Viewing entries in
Talent Management

How Atlassian attracts the best talent with high touch candidate experiences

How Atlassian attracts the best talent with high touch candidate experiences

Atlassian is one of Sydney’s greatest success stories to date. An enterprise software company that develops products for software developers, project managers, and content management, best known for its issue tracking application, Jira. Atlassian is also well known for its quirky and down to earth style and has been named as Australia’s Best Employer.

Since its conception in 2002, Atlassian has grown to serve over 60,000 customers globally, including 85 of the Fortune 100, and many million users worldwide. 

Recently at HR Tech Fest in Melbourne, we hosted a series of podcasts live, and caught up with Caitriona Staunton, Head of Recruitment at Atlassian. We were interested to find out how Atlassian manages to attract the very best talent and how they create high touch candidate experiences in their recruiting strategy.
 

Embed company values into the hiring experience.

One of the key takeaways was to think beyond the individual, think beyond the candidate that you're interviewing and think about everyone that's impacted by the candidates’ decision to join your company. Atlassian always try to think about the full picture, including the partner and family.

But despite their strong brand presence with engineering talent in Australia, Atlassian doesn’t just hire engineers.  When they look at all the different geographies around the world that they hire from, they are a bit more of a developing brand, particularly amongst the designer and product manager skillsets, so they need to work a bit harder on this. 

This is compounded by the fact that the technology industry today is full of great people who work in the industry who have endless options available to them when it comes to their next employer, so it’s important to never getting complacent.

"We never let ourselves forget that there are lots of awesome employers out there and great people want to work for them, so despite Atlassian’s strong brand presence, we need to work pretty hard to attract people too."


So what’s the secret to finding exceptional employees?

Regardless of what skill set they’re looking for, Atlassian wants to find people that will resonate with their company values. Atlassian places huge importance on their company values and they’re very confident that they are the secret sauce to finding great employees. For every single candidate that they hire into the company, they make sure that they have a dedicated interview based solely on the candidate’s suitability to Atassian’s values. This is the one thing that really drives quality across every discipline they hire for.

 
5 core values that guide Atlassian’s business  

Open company, no BS / Build with heart & balance / Don’t #@!% the Customer / Play, as a team / Be the change you seek.

They were created way back when the two CEO's posed a challenge to a group of employees: ‘You are going to Mars, you're going to create a brand new society there, which colleagues will you bring and what characteristics will those employees share.?”
They came up with 5 values that were essentially an affirmation of what the company was already living and breathing. To this day, these values have never changed. 
 

Company culture should evolve and change with every new person brought on board, but a company’s values should remain true.

The original idea was that no matter how big they got, they would ensure that these values held true. This is a real testament to what Atlassian has done from the very early days. Everyone who has come in has had to take forward and infuse their own DNA and create an ongoing culture. When you go from 5 people to 2000 globally, and you’re able to retain consistency with culture and respect the same values, it’s a real testament to the strength of Atlassian’s vision in the first place. 
 

How do you keep the values at the forefront?

Caitriona believes that the dedicated interview helps. And from the first day the employee starts at Atlassian, they spend a lot of time ensuring that everyone really understands the core of those values and what they mean. Employees also talk about these values a lot, they have fostered a blogging culture internally where employees blog about what they’re thinking and engage in open debates.

People challenge and debate the values of how they work together, and there is collaboration going on which is quite outstanding. That's a sign of a very healthy culture. Toxic cultures result in people going at each other rather than being able to critique and ensure that people are lifting themselves. 

Atlassian also has a pure awards system which is called Kudos. The idea is to empower employees to decide who they should reward, and for what. Rather than requiring a manager sign off for who you can give a Kudos voucher to, employees can directly reward a colleague. Atlassian allow employees to make that decision themselves and interestingly it is self-policed. As a result, Atlassian has rarely had to step in and get too involved. That is a really strong sign of a good culture.
 

Does Atlassian talk about these things when they go out hunting for talent?

100%. It starts with recruitment where they really spend the time to get to know their target audience and to understand what they care about. It would be really easy to put their cool office spaces and parks at the centre of their advertising, but that’s not what they default to. 
 

The 3 things that matter most to Atlassian candidates are:

1.    company culture and values
2.    the people that they're working with
3.    their ability to have impact on the world. 

Knowing this about their candidates, they choose to put these drivers at the forefront of their branding, their advertising and their entire candidate experience from when they first reach out to a candidate, all the way through to when the candidate starts with them. 

"It’s about taking culture and values and making sure its front and centre of what we do."
 

What channels do Atlassian use for finding these people?

•    Referrals play a key role. As Atlassian’s employees love working there, they are very quick to refer great people who are well aligned to Atlassian’s values.
•    Highly targeted advertising to the audience they want vs trying to attract as many people as possible to apply. 
•    Big budget and highly creative campaigns which they have become known for. These are usually used when they’re trying to break into a new market with new talent pools but where their brand is still developing.
 

Recruitment is marketing and the organisations that get that are the ones that are really starting to thrive in attracting quality candidates. 

A lot of organisations see recruitment as a process, i.e. ‘I’ve got a vacancy, and I go through a process of sourcing and hiring’. But Atlassian’s vision is different, their recruitment team see themselves as product marketers. What’s also different is that it’s all about getting that message out to their audience. They don’t have a sales team, rather it's a unique concept of enterprise software. So their recruiters really are their only sales people.
 

New technology is on the cusp of being launched to give high touch candidate experiences

One of Atlassian’s challenges is that they have candidates all around the world, yet one of their recruiters most effective tools is giving candidates an office tour to show them all of the awesome spaces and the people they would work with. So they are about to leverage new technology to be able to give that same experience to candidates, regardless of where they are, in the form of a virtual reality office tour. 

Candidates can choose their own adventure as they walk through the office, for example ask employees about how they build products or explore daily rituals, perks and of course their values. It’s about using technology to bring the office to candidates all over the world, giving a sense of what life would be like at Atlassian and what their view from their desk looks like.

Thanks to Caitriona for sharing this great journey of talent expedition at Atlassian. Listen to other great conversations on our podcast here.

Is video killing the face-to-face star?

Is video killing the face-to-face star?

Goldman Sachs deal with some pretty large numbers in their recruiting process. Each year, the US investment bank hires over 2,500 students as analysts; some as a part of their summer program, but that figure also includes full time positions. The company hires from around 225 colleges and universities across the United States alone.
 
But Goldman Sachs are doing something incredible with their recruiting process. They have scrapped face-to-face campus interviews for first-round undergraduate candidates and have replaced them with video interviews. This isn’t a case of a few face-to-face interviews being scrapped; Goldman Sachs receive thousands of submissions every year.
 
For a company of that size and stature to throw away their traditional process of phone interviews followed by face to face interviews, this should be a watershed moment for recruitment… right?
 
For the moment, that doesn’t seem to be the case in Australia, even though the technology has been around for a while. The way we interact with people in an everyday sense has changed forever. Video calling is now a mainstream asset; thanks to Facetime and Skype; and companies have leveraged this technology for recruiting on occasion.
 
For example; if you needed to interview someone for a role in Melbourne but the candidate was based in Sydney, it would make a lot of sense to hold an initial interview over Skype, rather than having the candidate travel all the way to you. It makes sense, but it isn’t as widespread as it perhaps should be.
 
Hirevue, for example, specialise in video interviewing, but also use predictive analytics and data points from interviews to build an ideal candidate profile. It can then use that profile to align potential candidates with you. Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) have been around for a long time and many large businesses use them. Most ATS providers would have some form of partnership with video interviewing companies. The technology is there and is accessible. It shouldn’t be difficult for companies to use it.
 
It would make sense, for example, for a company with multiple stores around Australia to send a list of questions to candidates for them to respond to. As a recruiter, you can immediately get a feel for whether or not they might be a good fit for your culture even before you have met face-to-face.
 
So why are Australian companies not embracing video interviews? 

There are a few limitations, the obvious ones include poor internet connections. But the key issue may lie with a traditional Australian market. The technology is there to be used, but it is such a big change from the normal process.

When you think about it, the current recruitment process is almost ingrained in us. You submit a form online, you may then have a phone interview, and you definitely have a face to face interview. Australia has just accepted that it has always been the way of doing things. So surely, there is no hope for video interviewing when we are just too stubborn about change? The best example is performance reviews. The traditional performance review process seemed to be standing the test of time; but what we are now seeing is a gradual shift away from that process.
 
There is still hope for video interviews. Just a few years ago, people didn’t seem to have the right tools. Phones didn’t have cameras and computers didn’t have webcams, but now everyone has become used to streaming videos and watching videos on their phones. 
 
There is also a benefit for candidates. You can attend the interview from any location you want; just set up the camera, wear a suit on the top half and wear your pyjama pants out of view!
 
There is a role for video interviewing in Australian businesses. 
Video interviews are great for high volume roles. They can be integrated with your Applicant Tracking System. Potential candidates can go right through the process and submit the video interview ahead of time. Video interviews could definitely quickly replace phone or face-to-face interviews
For recruiters; it would save a huge amount of time. The amount of work involved with telephone interviews can’t be underestimated. Frantically writing notes during a call is one thing, but having to work your day around a scheduled call can be frustrating.
 
That being said, if you are recruiting for a senior position with more than one round of interviews, you would need a face-to-face session at some stage. The process may require a presentation and it isn’t feasible for the candidate or the recruiter to present over video.
 
While video interviews would be able to tell recruiters more than a phone interview, you really can’t beat the human interaction you get from being in a room with someone. Face-to-face interviews can give a really good read on whether or not the candidate could fit into your culture and that can be lost through video. A combination of both video interviews and face-to-face interviews across various stages of the recruitment process could be the best way to go.
 
The benefits are clearly there and video interviews could fit into most, if not all, interview processes at some stage.
 
But the major resistance to video interviewing stems from one simple fact. 
It’s a disruption to the normal process. It’s a massive shift from what has always been done. Perhaps businesses are hesitant to adopt it because they feel it will take some time to learn the new process.
 
But the next time you are on a train, look at the amount of people who are using smartphones. People are uploading videos to Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram and are using Facetime and Skype to connect remotely. 

Everyone has access to this technology and are able to use it in their everyday life. Why can’t recruiting do the same?

Are recruiters even reading resumes anymore?

Are recruiters even reading resumes anymore?

Resumes are bias.

They change from job to job; the language is slightly altered to meet the relevant company’s key messages and language. The selection of references are always bias; why would a candidate nominate a manager that they didn’t get on well with? There are even companies, like CV Check, that offer a service that assesses resumes and calls out any fabrications. Should recruiters trust the information they get from candidates?

You can find out so much more about people in an age of Facebook and Twitter. Many job applications can come through LinkedIn or Seek profiles. However, online profiles like LinkedIn are fundamentally flawed because candidates still write it themselves. Why should recruiters trust resumes and LinkedIn profiles? Instead, shouldn’t recruiters be placing their trust in their own rigorous recruitment process?

Many businesses still ask for resumes, but instead run them through resume parsing tools within their Applicant Tracking System. Generally, the only information taken from the resume is the candidate previous work history and their education. Recruiters aren’t necessarily interested in a second place finish in the high school javelin competition. That information may be important later on in the process, but initially, recruiters will only take the work experience and education details from the resume.

When it comes to the selection process, resumes and LinkedIn profiles should have no bearing.  
In particular, LinkedIn should only be used for candidate identification; the selection process should be testing if the candidate has the suitable skills.

Recruiters are moving away from the ‘Upload resume and submit’ process to asking some pre-screening questions. For example: “Have you ever worked in retail?” in a retail position. It might seem obvious, but it can cut down the number of suitable candidates. Companies are able to remove applications that aren’t relevant to them based on specific pre-screening questions and begin to schedule face-to-face sessions to with candidates who have the relevant experience or education. It’s in these sessions where recruiters can begin to see whether or not the candidate would be a good cultural fit. With a slim candidate list, recruiters can begin to explore the rest of the resume and judge if it is bullet proof.

This is resulting in interview questions being asked up front, instead of what would generally be asked in a phone interview. Questions around salary expectations and travel requirements can now be asked in the online application form, instead of being asked much later down the track.

Many have proclaimed the resume to be dead.
Are uploaded resumes even relevant anymore? It has been a process that so many businesses have followed for a long time, but now there is so much information recruiters can find out about candidates before they even walk through the door.

On the other hand, candidates also have access to information about recruiters to get an understanding of what they might be looking for in interviews. Candidates would definitely visit LinkedIn profiles and possibly even social media profiles to find any advantage they can.

Aside from education and previous work experience, everything a company needs to know can be found on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and other social media forums.
Only two components are being taken from resumes; and combined with pre-screen questions, specific application questions and a rigorous process, companies are able to build detailed profiles of candidates. We are also beginning to see a rise of video interviewing in Australia and companies are now able to get a better feel for candidates earlier in the process.

Companies shouldn’t need to trust a resume to understand whether or not a candidate would be a good for the job. Instead, they would be better placed to trust their own recruitment process to find the right person.

Companies need to be viewing recruitment and onboarding as the same process, not separate ones. The process should start with recruitment, but continue through onboarding and all the way to probation. Once hired, the candidate has proven they should have the skills for the job. The first three months before their probation should confirm if they can do the job; exposing them to feedback and giving them the opportunity to learn.

The resume only plays a small part in this whole process.

What’s the value in creating a connected mindset?

What’s the value in creating a connected mindset?

Employee experience has become a critical challenge for today's HR function

One of today’s challenges which is really critical to the HR function and the way we are engaging with people is the Employee Experience.

We are seeing a real movement away from compliant centric HR, which we’ve found has been the predominant mode for the last 20-30 years where HR have played bit of a police officer role. Whilst we might have talked about engagement being one of the key factors, really what we’re trying to aim at is getting employees to feel that they have a great experience being an employee in this organisation.

It is a very strong parallel of what we’ve seen in the world of consumer marketing, where we have seen technology be a real enabler to transition from what was a one to many relationship. When a retailer wanted to engage you, they would send you a catalogue which was sent to thousands of other people. And you would peruse that catalogue (maybe spot an offer that you were interested in) and then go to the store and chase it up to complete the transaction.

Nowadays you are more likely to get a very personalised offer, probably of the electronic nature that is based on data formed by your own preferences. This personalised offer is like a virtual gift wrapped parcel which makes you feel quite special and usually compels you to act. And that is an interesting parallel to draw.

If we as HR people can make the employee feel the same way as we do when we’re having great consumer experiences, then we’re on the right track. 

How do we do it? Take the lead from marketing:

  • Focus on attachment, not just engagement
  • Create personalised journeys for employees
  • Infuse the organisational DNA (Culture)

Take a look at the type of leads that are being used to create attachment. It’s going beyond engagement which can be done passively, and focusing on attachment which is a very connected mindset leading to a higher level of differentiation and translates from your employees to your customers very tangibly.

One of the ways to do this is by creating personal journeys. We are looking at the whole person and what’s going on in their journey from their early informative experiences in life right through to where they intersect with your organisation. At some point in that journey they’ll eventually leave and go off to do other things outside of the organisation or retire, but we’re aiming to enrich the individuals on that journey and positively infuse them with the culture or organisation DNA while they’re with you. We’re not talking about a Jones Town kind of parallel, but that positive connection and deep loyalty even in the circumstances that the stages of the journey are very short.

The intersections of workplace and personal life

We’re doing a lot of work with clients at the moment where we’re creating personal centric models for HR and learning.

If we look at the journey of an individual through their life and career on a map, it’s fascinating to see that there are so many intersections between what goes on inside the workplace, and outside the workplace and how that all comes together to form a view of the whole person.

If organisations can get more focused on how we personalise that experience, and how to bring in innovations and power the employees to take advantage of these while they are engaged with the organisation, this is what will help us get to a better space overall. 

Organisations that can provide a genuine employee experience and help enrich the journey for an individual will be the ones who profit. They will get the best people. Their people will stay longer. And they will deliver true differentiation to your organisations, above and beyond your competitors. 

What does football and HR have in common?

What does football and HR have in common?

If you’re a sports fanatic like me, this time of year is special. Not only have we had the regular annual feast of football finals, the commencement of cricket season, motor racing and golf, but this year was also a Rugby World Cup year. We’ve hardly had time to take a breath.
When I’m not watching, coaching or playing sport, I spend most of my time thinking about how organizations can improve the attraction, retention and development of their talent.

We can learn a lot from how professional sports organizations tackle these very same HR issues.

If I was to ask you what you thought the core business of, say, the San Francisco 49ers or Manchester United was, you would no doubt tell me it was football or perhaps selling merchandise. Well in my view you would be wrong. They are in the business of managing talent. Everything else is an output or a by-product of this fundamental activity of sourcing, attracting, retaining, developing and off-boarding players (or talent in the truest sense of the word).
With so much at stake in financial terms in this era of professional sports franchises it is no wonder the “football departments” of these organizations are so incredibly well resourced. Consider the sorts of activities that are managed by these departments – from scouting for new young talent, attracting them to the roster, coaching and developing them in team and individual capabilities, managing their health and well-being, team culture and leadership, list management, match day strategy, to name but a few.

“The best franchises in the world are multi-billion dollar businesses due in large part to a consistent targeted approach to identifying and managing their key talent year-in year-out from generation to generation.”


I’ve always thought that successful organizations in the corporate world could do well to align their HR functions along the same lines as the “Football Department” of the very best sports franchises.

What if you re-purposed your Recruitment team to focus on talent sourcing and attraction as if you were looking for the next Lionel Messi?

Why not morph that uninspiring compliance-centric L&D function into a crack team of specialist coaches intent on transforming mediocre midfielders into gun strikers who could make the difference between winning or losing against your competition? Perhaps instead of dealing with the tears and tissues, our HR Business Partners could look out for all of the extra stuff that helps to keep our talent healthy, happy and motivated to bring their A-game every time they enter the park for your firm?

Food for thought I reckon.

Does your HR team operate like this? Love to hear about it.

Performance management has a performance problem

Performance management has a performance problem

Recent high-profile announcements from the likes of Deloitte, Accenture and NAB scrapping their year-end employee reviews has sparked a growing debate about the effectiveness of traditional performance management approaches in organisations.

Is this the death-knell of traditional performance appraisal processes? And, if so, does that mean we no longer need to put a priority on managing performance?  Does that in turn mean employees no longer need to worry about how well they are doing in the jobs?

I’m confused! Imagine what the average HR person is thinking now that the whole ball game appears to be changing around them.  Not to mention the average employee who, whilst generally hating the annual review process, at least they know what is on the end of it – typically a 1.39% payrise and a pittance of a bonus.

So, let’s delve a little deeper shall we and consider two aspects to this annual performance review debate.

Firstly, what are the factors that are catalysing the shift away from reviews.  Secondly, if we ditch the reviews, what should we be doing instead?

Right, firstly, this is not an overnight seismic shift in thinking from the corporate world.  This little storm has been brewing for the term of my living memory in the HR world – close to 25 years.  Let’s face it, the annual review has been the source of angst, frustration and occasional parody since its very inception.  Why is this? Well, in my view, it’s because it is an artefact – perhaps a relic even – of the very worst aspects of 20th century industrial-era human capital management.  An era when labour was merely an input to production and productivity was measured on the outputs as opposed to outcomes.

Tying compensation to performance reviews became the main instrument to drive motivation and increase individual workers’ productivity.  And for nigh on half a century we have locked and loaded around performance reviews as the primary tool for managing human capital in organisations.  We have spent the last 20 of those years only managing to re-engineer the process by eliminating paper with very little improvement to the data collection nor the impact of the practice itself on the humans involved.

But what the hell is wrong with performance appraisals?

Surely, employers need to be able to hold their employees to account for making a contribution to the business.  We go through our school and university careers being constantly assessed, why not our working lives too?

Well, here’s a snapshot of the latest research that points to the ineffectiveness of performance appraisals.

  1. Alec Bashinsky – the HR Director at Deloitte – compared performance reviews to a drive-by shooting with neither party being clear on their objectives nor how to rate individuals against them.
  2. A recent Harvard Business School report highlighted the “idiosyncratic rater effect” – that the rating given to an employee is a more accurate reflection of the rater themselves than of the person they are rating. Challenging to standardise, pathologically inaccurate and impossible to calibrate, it is therefore a very poor tool to effectively drive better performance.
  3. Jason Averbook has been telling us for a while now that performance reviews are designed to support HR’s needs and that we should instead be focusing on building and supporting better team leaders who in turn will influence positively the effectiveness of their teams and the individuals within them.

Ok, so if we’re willing to accept that performance reviews should be sent the way of the fax machine and the dodo bird, what should we be doing instead?

The answer to that is longer than we can cover in a single post, but here are a few conversation starters that we can pick up on in the next installment.

  1. Organisations are already evolving their performance approaches to encompass more informal and more frequent feedback opportunities between team leaders and team members. This trend will continue to be at the heart of the evolution of performance management in the future.
  2. Increasing investment in talent management platforms is driving a more holistic approach to people management with better tools to support the employee life-cycle resulting in a better data-set to aid team and individual development.
  3. The growing adoption of social collaboration technologies in the enterprise provides increased opportunity for more frequent contextual feedback, social learning and employee engagement.
  4. The transition of a higher proportion of the workforce to contingent or freelancer models will increase the redundancy of traditional employee-centric performance approaches. If it hasn’t already, focusing on engagement will trump a focus on performance in getting the best out of this new generation of workers.
  5. The severance of the umbilical cord that has tethered performance ratings with compensation reviews will accelerate the movement away from formal reviews.

Clearly, I’m only scratching the surface on this, and it deserves further discussion.  Interested to hear what you all think? Is there life left in the Annual Piece of Paper yet? Has your company moved away from the formal review yet?

The nature of work is changing – can you keep up?

The nature of work is changing – can you keep up?

With technology becoming further ingrained in our lives and our work habits, the nature of work is changing and our traditional HR practices are at risk of getting left behind. At Future Knowledge, we pride ourselves on staying on top of the latest trends and information impacting the face of work. In our conversations with business leaders and industry influencers, we have noted some key points resonating with those managers looking to navigate through this process.

Unified talent management

One of the key trends evolving now is the concept of unified talent management. This refers to the idea that HR needs to break out of the traditional silo approach and look at the holistic lifecycle of an employee.

A parallel can be drawn with consumer businesses that focus on the customer lifecycle. The aim of the customer lifecycle is to generate repeat customers who leave with a good feeling about the business and have a strong desire to return. HR should focus on the same aim to generate greater employee engagement and improve their reputation as an employer of choice.

HR needs to change

Currently in business there is a shift towards greater process automation. Now is the time for HR managers to closely connect with business goals and play an outcome focused role. HR managers should embrace the use of data analysis to inform smart decision-making.

Shifting work environment

Research has discovered that an average person checks their smartphone 150 times a day! This causes a very convoluted lifestyle where we are constantly bombarded with information leading to what is known as the overwhelmed employee – something I know I’ve experienced before.

HR managers need to simplify complicated processes and information to cut through the noise and engage employees. The business can then achieve a more effective outcome as communication is improved between employees.

Performance management in the future

Performance management has always been a tricky process to get right. Often when employees are worried about generating a specific performance rating, and are constantly watching the numbers, it can result in lower engagement and performance.

It’s time for performance management to evolve to better measure the relationship between employees and managers, and move away from figures. If you really want to push boundaries why not look at ways to do this in real-time with immediate results to generate more of a feedback mechanism.

The time is now for HR teams to take a greater stake in the direction of the business and look at employee engagement from a more holistic perspective. With new technology on offer to enhance processes, if you’re not already exploring the opportunity this brings you could run the risk of being left behind!

To see more of our insights into how the nature of work is changing watch our video ‘Key themes from day one of Cornerstone Convergence’.

Three employee engagement drivers every business needs

Three employee engagement drivers every business needs

Recently, I was invited by SilkRoad to present a webinar to HR managers about driving employee engagement strategies, an increasingly pertinent topic in my line of work as a change andtransformation specialist. Employee engagement might seem like a simple enough theory, but it’s amazing how different the perception of staff engagement can be among employees, management and again in the HR department.

My presentation certainly sparked some interesting perspectives from webinar participants. Some feedback also highlighted that there can be a wide range of views from amongst HR and management on potential approaches to engaging employees.

In 2013, we are seeing employee engagement move well beyond its traditional roots to involve stages of communication that start well before a person becomes an employee of a company.

A person’s perception about the HR environment of a prospective workplace begins long before they actually start working there. One of my key messages during the presentation focused around the need to think about engagement as early as the recruitment process.

A recent research poll by Gallup found that more than 80 per cent of Australian employees feel disengaged at work, with more than 20 per cent being actively disengaged. The poll estimated that disengagement costs Australian organisations at least $33.5 Billion a year in lost productivity! This figure is astounding, considering engagement can be easily amplified by ensuring your workplace engagement strategy can be built around three simple pillars.

Leadership

Leadership is the secret sauce of effective employee engagement – it’s not rocket science! We know that leaders are responsible for creating and sustaining a culture of empowerment and trust. Leaders must lead by example, exemplifying the values and behaviours that will sustain and engaging culture.

A great leader instills a sense of authority in their people to take (measured) risks, to be creative and to make a personal contribution to the cause.

Alignment

If we presume our leaders are capable and effective, the next key driver is alignment. Unless we can harness the collective contributions of employees towards a common goal, efforts will be unproductive.

True alignment is based on employees understanding exactly what an organisation does and the direction of the company. It connects corporate values to brand and reputation.

Connectedness

No, I’m not referring to connectivity…. Connectedness implies that people don’t just ‘get along’, they feel a genuine and authentic sense of being connected to one another and with their team.

Fostering connectedness is the glue that binds all other engagement-related initiatives in your organisation.

You can have great leaders and a strong alignment to a common goal; but without a truly connected workforce – who posses genuine care for one another, their customers and suppliers – you’re missing a big opportunity.