The competition was fierce at this year’s UK Business Awards, and I would like to say huge congratulations to the winners of gold, silver and bronze and to all businesses that made it to the finals. I had the honour of being Chair of Judges for the Best Place to Work category.So, we had to ask ourselves what makes a great place to work? This is not as easy to define as you might first imagine. Is it a nice physical environment, terms and conditions, espoused and lived values, teamwork, a supportive coaching environment? It is none of these individually, rather an emergent property of all of these individual characteristics and more.
I and my fellow judges were presented with very worthy finalists who touched, moved and inspired us with their work and passion to place the development of people, the work environment and staff well-being at the heart of their business strategy.
Not only did Strata, a homebuilder in Yorkshire and in the Midlands, win the Best Place to Work award but also the best Customer Centric Organisation for Digital Initiatives and Overall Winner.
“Our purpose is to create a place for people to live, learn and dream.” -- Strata
Central to each of the entries was a commitment to transparency, particularly management trustworthiness to be honest with staff about the business challenges and how management and teams can mobilise to face them together as one. This collaborative atmosphere had a hugely positive impact on the business, customers, and equally important, on employees – their professional and personal lives.
(Judges for Best Place to Work L-R: Clare Elliott, Ali Stewart, Stephen Parry, Helen Gribble, and Sara Andrews)
Those finalists at the UK Business Awards demonstrate what can happen when organisations engage the willing contribution of staff where respect, inspiration and encouragement are all part of the equation for success -- truly inspiring!
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