Engaging The Team

shutterstock_361191518I was recently at a social event with one of my clients when they asked me a question which was quite unusual.

They asked “How have you managed to get everyone on board with the firm’s values? I meet lots of people and they always have the same positive things to say about PM+M!”

This got me thinking as it wasn’t the usual question about audit, tax or profit improvement that I am used to receiving from clients.

It all stems back to the partners doing an exercise to identify the firms shared values, then broadening out to the team with feedback and input from the whole PM+M team. That helped us to identify and understand our culture and the focus really began on strengthening that culture.

This then fed into making sure we stay true to the culture by driving it forward, making decisions in accordance with it and by recruiting people who we think will fit into it.

The whole firm comes together annually and are asked to split up into groups, with each group being asked to think about how they feel to work at PM+M and what they would change. From this feedback it helps the firm to re-align the culture to what we originally set out to achieve.

We have always encouraged an open culture, where everyone has a say in the business. Engaging teams so that they can celebrate and enjoy our success has meant we have a group of people who all have fun being here; a team who are enthusiastic and are proud of what they are achieving for their careers and can play a part in shaping the future of the firm.

Communication is clearly very important in all our jobs and making sure we are great at this internally as well as externally makes a significant difference. An environment where people share stories of how they have learned something different or dealt with something new has developed individuals to be commercially minded business advisers, rather than just number crunchers.

Having a team who are engaged in the business builds confidence in the leadership. We know that anyone from the team can meet a client and provide a quality and personable service.

So, even though it was an unusual question I had no hesitation in answering it and I am confident everyone else here at PM+M wouldn’t either.

I read a quote recently which sums up the above:

“If you talk, you only repeat what you already know. If you listen, you may learn something new.”

I would encourage any business owner, if practical, to take your team offsite and actually listen to what they want from you. If you can align this with your business goals, you will develop a loyal and high performing team.

Chris Johnson – Corporate Services Partner