. Cultures which are based on inclusion, equality and cognitive diversity close those gaps even further.
Earn your success
Money isn’t a magic wand for creating great culture. You can’t buy good culture off the shelf, you have to nurture it. Fair rewards for all are always part of the solution, but paying someone to work for you only buys you their time. Something far greater is needed to establish a sustainable bond between a person and an organisation. That connection comes from aligning all the different needs and wants in play, through shared purposes, goals, rewards and outcomes. It comes from creating a collaborative and inclusive Super-tribe. An organisation’s success will always depend on how engaged, aligned and focused its people are. How Super-tribal is your organisation?
“You can’t buy a good culture, you have to earn it through your actions and intentions. Once you know how, it’s usually fairly easy to reverse bad culture”Simon James Rhodes
Our philosophy is to help you build a successful and sustainable business that’s prepared for the future. Firstly we help you to turn your organisation into a Super-tribe. The Super-tribe building process involves using Simon’s twenty elements of successful modern tribes, which include purpose, rules, heritage and spiritual homeland. Then when a tribe has been formed, one or more Super-tribes can be created, by forming partnerships, alliances and joint ventures with other tribes that share overlapping missions. Super-tribes provide the most sustainability and the most winning.
Secondly, we help you to get organisation ‘Win Ready’, by properly defining winning (see example diagram below), increasing its strategic alignment, setting winning standards, scenario planning, creating mission critical values and winning behaviours, improving leadership effectiveness; and ensuring there is clear and well-directed communication. We can provide the cultural catalyst to help you build a winning team.
Working within business, sport, professional services and education we can help to remove the misalignment, dis-engagement and blockers that can impede an organisation’s performance and development. We can help you to develop a fully aligned and engaged mission team. We can help you to establish all the winning behaviours you need. We can help you to produce a team full of red hearts and blue heads.
“Successful teams have a combination of red hearts, blue heads and repeated winning behaviours”Simon James Rhodes
We offer insight and support at strategic and operational levels. By offering practical suggestions, innovative ideas and hands-on assistance, we can help organisations to become more focused, inclusive and high-performing. Using our experience and a series of tools, we can help your organisation to set and achieve an aspirational and inclusive mission. Our success comes from your success. Please see our Services to find our more about what we can do to help.
We provide our services through Simon Rhodes and any agreed associates. More information about Simon is below and in Simon’s Story.
Simon James Rhodes – Tribe builder, Mentor, Leader, Author
Consultant – The Outsider’s View
Simon works with businesses, professional sports teams, schools, professional services providers and other organisations to help them generate greater success, whether that be improved performance, growth or more winning results. Success is what you decide it is and Simon helps organisation’s to define both absolute success and relative success. Using the skills he’s gained as a business leader, employment lawyer, business developer. mentor, event creator and collaborator, Simon can help to improve any organisation’s strategy, culture and operational performance. Simon brings a wide range of experience to every project, together with his ‘Super-tribes’ and ‘Get Win Ready’ philosophies. For a more personal view, click on Simon’s Story below.
Author and creator of the Super-tribes concept and of ‘Get Win Ready’
Simon is the author of the Super-Tribe series, a trilogy of books about organisational performance, culture and becoming ready to win. ‘Build Your Super-Tribe: How tribal rituals and traditions can change the modern world’ describes the twenty elements of successful modern tribes and what you need to invent, or re-invent, your own Super-tribe. The sequel ‘Lead Your Super-tribe: How to become the Pathfinder for your Super-tribe’ describes how to lead your organisation like a high-performing Super-tribe.
Simon’s third book ‘Get Win Ready: Master the Winning Controllables’ explores how you can prepare your organisation for success. All three books are available in paperback and ebook versions on Amazon.
Simon acts as a mentor to leaders in business, professional sport and schools. This experience gives him ongoing insight into organisational issues and challenges across different teams and different sectors. Mentoring should always bring mutual insights and benefits.
Simon was Managing Partner (2009 to 2015) and Senior Partner (2015 to 2021) at the law firm Trethowans LLP. Simon has been described as the ‘cultural catalyst’ behind the growth and development at Trethowans, which has more than trebled the law firm’s turnover from £6 million to £20 million, during a period of recession, Brexit and COVID-19 pandemic. Simon instigated the firm’s merger with Dickinson Manser in 2015, creating a legal Super-tribe. He has helped to create a dynamic momentum at the firm, which continues to grow and develop as a legacy of his approach.
As an employment lawyer for over twenty-five years, Simon has witnessed all the sides and perspectives of working relationships (organisation, shareholder, manager, employee, human resources, Employment Tribunal etc.) many times. Simon has been part of the cultural inner-circle of many corporate and owner managed businesses. Simon has seen first hand the human and financial cost of poor culture. Simon understands the legal, social and commercial benefits of inclusion, diversity and equality. Every stakeholder counts. Simon’s experience has taught him that building tribes is what brings about organisational success. Then transforming them into Super-tribes takes that success to another level entirely.
Building Super-tribes in the Business Community
Simon has created, joined and served in a number of collaborative ventures within the Solent’s business community. They have included the following.
Simon created and co-organised the 3 day, not for profit, ‘Salisbury Big Business Event’ which put on presentations, seminars and workshops for businesses. SBBE ran for five years during the 2010’s and included speakers such as Lady Michelle Mone, Lady Karren Brady and Sir. Ranulph Fiennes.
Simon created and co-organised the annual ‘Solent Business Growth Summit’ which ran for four years in the 2010’s, providing inspirational speakers, business advice and networking. Speakers included Sir. John Timpson, Jo Fairley (Green & Blacks), Gerald Ratner and Levi Roots (Reggae Reggae Sauce).
“Helping good people do good things has a series of rewarding impacts”Simon James Rhodes
In 2014, a Super-tribe was formed in Southampton to bring the business community and public services closer together. The city’s universities, city college, Hampshire Chamber, Business South, Southampton FC and a range of businesses formed a new board under the banner Future Southampton. Simon Rhodes was appointed its Chair. Future Southampton worked closely with Southampton City Council to prepare Southampton’s 2015-2024 strategy. Future Southampton also began the process that to Southampton gaining its Business Improvement District called Go Southampton!
Simon has also served as a Trustee of the Southampton Cultural Development Trust, a Board member of the Hampshire Chamber of Commerce Southampton Business Board; and a judge at both the South Coast and the South Wiltshire Business of the Year Awards amongst other business community involvements.
Host and Speaker
Simon has co-hosted and co-presented the South Coast Business of the Year Awards, with both Sir Geoff Hurst and Roger Black. Simon has chaired 3 sustainability conferences, with speakers including Sir. Vince Cable and Sir. Jonathon Porritt. Simon has spoken at numerous other events for business groups across the South.
Adviser and Advocate
Simon was a qualified employment solicitor for twenty-five years until 2021, working with global, national and regional businesses across all sectors, including retail, food and beverage, logistics and leisure. Simon has a highly impressive record of winning cases at Employment Tribunals across the country (with only one loss at a final hearing on his record). Simon built deep and long-standing client relationships and won over £2M of business during his time at the firm.
Simon has been described by The Legal 500 as a “leading lawyer” and “an employment lawyer who really understands the particulars of the business he is advising”, “concise and risk focused”, “proactive and pragmatic” as well as simply “Outstanding”. The 2020 Guide included an anonymous client quote “The advice given by Simon Rhodes is never straight from a dry textbook but takes into account the context, the culture & the reality of the commercial world in which we operate. You feel that it has been tailored to your specific company circumstances, which draws upon a relationship built over many years.” The 2021 Guide stated “Leading individual Simon Rhodes is the name to note for mergers, acquisitions, outsourcing and insourcing work“. All of these involve changing people and changing cultures. Simon really understands people and organisational culture.
“People will accept change when it’s necessary to achieve a common purpose. How can you convince them it is? Be inclusive and open-book. That’s the best way to take your people with you”Simon James Rhodes
Simon has been ranked in Band 1 in the South by Chambers Guide to the Legal Profession employment law for the last fifteen years. These transferable skills give Simon the ability to advise, coach and support other leaders. Simon has been described as “highly-regarded”, a ”talented lawyer”, “down to earth” and “always focused on the end result”. The industry has acknowledged his skills “Clients hold him in the highest regard while peers describe him as a forthright go-getter.” Chambers Guide has included a number of anonymous client quotes, including “Simon Rhodes’ pragmatic and no-nonsense advice is invaluable”.
In 2018, Simon was named the Hampshire Lawyer of the Year. Trethowans’ Managing Partner, Chris Whiteley, was interviewed and said “Simon is hugely popular with our clients, not just for his knowledge and success within his work but for his wonderful way with people. He’s a superb representative for Trethowans and we echo the commendations of the award judges.”