Thursday, 4th October 2018

The critical role of culture in forging effective partnerships

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“I have always believed that the way you treat your employees is the way they will treat your customers…” - Richard Branson.

It’s no secret that people are a company’s most important asset. They determine everything, from client experience to culture.

Luckily at FCB we have always managed to sustain an awesome culture. But there’s no secret formula. We work hard to keep it that way.

The difference comes from our agency values, along with years of dedication, time and effort invested into making sure that the people-first culture continues to flourish.

This cultural well-being not only benefits the team but our clients too. Having happy, engaged people encourages employee loyalty which reduces turnover and leads to more continuity for our clients.

It also boosts productivity and enables us to attract the right new talent, meaning we can deliver the most efficient and effective work. These benefits have allowed us to forge strong collaborative partnerships which is highlighted in the long tenure of many of our accounts and regular client surveys.

Understanding the importance of our people has led us to creating three people related work groups. They are managed by volunteers from all levels across the agency who are passionate about protecting and growing our culture.

The groups facilitate a yearly programme of initiatives focussing on our social community, culture and diversity and overall wellness. The annual staff engagement survey provides them with invaluable insights and guides the activities.

Feedback from the 2017 survey showed that a healthy, balanced lifestyle is important to our staff. This has led to an agency emphasis on healthier food and drink and overall wellness.

Since the survey we have introduced a nutritious continental breakfast three mornings a week, healthier drink options in the staff café and a range of wellbeing activities such as yoga, boot camp and mindfulness sessions.

These additional activities support the already established FCB sports teams such as, soccer and touch rugby. Not forgetting the highly competitive ongoing table tennis tournament which has become an integral part of agency culture.

Being a large agency we have a diverse workforce and our Cultural and Inclusions committee work hard to ensure that that diversity is reflected in the initiatives they run. This year they will introduce the ‘Buddy Programme’ which will focus on supporting a smooth transition into the agency for new starters.

As an integrated agency we are naturally collaborative in our work and our Shits n Gigs committee provides opportunities for us to get together socially too. The agency always finds a reason to socialise from mid-winter Christmas to Oktoberfest as well as weekly get togethers such as the Monday morning ‘Gathering’ and Friday afternoon cheeseboard.

Yet, the most important social event of the year has to be the agency’s Draftie Awards. Now in its sixth year the event acknowledges FCB’s most outstanding people, those who embody our values and go above and beyond.

In an awards-focussed industry, the Drafties give us the opportunity to recognise everyone, not just those who have been at the forefront of successful advertising campaigns. Embraced by the whole agency, they celebrate the one thing that makes FCB what it is, its people.

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