News Article ————

Workplace Culture: The single most important ingredient for commercial success

Author image Published by [email protected]
Published Date 15.04.2024

Workplace culture is not just about perpetuating the old mantra, “our people are our greatest asset”, it’s about making those people feel that they actually are.

For the Aspect team, being recognised by the UK Company Culture Awards judges in this year’s shortlist is a celebration – richly deserved – of all the hard work and dedication they bring to work every day. For me personally, it’s validation of a leadership style I have always believed to be the most effective, both in running a successful business and allowing the people who make it successful to thrive.

I joined Aspect nine months after it was founded in 1998 as one of its first employees, fresh out of university. 26 years later, it has evolved into a thriving events business full of hard- working and talented people I am proud to call my colleagues. I’ve met hundreds of people, run hundreds of events, and learned countless valuable lessons in that time but at its core, my approach to workplace culture has stayed the same throughout.

For me, everything starts with good leadership. Our senior leadership team has been in place for over 25 years, providing consistency, stability, and genuine care for the business and its people. Importantly though, I know that leadership is earned, not handed to you. I was made CEO of Aspect in 2011 but the title didn’t come with instant leadership skills, I developed those myself over time with the guidance and support of my peers and my team. I made some mistakes and I learned from them – sometimes the hard way.

The most important lesson I learned is that it’s my job to set the tone for the culture I want to foster at Aspect. I know that a diverse workforce and an inclusive, respectful culture results in better work. Relatability and transparency are key. Aspect’s people deserve to know where the company is, where it’s going and how we are going to collectively achieve success. They also deserve to be listened to. Really listening is a rare skill but its influence on company culture is immeasurable. I hope the Aspect team feel I guide them with purpose but also with empathy.

As a small agency, each member of the team brings something unique to the business, and each role is pivotal to its success. Our executive team is active across all levels of the business, keeping it relevant and accessible to all. Our flat structure and supportive, low-ego culture generates empowerment among teams and individuals. We trust our people to work hard and deliver against our commercial objectives by giving them the freedom to work flexibly and achieve a healthy work-life balance.

Offering our people a positive and supportive working environment allows us to provide the best service for our clients, exceeding expectations at every turn. We live and breathe our values in all our interactions, and we are always looking for innovative ways to enhance our clients’ experience of working with us. We know that if our people are happy and feel empowered to produce exceptional work that is recognised and celebrated, there is nothing we can’t achieve as a team.

We also know that the future of our industry depends on a diverse pool of talent with distinct skills. Ensuring young people from all backgrounds have an opportunity to learn, develop and thrive in the sector is just as important to us. Our work with organisations such as Creative Access and Event Academy gives young people from under-represented groups a chance to build their confidence, make connections and develop the skills they need to progress on their chosen career path.

We really care. And we sweat the small stuff because we know it matters. To win a prize for our workplace culture at the UK Company Culture awards this year would be the icing on the cake of almost three positive decades and confirm what we’ve always known to be true: workplace culture is the backbone of any successful organisation.

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