Core values: People are more than just resources

Jess Thompson
Jess ThompsonCommunications ManagerMore about Jess
People, not resources

Bannerconnect wants to be the blueprint for how to be a people-first organisation in a technology-driven industry. We often hear complaints from family and friends about work, whether it’s a micro-managing boss or a Himalayan workload. While others live in fear of Mondays, we’re passionate about building the organisation of the future. We put as much thought into nourishing the growth of an amazing workplace as we do into delivering top value to our clients. After all, one can’t exist without the other. We still have a way to go, but we’re working on getting there. We’re confident that by ensuring that we keep people at the heart of all our decisions and actions, we’ll embody the organisation of the future.

A common problem in business is that people are treated like resources. That word resources in place of people is poison to us. Our director of operations, Rutger Tuit, says “We’re very deliberate with all internal documents to stay clear of the word resources when we actually mean people. Simply put, people aren’t resources, they’re people. We find this one word discounts the talent and value of our employees, and that’s not the message we want to put across.”

Officevibe helps us monitor the wellbeing of our people and organisation and offers insights on how to make work life even better. Last year we noticed that, of the metrics Officevibe measures, our wellness scores were trailing behind. We quickly got to work figuring out how to fix that.

People, not resources

First order was to enable people who are passionate about improving wellness to draw up a plan. They established a Health Advisory Board. Our resourcefulness value also came into play here, as we used who and what we’ve got to improve. They managed to add healthier options to our cafeteria, promoted walking meetings, more regular breaks, and advocated a good night’s sleep. Next to that, we introduced anti-stress and yoga workshops, extended gym benefits, handed out pedometers for a step challenge. Telling people to make their health a priority doesn’t work.

Tweaking our culture so we’re all in it together, keeping each other accountable and helping out along the way makes it stick. We try to keep our decision process democratic when possible. Our Employee Think Tank is a meeting of representatives where nothing is off limits to challenge and propose changes.

Similarly, our core values themselves were chosen through a voting process. Giving everyone the ability to question and have a say in the direction of the company builds trust and transparency, and results in an organisation constructed by people, for people.

“Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to.” Richard Branson’s words resonate deeply with us. Our ever-evolving industry of digital media demands that we’re agile, quick-learning and highly motivated. For this reason, learning is a priority. Every employee has access to courses, books, or other resources that empower them to excel. Friday afternoons are a time for some development teams to experiment with various non-work related projects, which is key for nourishing creativity, honing skills, and staying up to date with general developments in engineering. Learning is also integral to mastery and, therefore, our evolution.

Though our core value of People differs in obvious ways from our others (mastery, resourcefulness and passion), it’s integral to how we run our company. As a data and technology company, it’s important to remember that people are at the centre of everything we do. From building tools that make the work of advertising professionals easier and more effective to creating better user experiences with advertising. It’s easy to get lost in numbers and stats in a world of data and technology; our people make the difference.

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