My Team - Employees' feelings towards their immediate colleagues and how well they work together
My team benefits from a high scoring My Manager factor as the manager is key to creating and sustaining a productive and positive work environment.
An employee’s perceived team will be those they work with on a daily basis.
Initiatives such as the Cycle to Work scheme and a city-centre based office to support commuting by public transport are just two of the initiatives Simitive has in place to lessen its environmental impact. Combined with this, it runs a paperless office and employs fully cloud-based IT systems.
After becoming increasingly concerned about the health and wellbeing of its staff during periods of lockdown, the company launched an employee wellbeing programme including 24/7 access to helplines, free counselling sessions, ensuring holidays and breaks were taken, as well as access to confidential conversations with Heads of Department, HR, and Directors.
In order to keep a culture of collaboration and interest during the pandemic, the company held regular meetings on a company and team level, as well as coffee mornings and fun events such as Taskmaster. These were all held in addition to weekly 1-2-1s for all staff members, as well as six monthly development reviews.
A staff forum network, known as ‘Gateway Together’, exists to raise awareness of diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Designed to promote a constantly evolving positive and inclusive culture, it has led to a number of events initiatives including Eid celebrations, Pride, Men’s Health, Black History Month, and International Women’s Week.
Gateway’s office refurbishment included a new recycling system, as well as other initiatives that focused on a commitment to mitigating its impact on the environment. These include LED lighting, the use of hybrid vehicles and electric charging points, as well as a ‘Cycle to Work’ scheme and a bike loan initiative.
Collaboration and inclusion activities consist of weekly team briefings internally, as well as a number of external team bonding activities. These include taking part in virtual ‘escape rooms’, as well as the establishment of a ‘Birthday Month Club’ to encourage celebration across different teams.
The firm's values are used as part of the professional-development process and discussions with staff take place at least annually. There is also a career-progression guide for which these values are a key part.
Quarterly staff forum meetings continued via Zoom during the pandemic and staff were asked for feedback on how they were coping with working from home. Many teams have quiz nights or Friday drinks via Zoom.
When it comes to mental health, all employees and their families are supported through an employee assistance programme. The company also has a mental health first aider.
Responding to the Black Lives Matter campaign Bravissimo create digital listening groups to hear personal accounts of discrimination experienced by employees and has launched a Diversity & Inclusion committee to ensure it is more representative in all it does from its marketing and models, product range, recruitment and team diversity.
Christmas hampers were to every employee to thank them for support and efforts over the past year and retail and customer service teams held a range of events from quiz nights to dress-up & exercise classes to keep teams motivated and positive.
Over the last year Bravissimo's warehouse has recycled 72 tonnes of bailed cardboard, 17.3 tonnes of polythene, and 16.4 tonnes of tissue paper. The Product team have donated leftover textiles in an initiative that has meant local schools have been able to use the materials for Art lessons.
Senior leaders communicate with all staff on a weekly and monthly basis to share business and market updates in person, if virtually. This includes open and live Q&A and feedback sessions, with full employee participation. An open-door policy has been extended to virtually directly access MD James Hardy and his team.
Prior to the pandemic, CCS Media had already implemented virtual employee group “huddles” every morning that took in direct team members – and with senior leaders periodically joining the calls on a rolling basis. This is replicated throughout the business for management.
The company organises multiple weekly social and wellness initiatives – mindfulness, fitness and social – for employees and their children, who get treats like colouring books sent out. Hampers with a choice of contents are distributed to people's homes for individuals and families to enjoy.
Employees are encouraged to pursue any of the many qualifications which the CIPP provides to its members from an MSc in strategic management to a BA (Hons) in business management and foundation degrees in payroll administration or pensions administration and management.
In addition to daily team catch-ups, a virtual social group was set up called The Locked Inn and on Friday afternoons employees were invited to get together to socialise informally which was also a great way to introduce new starters to the wider team in a more relaxed environment.
A Mental Health Hub was set up and more staff were trained as mental health first aiders to help identify signs of mental health or signs of stress earlier. An online wellness event including Yoga and Pilates sessions was held to promote positive mental wellbeing.
A RISE values system – do the Right thing; make a positive Impact; keep it Simple; and always Evolve – shapes the EKM culture and attract the best new talent, recruited mainly using job boards, LinkedIn, and by scouting Stem (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) graduate fairs.
Employees can recognise their colleagues in a “Wheel of Heroes” initiative, to tell them how appreciated it was when they helped out. Names go into a draw and the winner gets to spin the Wheel of Heroes for prizes of anything from £1 toilet roll to £100 or a day's holiday.
EKM has donated to various charities over the past year, including Save the Children. The company also works closely with local schools and CEO Antony has given speeches by video link to classes on building your own business.
The leadership team quickly took steps when Covid-19 arrived to ensure the business remained solvent. It also checked that Empiric's technology infrastructure was fit for home-working and employees could stay connected during lockdowns. Mental health became an even greater priority as clients shut up shop and parents became teachers.
Training and development is a priority whether staff are in the office or working from home, with technologies such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams used as necessary. While some recruitment firms unfortunately had to make trainers redundant or furlough them in 2020, Empiric hired a new trainer.
People from across the business were brought together to tackle the problems of office silos, which can lead to lost opportunities and a sense of exclusion that is the antithesis of the company's culture. This increased collaboration and creativity across departments, as well as improving workplace cohesion.
For the first time, Equinix has been named as one of Fortune Magazine's Most Admired Companies – those with the strongest corporate reputations based on a poll of top executives, directors and analysts. Its EBX (Employee Business Exchange) forum enables nominated representatives to discuss strategies and ensure transparent, effective communication with employees.
Staff interest groups quickly sprang up on Yammer with people sharing personal moments, fun photos, and, of course, communicating about the business. Zoom quizzes and virtual drinks continued hallway conversations. The MD hosts two coffee catch-ups a week with his team and encourages others to do the same.
This year Equinix donated a total of £54,339 to 205 good causes. Food was gifted to The Chapel in Surrey, which went to 150 families; staff backed a joint project between St Mary's Church in Ash Vale and a local coronavirus support group; and raised nearly £1,500 in October's Race Against Hunger.
Ordinarily when people are in the office First Response has recycling schemes in place to help reduce its carbon footprint. It uses information security company Shred-It to destroy confidential paperwork, which is then 100% recycled. With 100% home-working, the goal of being 100% paperless is even closer.
When it became apparent that some departments were struggling from home to keep up with customer demand – because of additional checks and conversations required in response to the pandemic – all teams with capacity stepped in to divert calls, deal with what demand they could and, in some cases, people retrained to better support each other.
The company contributes to numerous voluntary employer boards at local colleges and sixth forms, where businesses take part in the co-design of the curriculum on offer. First Response feels this ensures that students leave college with robust and up-to-date skills that are applicable in industry.
Want to find out more about how Best Companies products can make the most of the insights gathered in your b-Heard survey? Click below to find out how we can help facilitate positive change in your organisation: