It's 29th May 2020 - and it's "The rise and rise of the FVP."
I am a big fan of building a trusted support network. An inner circle if you like. People who respect you and know you well enough to be courageous with the way they communicate with you. People who tell you how it is.
A few years ago I worked with an Exec Coach, I am still in touch with him and regularly go for a bite to eat or a beer. Two days before lockdown, he said to me “JT, you’re going to have to make some tough calls in the weeks and months ahead."
"People will remember the way that you make them feel”.
When we defined our Lockdown MO, we put Employee and Furloughee engagement as the first point on our Operational Board Agenda, with “Internal Comms” being the final point on the same agenda, it actually comes after AOB to ensure that we end the meeting aligned and in agreement on what and how we will communicate and when we will do it.
We meet three times a week as an Ops Board, so morale and engagement are front, middle and centre of our strategy.
I am not saying we’re perfect. I am sure that we have made mistakes. But we, like everyone else out there, are doing our best. Everyone is different too, so what works for one individual doesn’t necessarily work for another.
I am delighted with the morale and camaraderie shown by the Macildowie staff who have been ‘at’ work since Lockdown began. We named ourselves ‘The Macsketeers’ on day one… “all for one and one for all” felt very appropriate given that we have some brilliantly talented people at home on furlough and the success achieved as a group would be a factor in determining bringing other team members back from furlough. We are bringing our Business Director, Dan Riley, back on Monday 1st June as his Construction market is showing more than green shoots with housebuilders back at work.
Getting back to “people remember the way that you make them feel”.
It’s a pretty great guiding principle in times like these. And it’s why I believe that it is important for Business Leaders to define their FVP… a new three-letter acronym… FURLOUGHEE VALUE PROPOSITION.
Yes, you read it correctly, the FURLOUGHEE VALUE PROPOSITION. I googled it, and there are no matches at the moment, but hopefully, this blog changes all that.
Now I guess that we all hope that it isn’t actually a thing for too much longer as we’d all like to get out of lockdown and back to work in order to avoid a bad recession... but it is a real thing in my opinion, and it might just be THE THING that prevents a company from bouncing back.
We all know the phrase, “culture eats strategy for breakfast”.
Boards all around the globe are building their “New World Strategy”, but without engaging those vital team members who will be returning to work in the coming months, there might be businesses whose culture does in fact eat their strategy before even passing GO.
That’s a scary thought. But it’s food for thought. And it’s not too late as we still have two full months of ‘full’ furlough and we’ll find out in the next few days what the plans are for August, September and October.
So the FVP is a key strategic consideration for at least 5 more months.
I have spoken to hundreds of people from my garden office over the past ten weeks and we have also produced a coronavirus, business continuity, pulse survey to help us to help our clients with the question “what are other businesses doing right now?”.
If you’d like to receive this information and insight once it has been aggregated, we’re sending it to those who have completed the survey a week before it is fully released – please click here to complete.
As a six times, Sunday Times Best Company To Work For, we have been recognised for the level of employee engagement we have generated here at Macildowie. Without going into our full FVP in this blog, I wanted to share a couple of ideas with you:
- We have procured a best in class, on-line training programme for every member of staff, at work or furloughed.
- We have delivered an Insights Discovery Light session entitled “You Time” with a professional facilitator and Insights Practitioner.
- We have partnered with an Emotional Health expert to deliver a diagnostic tool for individuals to complete on-line to assess their own emotional wellbeing.
- We had already invested in an Employee Assistance Programme, meaning that anyone who might be struggling with COVID-19 and Lockdown has a professional Counselling Service at their fingertips.
- We have continued to carry out ZOOM gym/HIIT sessions three times a week for all employees.
- Two weeks ago we held The Macildowie Lockdown Ball, our Masters of Ceremonies for the evening were two of our amazing Furloughees, the Macildowie Ant and Dec as they have become known.
- We have continued to hold Friday beers and quizzes.
- We have recently partnered with a number of other organisations to make wellbeing, mindfulness and L&D opportunities readily available.
- Most importantly we are carrying out one to ones regularly because people want to hear from their Manager.
At Macildowie we pride ourselves on being professionally curious, and on delivering elements of our service at no charge. Whilst Recruitment is what ‘pays the bills’ we also have a passion for helping people and companies with their ‘Retention Strategy’ and that’s why we urge everyone to define their FVP before too much longer.
We host a series of Forums for MD/CEO, FD/CFO and HR Leaders to share best practice in a virtual networking environment. Employee and furloughee engagement will inevitably become a hotter topic over the coming weeks, so please come along, we'd love to see you.
Finally, I’d like to show my gratitude to The Universe for making the last 10 weeks of Lockdown so much easier by delivering us the warmest Spring ever! We’ve been so lucky with the weather.
If you have any questions please contact us by clicking here.
I hope to see you at one of our Leadership Forums in the near future.