Before I talk a little bit about Target specifically though, one more higher profile example springs to mind, and surprise, surprise, it’s in the sporting arena.
The fortunes of the England rugby team after crashing out of their home World Cup in 2015 at the group stage were well documented; much was made of Stuart Lancaster’s leadership and players who weren’t accountable – just going through the motions with no clear direction or will to win. Enter Eddie Jones stage left, and while he certainly made some personnel changes, a lot of the same players that failed in the World Cup were part of the squad that went on to win 17 consecutive games, secure a first ever series win in Australia, and take home the 2017 Six Nations title. So what was he able to harness that Lancaster wasn’t? He instilled a work ethic in the players that had apparently been lacking, was clear about what was expected of them, and communicated their ultimate goal and how they were going to get there.
While clearly the culture at Target isn’t under such scrutiny on a world stage, it’s an important part of who we are as a business. We are lucky, in that although we’re a relatively small team, we work in an extremely supportive environment. This has been highlighted recently as the team is going through its yearly appraisal process during which, as well as a chance for self-reflection, the rest of the team are able to provide feedback. Some of this is based on Target’s values which were put together with input from the whole team and which cover seven areas, ranging from client satisfaction to operating with integrity. Having such a detailed set of values definitely helps me to know what’s expected, the goal we are working towards, as well as thinking about the impact that I have on the business.
Striving for excellence is the last point in our values and this couldn’t be more clearly illustrated than with our recent Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) PRide Award win for Best Publication. A truly collaborative project, Leading magazine is the quarterly publication of leadership development and strategy specialists, QuoLux. The project has seen the editorial and design teams work closely together to produce a really striking magazine that includes insight from a host of business people.
No matter the size, or age of your business, it’s clear that workplace culture has a huge impact on staff. Get it right and you’ll reap the rewards; an engaged, productive and loyal team, but get it wrong and low morale, high staff turnover and dissatisfaction are bound to follow. Ignore it at your peril.