Nurturing Company Culture in a Remote-First Environment
The traditional working landscape, which consisted of an office based 9-5, has evolved significantly in recent times, with remote and hybrid working policies becoming standard practice. While this shift has brought about newfound efficiencies and flexibility, it has also posed a challenge; how do we maintain a strong company culture in this remote world?
Here at Pro, we have embraced the shift towards remote working, implementing a hybrid working set-up, with our teams collaborating ‘in house’ on average once a week. Pre-pandemic, we thrived on offering our teams a vibrant company culture, and despite our now largely remote working setup, we continue to make it a priority to find new and innovative ways to foster team unity, collaboration, and employee engagement.
Elevating Employee Engagement Through Social Events
Our people are our most valuable asset, and our strong team culture is one of the standout elements enabling us to attract the best talent. One of the ways in which with we seek to elevate our team engagement, beyond the boundaries of the formal work setting, is through delivering regular and diverse social events which foster strong relationships amongst our teams.
Most recently, we hosted our annual summer party at Flight Club darts, where the whole team got together for a day filled with bottomless food, drinks, laughter and some seriously competitive interactive darts (For those wondering, my team won!!). We also host Quarterly breakfast clubs at upscale venues like The Delaunay and HIDE, where our teams get the opportunity to get together and enjoy an array of unique breakfast experiences, whilst easing into their working day in style.
Motivating Teams with High Achiever Celebrations
Each quarter we facilitate a Premier Club to recognise the high achievers amongst each of our teams, presenting another opportunity to bring people together. For Q1 we organised an activity-based event, starting our afternoon off at Clays (link), followed by a delicious meal at The Lowback and a wrap up session at Electric Shuffle, where those less proficient at Clay shooting certainly made their comeback. For Q2 we opted for a more serene experience, where our top performers were treated to a boat trip across the Thames, followed by a suitably superfluous lunch at Rick Stein Barnes with some Instagram worthy river views.
Above and beyond these quarterly Prem Clubs, we also host an annual high achiever away trip. For 2023, we decided to mix it up and move away from our traditional Ski trips to chase some much needed sun in Lisbon. Those who joined enjoyed 4 days of fun, including activities such as paddle boarding, morning yoga, a boat trip and some delicious evening banquets, where individuals were able to come together in a relaxed setting, encouraging genuine interactions and deeper connections to be formed.
Coming Together in Aid of a Good Cause
Supporting our community and causes is important to all of us at Pro. For 2023, we have chosen to support Child Bereavement UK (CBUK) as our charity partner. CBUK help families rebuild their lives when a child grieves, or a child dies, and is a cause particularly close to our hearts.
Our team have come together to participate in several events in aid of CBUK, which have not only raised more than £4,000, but have supported their physical and mental wellbeing, emphasising fitness and teamwork through events like the Hackney Half Marathon and the upcoming Tough Mudder Crawley (Don’t forget to donate). We also had an incredible turnout at both our charity bingo night and our annual Christmas Quiz, all of which contributed to our charitable cause, whilst reinforcing a sense of shared purpose throughout the company.
Strengthening Client and Candidate Relationships in a Virtual World
As a recruiter, building a strong rapport with both clients and candidates is key, particularly now that there is the added complication of ‘catching them on their office days’ when considering in-person meet ups and events.
One approach we have found successful is to set up short engagement trips, where we visit multiple clients and candidates across specific regions over a 1– 2-day period, allowing us to demonstrate a commitment to face-to-face engagement regardless of physical distance. Most recently, Jenna and I took to Manchester and Birmingham on a 2-day visit, where we were able to meet with numerous clients and candidates, as well as benefitting from some invaluable team collaboration on several ongoing projects.
We are also proactive in investing in our clients and candidates’ professional growth by hosting educational events, which create opportunities for CPD as well as professional in-person engagement. Our highly successful Pathway to Partner event launched in June 2023, featuring expert panellists from industry-leading firms such as; Deloitte, Haysmacintyre, Rawlinson & Hunter and Haines Watts, who advised future stars of the industry on their journey to Partnership. Not only did this event provide invaluable insights, but it also showcased our commitment to investing in our candidates’ career trajectories.
Maintaining Focus on Employee Preferences in this New Working Climate
Understanding employee preferences is crucial in navigating the nuances of remote work and hybrid setups for both Pro and our clients. A recent LinkedIn poll of our network (link) revealed that 67% of respondents prefer a hybrid work arrangement, striking a balance between remote and office-based work, with an inclination towards more home-based working. These results reinforced to us that a hybrid working model continues to resonate with the evolving desires of the workforce.
The Key to Maintaining Culture in a Remote World
I strongly believe that the success we have achieved in maintaining a thriving company culture amid remote working is a result of our commitment to employee engagement and fostering strong team relationships. By facilitating a variety of events that cater to different interests, nurturing in-person client interactions, and prioritising education and career development, we have enabled our company culture to flourish, regardless of the working setup.
How has the move from in-person to remote translated in your working environment? To discuss this article in more detail, or for help finding the right working environment for you, get in touch with one of our team today.