The new leader of the UK organisation is UK & Ireland Vice President, Jackie Fielding and she has brought a fresh approach to communicating with employees. Jackie only took the position in November 2010 after 19 years working for Medtronic in a range of business roles. She had brought a fresh approach to how she communicates and engages with employees by focusing on listening to the views of employees and communicating in a very open and honest way. Jackie holds monthly ‘have your say’ sessions with employees where employees can meet with her informally over coffee and discuss any concerns or views they may have on the company. These are very open sessions and often employees share things with Jackie they would not share with the direct manager or function leader. From March to May Medtronic experienced a Global Restructure which affected teams in the UK. This was an unsettling time for many people but throughout Jackie communicated regularly and openly using a blog on their Intranet, face-to-face meetings and weekly round up emails to let everyone know what was going on. Where she was unable to answer a question she would explain why and make sure as soon as she was able to respond she did so straight away. This open and honest approach to communicating during what was a tough time for the company was very well received.
As a multi-national corporation there are many initiatives that focus on giving back. In fact Medtronic have a Medtronic Foundation which provides over US$60 million in grants and donations to charities and causes over the last year such as the Japanese Tsunami but it is the motivation and enthusiasm to give something back at a local level which makes us stand out. Every UK employee is given one day paid to volunteer or do something worthwhile for a charitable cause. Around Watford where their UK HQ is based teams have been involved in landscaping gardens for the New Hope Trust. Medtronic are co-sponsors of the Great Watford Walk which most recently raised £12,000, giving Watford Mencap, The Peace Hospice and Watford New Hope Trust £4000 each. Sometimes an employee comes up with a great idea which Medtronic are able to support. For example, one of their customer service team suggested running a curry and quiz night for a local girl who was trying to raise money for a defribillator. Forty employees turned out for a curry and quiz night paid for by Medtronic and all proceeds generated from the tickets went to little Maisie’s campaign.
Medtronic's engagement agenda, "eMpower", has a three tiered approach to engaging employees through recognition, fostering participation and maximising potential. From their previous Best Companies survey results it was clear from the "my Manager" feedback that this was an area the business needed to focus on more. As a result Medtronic's Management Development programme has been further strengthened in order to promote the "eMpower" framework and the associated tools available for managers to draw upon when working with their teams. Whilst this is a long term initiative Medtronic have seen evidence that this programme is starting to have an impact with the UK being one of the highest users of recognition awards both financial and non-financial out of the 120+ countries Medtronic serve patients in.
Learn more about the 8 factors of workplace engagement here
Companies where employees are offered share options
Companies offering a minimum of 25 days annual leave
On-site gym or subsidised gym memberships
On-site nursery or vouchers
Companies offering a final salary or non-contributory pension scheme
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