Keeping People Happy

The challenge of finding the best staff with the diverse skill set required in today’s workplace is one that Channel HR teams and business owners alike grapple with daily. Yet the recruitment process is only half the battle. Once you get the perfect candidate, companies then need to work hard to keep hold of them – and keep them motivated. Here, Dan Fish, Chief People Officer at Invosys, shares his top tips to attracting and retaining talent.

Incentive schemes, training programmes and financial rewards are all tried and tested sweeteners. Yet are they really needed? How much is too much? How do you please everyone?

According to motivational guru Daniel Pink, businesses can now identify an emerging new breed of savvy employees who require a different approach to a traditional “pat on the back”.

Pink suggests that companies now must consider Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose when rewarding staff – being trusted to make decisions, being allowed a voice and having a clear purpose are the key criteria that job hunters are looking for.

And it’s these three things that channel companies must now put in to practice. Yet just how do you go about this?

Dan Fish, Chief People Officer at Invosys, makes it his mission to ensure that his team are driven, motivated and happy at work – and it has paid off. Here are his top tips in to how other Channel businesses can do the same.

1) Never underestimate the power of a thank you.
When your employees go above and beyond on a regular basis, notice it. It makes a difference when this is acknowledged and rewarded with a simple thank you. A simple thanks shows fairness and respect to all – and what’s more, it is proven to increase engagement and motivation.

2) Flexible Working
In the channel, we’re incredibly lucky that some of the brightest stars in technology work in our sector, doing an outstanding job.

It’s crucial to remember that these whizz kids are also human beings with families, pets, and other responsibilities. Appreciate that, and when possible offer a sense of autonomy, trusting staff to manage their own time. This could include flexible working, part time hours and home working.

3) Positively encourage work-life balance
Happy, satisfied, motivate and engaged employees make for a happy workforce. A culture where long hours becomes the norm can have a hugely negative effect on both employee wellbeing and productivity. We are all the sum of our parts and at Invosys we encourage staff to have interests outside of work – and we really put our money where our mouth is. Each employee has an annual “Personal Interest Allowance”, a pot put aside for every employee to learn new skills outside the workplace. This could be skiing, cooking, or even circus skills.

4) Staff Perks
Companies like Perkbox exist simply to motivate staff and offer them rewards that benefit them. This could be cinema tickets, free mortgage advice, cheap airport parking or weekly freebies such as chocolates and ice creams. Perkbox also offer a wellbeing section with video tutorials covering everything from relaxation and sleep techniques, to healthy recipes and hardcore exercise routines.

5) A sense of Ownership
At Invosys we acknowledge our staff’s beginnings with a snap of all employees in their formative years in our lobby– and we help secure their future in the form of a company share scheme, allowing everyone to own a piece of the business.

6) Autonomy and Trust
When a company takes on a new employee, it’s because they have recognised a spark and a belief that they will excel in the position and culture. Therefore, micro-managing and carrot and stick types of management are completely off the table. At Invosys want free thinkers and problem solvers, so we trust all employees and give them autonomy to get to solutions in their own ways. This philosophy works across the board – there aren’t many companies where the COO will go make morning tea and toast for the rest of the team!

7) Building and developing skillsets
Encourage employees to build and shape their careers through learning new skills, be it in house training or practical training out of the office. We want our employees to expand their skill sets and be motivated to take up opportunities within the company and so we provide the foundations for this.

8) Fun and participation/Creating a good work environment.
The team that plays together, stays together, right? If you can’t have a good belly laugh in the office, where can you? There are many ways to provide a great place to work and embrace fun and participation, through nights out, away days, fitness challenges and fundraising.

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David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine