Creating a Universally Successful Destination (USD) for Rail.

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Johannah Randall

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The Potentuel approach is designed to help organisations, leadership teams and stakeholders to navigate through change.

Rail is substantially different in the post-pandemic and in a world where we are trying to predict future travel demand that is attractive to existing and new customers. The evolution of Great British Railways with a new culture and organisation needs to think now about the future relationships to be built with each of the organisations and through them, their people and customers.

For rail, this is the ideal opportunity and right time to embrace the change, to re-set and drive a sustainable future to support business growth, build a greener transport system, and a better passenger experience whilst retaining and attracting the people and talent to create the new organisation and skills needed.

The USD is the starting point for change and enables people to reach their full potential and play a part in growing their business.

How can a Universally Successful Destination help?

Visions and missions focus on ‘word-crafting’ often presented by the leadership team, but a USD can help create a new meaning – a north star with business purpose, vision, and mission centring on the customer that is clearly articulated, understood and shared by its people into a shared direction of travel, developed by all and backed by operational plans, metrics, and everyday actions.

What does a Universally Successful Destination do?

Creating a USD is greater than an organisational mission statement. It is designed to create emotion and connection, embracing the diversity of the individual and their talents. It brings voice, choice, and aligns everyone’s power in such a way to scale human abilities exponentially.

“Creating A Simpler, Better Railway for Everyone In Britain” - A Universally Successful Destination

Great British Railways are tasked with leading a “generational” transformation of the railways. Focus will be on creating the new organisation in collaboration with people across industry focusing on driving business recovery, tackling cost challenges, and promoting efficiency, all the while focusing on “putting the passenger first”.

The challenge will be to bring all the existing entities together to create a new guiding mind with leadership and people at its core where everyone understands what it means for them, their teams, and their organisations.

What will be the railways crucial ingredients in achieving a USD for its people?


People who work in rail are passionate about what they do and will want to play their part in the future success of Great British Railways. They will want to do more than contribute but influence the new mission, vision, innovation, and commercial success of the railway.

The people who work on the frontline are to closest to their customers, processes, and experiences so their opinions should be valued as they are best placed to “show the way” to improve and rethink the business.

The key to the success of a USD for Great British Railways will be to engage with teams and existing people to unlock the value of their accumulated customer experiences, knowledge of operational processes, and local markets. By engaging in meaningful conversations with our people a forum can be provided to listen to their frustrations and challenges whilst creating a process for solution building that they actively participate in.

Leaders will need to have the maturity to seek out and trust their people to share their ideas, criticisms, and feelings openly and safely without judgement and listen to their views enthusiastically and seriously.


The best leaders are those that have genuine respect for the views of their people, giving them the support and tools to thrive. People are our most valuable asset; they act as the railway ambassadors interacting directly with the customer and are key to the success of Great British Railways.

It is essential that rail leaders listen, prepare, and promote the forthcoming transformation (at every level). Leaders need to embrace dialogue with their people – understanding their hopes and fears to prioritise and enact their new ideas.


Alignment of an organisations processes mapped to the vision, mission, business plan, and objectives along with the people plan needs to be simple, methodical and pragmatic.

Working across teams, systems, and culture will build initiative, momentum and a strategic solution where low-hanging fruit are identified and addressed at speed.


The USD starts with the people engagement to deliver the new culture of “putting passengers first” but, leadership at every level needs to provide the road map and direction to ensure the objectives are met.

How are you going to engage your people to create a Universally Successful Destination?

Fuel growth today

Members of our Potentuel and Fuel teams are excited to be supporting the Railway Industry Association (RIA) Innovation Conference on 26th and 27th April and will be running a deep dive interactive workshop, co-led with The National Skills Academy for Rail (NSAR). The session will address these issues and be packed with techniques to shape leadership and people strategies in a time of a constant change. Find out more and register for the event –

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