In a small windowless office on an industrial estate in Northampton, we began our journey with a crucial step – designing our values. Recognising that the employee feedback industry was dominated by large tech companies, we aimed to set ourselves apart by prioritising a human-centric approach.
At The People Experience Hub we designed our values at the very start of our journey, when we were just two people in a windowless office on an industrial estate in Northampton.
This was an important step in starting our company, and we believed that our Values would guide us and keep us in check.
We knew that large tech companies dominated the industry of employee feedback that we wanted to move into, and we wanted to be different, be better, and you will see in our values and our company strapline that we wanted to be human.
Our Company Strapline is: “Fundamentally Human, Enabled By Technology”
Our approach is that of course you need great technology to do the heavy lifting, it has to look good and perform well – but without the human element, it is not the answer to solving the problems we saw.
Scene set, now onto the values!
We started with the same 4 values that we have today and these are:
What did they mean to us when we set them?
We never wanted to just copy what was out there, tweak it a bit and sell a SaaS solution, so we had to Dream Big
We wanted to help organisations really transform the experience their people had at work, so we had to Dream Big
We needed our future employees to not settle for ok, we wanted them to have Big Dreams, Big Hopes and do Big Things
This is a signal to everyone who works here that they have permission to scale mountains and this takes us to our next value
Let’s face it, if you are going to stare up at a mountain and have a go, you are going to need to Be Brave!
When you are starting a new business, unless you happen to be a millionaire, then you need to Be Brave by default, but in many organisations being brave is not a requirement so we had to sign post this one.
We want our people to Be Brave, to do things that they haven’t done before or to tackle situations that are not in their comfort zone.
Naomi Tipton once said, “We will win Sainsburys as a client one day, because we will Be Brave enough to have a go”
Be Brave, also means that you have brave people around you who will help you do these things, to make a difference and have a go, which leads us to…
This is permission to have a go, permission to fail, permission to do what is needed without a long chain of decision-making floofery.
It is a call to action!
Make it happen for our clients, and be pro-active.
Sales plan? Make it Happen
Being Brave and thinking about saying hello to Sainsburys? Make it Happen
We have policies about a lot of things, but if anything is getting in the way of someone making it happen, then I really want to know – this is almost the job description of a CEO, professional hurdle remover.
Nick, what do you do for a job? I try to gently remove things that get in the way of our ability to make it happen.
The world needs more people who just do the right thing, not because there is a credit to gain or because the policy says so, but because they know in their hearts what the right thing is.
Sometimes, doing the right thing requires you to Be Brave or to Dream Big.
We are a B-Corp, because we believe that doing good in the world is the right thing to do.
For our people, I ask them to:
Do the right thing for you and your family
Do the right thing for your colleagues
Do the right thing for our clients
Do the right thing for our community
Ultimately, this is permission, over and above any policy we may have or internal process, to be authentic, be where you need to be, to be safe, to love our clients and what we do.
This Value is the foundation of all the other values and is the test of our actions, our approach to work and community.
If we had to get rid of all but one value, this is the one I would keep.
This value helps me sleep at night.
I love that in our organisation people are not always asking me for permission, they are often telling me what they will be doing, what hours they will be working, what they are prioritising and when I see this I know that our values are alive.
When someone is not doing this, then often I know that something is getting in their way, or on their mind and it helps me to ask questions about how I can help them.
Our Values guide us and for now, they work.