The Story of PEP®
In 1983, the American Kerry J. Gleeson was working as a marketing consultant in a Stockholm branch of Handelsbanken. His principal task was to help correct the department’s very poor sales rating. Together with the department’s managers, Kerry designed a number of promotional projects to boost sales results.
Within the allotted time - the desired results were nowhere to be seen.
Upon investigation, Kerry was met with the same answer: “We have so many other things to do, we simply have not had the time…”.
Kerry’s conclusion was that us Swedes might not have understood the importance of completing the actions we start.
As a result he coined the term “Do it Now!”, which has become one of the most fundamental philosophies in the Personal Efficiency Programme. At the same time Kerry incorporated something he’d discovered in the book “In Search of Excellence” by Thomas J. Peters and Robert H. Waterman Jr. It was that we humans are not capable of carrying more than seven things in our heads at the same time without losing focus and concentration.
It was the start of the Personal Efficiency Programme. Kerry developed a process to help people deal with the small, insignificant, time-consuming actions which rob both time and focus from the bigger, more important tasks.
He needed a guinea pig to test this newly-developed efficiency process prior to releasing it to his client. And this is where I came into the picture. I and my colleagues in Swedish publisher, Mediaspesialisterne AB, agreed to Kerry taking us through the process. At the end of it, we were over the moon!
The results were equally as good when Kerry introduced the programme to the Handelsbanken Stockholm branch. Three months later, the Stockholm department rose to the top 10 in Handelsbanken’s internal results list and Kerry was given the opportunity to present the programme he’d implemented in the Stockholm branch to Handelsbanken’s head office management.
The management team were so convinced that they engaged Kerry to implement the process in each of their branches right across Sweden. These new methods for streamlining work were then to be implemented throughout the entirety of the rest of the company by 30 selected Handelsbanken trainers.
Kerry called his invention ‘The Personal Efficiency Programme’ and in the years that followed PEP became well known and accepted among more and more large Swedish businesses and organisations.
When, at the end of 1984, Kerry decided to move his family back to the USA, he asked me if I was interested in perpetuating PEP in Sweden and expanding the programme to the rest of the Nordic region. Since I’d always been interested in helping people manage their day-to-day work, and with his trust in me, I naturally said ‘Yes please’.
For these past 25 years, I have been helping to develop people, businesses and markets – and I would like to end the story by saying a big thank-you to all the staff and partners who have worked with me over the years.
It has been a fantastic 25 years – and the future looks bright.
Especially now that we have PEP companies in 24 countries around the world.
Lena Davidsson Founder of PEP®WORLDWIDE in the Nordic Region and Nordic Managing Partner
You can really see the difference on the desks. I can easily see who's been on the course and who hasn't
Financial Consultant, Ikast Rådhus