28 Nov 2016 5 ways we’re empowering our team
We’re delighted to be nominated for Best Place To Work at the MRS Awards and ahead of the ceremony on 5th December, we’re celebrating some of the things that make FreshMinds a great place to work.
One of the unique things about FreshMinds is the entrepreneurial culture within the business. We empower our people to make and lead change within the business – from improving internal processes to enhancing the office environment. If you have a great idea, our motto is just do it: seek forgiveness, not permission. With this mentality deeply engrained in the business, it’s no surprise that two thirds of our team say they feel empowered to lead and make a difference.
In this blog post, we’re showcasing 5 initiatives that our people have led to make FreshMinds a great place to work:
1. We’ve set up peer-to-peer mentoring and training
We know that learning and development is important to our team. So we’ve encouraged our staff to share their skills with others across the business. We’ve seen employees run training courses to share their knowledge and expertise, whilst others have set up mentoring schemes to coach and develop more junior members of the team.
We have also built mentor programmes for our senior leaders. Our Executive Chair, Caroline Plumb, for instance, is involved in The Mayor’s International Business Programme, a scheme designed to support high potential businesses in achieving their growth ambitions. As part of this, Caroline has had the opportunity to learn from some of the world’s best businesses leaders on a Female Founders trade mission to Silicon Valley.
2. FreshMinders are always trialling new tools and technologies
We’re an inherently curious bunch and are always looking to discover new things. Employees across the business have taken inspiration from adjacent sectors and trialled a range of tools, all designed to enhance our ways of working. In line with our agile philosophy, we test, measure and learn to ensure we roll out only the best tools.
A flagship project has been rolling out Slack, a new internal communications platform. Slack has made a huge impact across the business: providing a platform to share knowledge, information and to solve problems.
3. We’ve developed our workspaces to reflect our agile brand
Last year, we established Culture Club, a forum for our people to suggest and lead cultural change, helping us bring our brand to life.
One of the ideas that came out of this group was an initiative to transform the office. This saw our staff lead a programme of work to develop new spaces tailored to different working styles – from music in collaborative areas to quiet working zones. In addition to this, we encourage our staff to work outside the office – from home when they really need to get their heads down or on client-site to better collaborate and build relationships with our clients.
4. We’ve found new ways of rewarding employees
From free breakfast on Fridays and monthly socials, right through to a subsidised annual ski trip, we’ve always placed a big emphasis on making sure our employees feel valued.
Each week, we celebrate and reward employees for a job well-done through peer nominations and prizes at our company-wide meeting. But this year, the Culture Club led an initiative to shake this up. Introducing, the Throne Chair …
In addition to receiving a prize, our weekly winners get the chance to sit back in the Throne Chair and live like royalty for the week with a stash of sweets, beverages and an early finish on a day of their choosing. A bit of fun but another great example of our team doing their bit to make a difference to the business and its culture.
5. We’re empowering our team to make a difference to the causes they care about.
Not only are we encouraging people to make a difference to the business, we’re also supporting them in championing the causes they care about.
Each year, we give our staff a CSR day to dedicate to a cause of their choice. This year, we’ve seen employees do everything from mentoring local school pupils through The Access Project to hosting cocktail parties in care homes with Magic Me.
We also support ad-hoc initiatives. Earlier this month, for example, we downed tools to raise awareness of the gender pay gap on Equal Pay Day.