At our last HR, Talent, & People Professionals Meetup, Hessie Coleman, The Head of People Operations at Starling Bank, and Catherine Alani, the Head of Recruitment at Transferwise, spoke about how they work on creating a company culture that attracts talent and keeps employees happy. Marc Cooper, the Managing Director at bob, opened up the evening to questions from the audience.
Here are some of the key takeaways from the discussion:
How do you attract and recruit the right people?
There are usually two segments potential employees fall into; people you are able to attract and want more of and people you want to attract but are not able to attract. Teaching your employees how to act as recruiters is one of the most effective ways to attract the people you want more of. Have your current employees write blog posts about their work experiences, attend conferences, and utilize social media to show their network what projects they are working on. Reach those individuals you aren’t able to easily attract through defining why you are a great place to work, and localizing it to the market you want to find employees in. The most important thing to remember is to be authentic in your messaging to them.
Additionally, try to understand why employees might decide not to apply to your company. When someone leaves your careers page without applying, ask them why they are leaving the page. When someone is hired, ask what it was that might have stopped them from applying or accepting the job.
How do you keep employees engaged?
People always want to be challenged and constantly growing. Companies must build this into their culture. Everyone should know how they are contributing to the customer and should be allowed to pursue their ideas and aspirations within the company. Think about how to create strong learning and development programs; rotational programs is one way to do it.
How do you change company culture?
Culture is shaped by the behaviors you reward and punish, and people will emulate behavior that is rewarded. If employees who come in early and stay late are promoted, others in the company will do the same, and you end up with a burnt-out workforce. Teach your employees that it’s ok to not do everything, but to know how to prioritize the most important projects and tasks.
How do you promote an open company culture?
Check-in conversations are a great way to allow your people to communicate things that are happening that are inhibiting them from working well. You can help managers hold productive check-in meetings by training them; prepare them with questions to ask such as “what are your priorities?” and “how can we help you?”, and make sure they are setting time aside to talk about these things. A good way to screen for good managers during the interview process is to ask them what the most constructive feedback they have gotten from their team was. The answer is pretty telling.
The key is to treat people as people, and not as machines. Always be flexible and supportive of your employees to promote an open company culture.
Talk to your people
There is no “one size fits all” way of enhancing company culture and attracting the right talent. Each company will have its’ own way of managing and engaging their people, but the most important thing you can do when growing a company and hiring for the best talent is to always listen to your people.
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Danielle is a Marketing Operations Manager at bob. She studied Business and Psychology and believes in the power of utilising behavioral insights to form great companies. She enjoys discovering what the future of work might look like, listening to podcasts, traveling, and hiking.
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