This past Wednesday, Le Site had the great pleasure to participate in the Brand-Employer forum held by Infopresse. We were in great company at the forum, rubbing shoulders with fellow creators from Ipsos, Sid Lee, Gaz Métro, Ubisoft, and Google.
Attending a forum based on the topic of “authenticity,” we knew we would learn a great deal from our peers. We especially took an interest in the changes that are happening between corporate strategy and human resources, more specifically in the case of internal brand authenticity.
While authenticity is a broad word when it comes to brands and employers, there were four major takeaways we wanted to share with you.
1. Generation X wants stability, while Millennials feed off innovation
Ipsos research firm recently surveyed 5,000 Canadian workers as part of a quantitative study aiming to define what characteristics defined an “attractive employer” and arrived at some fairly intriguing results. For one, there was a definite split between the X and Y generations when it comes to what makes an appealing workplace.
Enterprises that encourage going above and beyond and house inspiring leaders in their field were the utmost importance for Millennials. Within innovative companies that allow them to grow, like Uber, Netflix, and Cirque du Soleil, they feel that their ideas and work are nurtured. Millennials also tend to favor companies that have a finger on the pulse of their generation like Facebook and Twitter.
On the other end of the spectrum, Generation X gravitated to companies that gave the promise of stability and great health benefits. They also went for positions at associations that they held a pre-existing an emotional connection with. It’s no wonder there would be an emotional attachment to companies like Air Canada, most Provincial Governments, and Walt Disney Pictures!
2. We must focus on the importance of an authentic company culture
A low staff turnover rate is often a source of pride (or defeat) for many managers and human resource professionals. It’s particularly difficult to anticipate in the technology sector, as this KPI should, in theory, be close to 0%. Mission impossible, would you say? It’s exactly what software company Mirego has achieved over the last five years. Sébastien Morin, strategy and user experience VP, told us how the enterprise made it happen.
Define your mission and values clearly
To go beyond your vision, make sure that recruits embody your company values and your team passes it on! When doing interviews, do not forget to ask yourself the most crucial question: “Will they love working here?”
Create a desirable working environment
A desirable environment for workers was a concept that was echoed in both Mirego and Google’s presentations. Don’t worry, there’s no need to install a rock climbing wall in your office! Buy lunch for your employees from time to time, allow a recruit to choose between a Mac or PC, or organize volleyball or NHL tournaments…often, it’s the little things that count!
Aim for autonomy and trust
Mirego encourages autonomy and trust in its employees through telecommuting and flex work. The enterprise encourages the use of Slack (an intelligent chat software) or Basecamp (an online collaborative workspace), which simplify internal relations. Two tools that we know very well at Le Site!
Share your knowledge
Mirego employees recently joined forces to develop Never Work a Day, a Web-based platform meant to showcase the brand’s DNA. This project echoes Google’s 20% philosophy (which we’ll explain below).
3. CULTIVATE INNOVATION
Google and innovation go hand in hand. Jean-Philippe Gauthier, Director of media platforms at Google, advocates for a corporate culture that focuses on pushing the borders of status-quo and constant self-improvement.
Within his company, Googlers (Google employees) are invited to spend one day a week, 20 % of their work log, developing personal projects. As a matter of fact, this initiative gave birth to the Caribou project, now known as Gmail!
Gauthier also spoke of the “Moonshots” projects, describing them as, “(ideas) living in the gray area between audacious technology and pure science fiction.” Concepts like the Google Car or the ambitious Loon project, which aims to provide third-world countries with Internet coverage via inflatable balloons have come out of this initiative.
4. TRANSPARENCY IS KEY
Transparency is also a priority for the technology giant Google. Weekly meetups encourage Googlers to share their success stories and major fails to ensure transparency and collaborative learning. These gatherings also known as TGIF, at the Mountain View headquarters, are then streamed around the world. This initiative was in-line with the speech Annick Désy, Human Resources VP at Sid Lee, gave regarding their infamous Naked Lunches. These unconventional lunches are basically an unprepared Q&A with management, where (literally) any question asked, will be answered.
With a well-defined mission, stimulating workplaces and a healthy dose of trust, you’re encouraging your team to maximize their potential, as well as putting your corporate culture on the map. If you’re interested in seeing how Le Site brings all of these concepts to their offices, send us your CV!