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Want to foster talent? Encourage people to be themselves

Why it’s important to encourage an authentic culture of learning, challenge and reward, and a working environment where people can just enjoy being themselves.

Building and scaling a team, beyond the founding members, is the backbone of bringing the persona of your business to life. Think about it; every person brings not only a set of valuable skills to your business but their own visions, perspectives, personality, passions and energy.

And as your business grows, ultimately, it’s the collective of people that embody, shape and drive how the public, your customers and future employees perceive the business. That’s why it’s critical to get the right mix of people from the start – and make people and culture a priority.

Here’s an example: at The Lumery, we’re redefining how data and tech are used to deliver rich, meaningful customer experiences. And we believe it’s our people that make that difference, not just the nuts and bolts of technology. That’s why, when we’re recruiting, we don’t just look for skill, talent and cultural fit.

We look for people who are genuinely excited about what we do and want to be part of our journey. We also ensure that during our onboarding process we communicate what The Lumery stands for in the industry, and how nurturing and valuing individual talent is our priority.

Celebrating diversity and different perspectives

A working culture that nurtures talent is built on celebrating diversity and inclusiveness. Diversity brings different perspectives to problem solving, which ultimately drives innovative solutions for clients and helps accelerate business outcomes.

At The Lumery, we’ve worked hard to ensure our team is representative of our customers, our society and our vision for the future. There’s a 50/50 split of genders across the business, including our management and leadership team.

We’re also strong advocates of women in technology and some of our key hires have come from actively scouting through women in technology groups and networks.

Fostering an environment where people can be themselves

It’s important to take the time to craft and review internal policies, guidelines and procedures to help drive a culture of respect for each other’s ideas, while fostering innovation, collaboration, creativity and learning. These frameworks need to be communicated clearly so they are well understood by everyone within the organisation.

Even a simple ‘no devices at meetings’ policy, which we recently implemented, helps ensure we’re fully present and everyone’s time is respected. When everyone is attentive and engaged, chances are we’re driving creative thinking.

It’s also important to give freedom to people to just be themselves, to grow and be great. It’s about creating a working environment that encourages authenticity, breaks down old ‘silos’ of thinking and adds an element of fun, curiosity, energy and dynamism into the mix.

For instance, we adopted a quarterly focus earlier this year, where ramping our people and culture initiatives was top of our priority list.

We invited every ‘Lume’ to bring fresh ideas that could impact every touchpoint of our employee and customer interactions. It was a fun yet powerful way to refine our internal staff value proposition – and align everyone’s vision of what being an ‘employer of choice’ means.

Boredom is the boardroom’s fault

The worst thing that can happen within an organisation is when someone leaves because they’re bored. That’s why the onus is on the C-suite to create a clear structure on how to measure performance and develop the right frameworks that help individuals reach their particular goals.

Whether that is learning a new skill, reaching new project targets or leading a team, your talent need to know they’re working for a company that actually cares, values their growth, actively listens and sees them as a ‘human’ with individual needs, not just a ‘human resource’.

And there’s no room for complacency. Learning and development structures and talent nurture frameworks constant review, evaluation and evolution, especially as a business continues to grow.

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