Mowi Canada West Case Study


Mowi Canada West Case Study

Making measuring and evaluating behavior-based performance a top priority.


“The built-in measures of ROI in dollars and team behaviorally-based performance improvements has tied perfectly into Mowi’s organizational objectives.”

– Dean Dobrinsky, VP Human Resources, Mowi Canada West

Vivo Team and Mowi Canada West - 2 Gold Brandon Hall Group Excellence awards for Best Advance in Measuring the Impact of Leadership Development and Best Team Development Program

Company Background

Mowi Canada West, a leading salmon aquaculture company, operates salmon farms on the coast of beautiful British Columbia and Vancouver Island, where 600 people produce 45,000 tonnes of sustainable farm-raised Atlantic salmon each year. Globally, Mowi produces one-fifth of the world’s farm-raised salmon at facilities in Norway, Scotland, Canada, Chile, Ireland, and the Faroe Islands. Mowi is the first company in North America to have all of their production farms certified to the Aquaculture Stewardship Council salmon standard.

Global Aquaculture

People Analytics: Vital Statistics Report™
Leadership Development Program
Executive Coaching Sessions



Mowi’s ocean-based operations are spread out over tens of thousands of square miles. Many operations are served by boat and/or seaplane. Weather, particularly in winter, is a major issue. Some of Mowi’s farm-raised salmon facilities are integrated into first nations communities.

Mowi’s entire operation is team-based and each team, while operating independently, also has to be coordinated to ensure safety and efficiency.

Managers and supervisors, many of whom are fish scientists, have different levels of team and leadership skills and experience with varying levels of competence and motivation regarding effective communication, accountability, ownership, safety processes, adherence to safety best practices, and overall team performance.

Leaders have a diverse mix of experience, tenure, and technical job-related skills that influence how they lead. Due to a number of historical factors there is also a lack of common leader/team language, best practices, and processes. Recent accidents, from minor to major, and subsequent investigations surfaced the need to train leaders as soon as possible to mitigate future safety issues.


“People are very engaged in reviewing and understanding the VSR™ findings of their own and each other’s teams. Small groups formed sporadically when results were shared and people had impromptu discussions about findings and their experiences on their teams.”

– Participant Feedback


One of Mowi’s operating assumptions is that leader/team effectiveness is a key set of skills that are crucial to building a culture of safety, productivity, and celebration of diversity.

Mowi’s executive team determined that it is essential that Mowi have a way of measuring and evaluating the behaviorally-based performance of learning and development. This data is important for Mowi to focus on particular behaviorally-based performance areas of improvement tied to business results. The data is also important for Mowi Canada West to present clear behavioral improvements and ROI in dollars to the Mowi board.

Vital Statistics Report™ (VSR™)

Vivo Team’s proprietary Vital Statistics Report™ (VSR™) is designed to produce data on how team members and their leader are performing in the six key indicators of team effectiveness. The VSR™ illustrates the cost of lost productivity, pinpoints specific strengths, weaknesses, leader gap, and other factors contributing to the costs of lost productivity.

Teams and leaders create a VSR™ by responding to a detailed series of statements related to the 6 key indicators of high performance: Communication, Feedback, Accountability, Emotional Intelligence, Structures, and Cohesion.

The assessment takes about 15 minutes to complete and is used to identify areas where teams could use improvement in team and leader productivity.

The initial VSR™ gives a picture of how effective the full Mowi Canada West team was at the start of the program. We analyze the results of the VSR,™ report our findings to team leads and management, and together we place teams into targeted training modules. With the VSR,™ Mowi can measure and evaluate the learning outcomes and organizational impact of the leadership development program that follows.


“The leadership program has been integrated throughout the organization. We have leaders representing every Department, at all levels of the Company, not only interacting in this process, but then taking their learnings to their teams for action.”

– Dean Dobrinsky, Human Resources Director, Mowi Canada West


Leadership Development Program

Based on the data from the VSR,™ the program focused on Communication and Feedback. Live, virtual instructor-led training and coaching (60-minutes per session) were delivered in interleaving segments.

Each online learning session was supported with a Play of the Day (brief summary learning cues to help participants refer to, retain, share and apply new learnings on the job to support retention and application to the workplace).

Participants also have 24/7 access to a company specific learning experience platform. The platform gives participants additional online learning content to support their in-session training and is home to any session recordings, should a participant miss a live session.

Coaching Sessions

1-to-2 coaching is two coachees working with an executive coach in 60-minute sessions. During the session each coachee gets a 30-minute personalized coaching event while the other coachee observes. The roles are then switched. This technique deepens and accelerates the learning experience so people can easily apply those learnings into their work situations—a process referred to as double-loop learning.

Leaders with cross-departmental or different geographical areas can share ideas and gain key insights into how the organization works. Additionally, by observing their colleagues being coached, they learn how to coach their own team members.


“A key strategic objective was to develop leaders and create specific talent pools with specific deliverables, and this program has fit perfectly into helping us achieve that.”

– Dean Dobrinsky, Human Resources Director, Mowi Canada West



After completing the program a VSR™ was again deployed to participants. In reviewing the new VSR™ results leaders can see the behaviorally-based changes and the ROI in dollars as a result of the training as well as areas that continue to need more improvement.

13 of 19 teams showed a DECREASE in the Cost of Lost Productivity, reclaiming $296,507 with a 735% ROI. 6 teams showed an INCREASE of $35,017.

The results across teams were not equal. Some teams improved more than others and a few teams reported worse results. The beauty of Vivo Team’s people analytics is that Mowi Canada West was able to flag teams who are high priority for development so leadership can support and develop them.


Overall result: $275,601 reclaimed with an ROI of $375%

The aggregate of all teams reported an improvement across the board in all indicators including those trained on Communication and Feedback, yielding an overall ROI of 375%.

Team Highlights

One team showed an improvement of 29% in Communication. The motivation of this team to use the skills showed a 17-point jump. The team also showed a 42% improvement in Feedback, with a 24-point jump in collaboration (the desire of the team to work together).

Another team demonstrated a huge jump in the indicators of Communication and
Feedback: 30% and 47% respectively, with another benefiting from an 18% and 16% increase.

Benchmarks for Success

All leaders engaged in the same methodology which included data driven insights, propriety behavioral learning models, and scenario based group coaching while guided by a personalized learning experience platform.

Some leaders reported that by using the skills they learned in the sessions, they cut about 30% off of the time it takes to do their performance reviews. Other leaders, upon hearing that, have made a commitment to be more disciplined in applying what they are learning.

Leaders are repeating back for clarity and accuracy and interrupting less in coaching and training sessions. There has been a decrease in misunderstanding and conflicts, particularly during the anxious time of the emerging COVID-19 crisis.

Next Steps

Based on feedback from participants and the people analytics provided by Vivo Team, the Managing and HR Directors, in consultation with the program leaders, made the decision to continue the next phase of this 2.5 year continuous learning experience with virtual instructor-led training, individual and group coaching, behavioral analytics, and access to Vivo Team’s learning experience platform. In addition, a new multi-annual program is being rolled out to next level leaders.