At Transformational CMO Assembly this week, we heard from keynote speakers Miki Racine Berardelli, CEO of KIDBOX, and Eileen Campbell, founder of Womintuition, as they shared their experiences as marketing leaders transitioning to business leaders.
When asked how many of the CMOs present at the event cared for and worked on company culture, 90% of the audience shot their hands up in the air. And the road from CMO to CEO has never been smoother.
Digital is disrupting the workforce.
Technology is disrupting our lives and changing day-to-day functions, whether at home, at work or socially. In terms of the workforce, technology is driving businesses to distinguish and emphasize how they differ from their competitors.
Employees with high-value skill sets bring an extra level of competition between companies going after that top talent. Today, that battle is often decided on culture, workplace benefits and brand perception.
Keep workplace benefits in line with changing employee values.
C-level leaders are looking for ways to create cultures of innovation, and this should start with opening lines of communication with employees or “internal customers.” High-performing organizations build employee-centric communities within their businesses.
You need to start monitoring employee trends just as you monitor consumer trends, especially as new generations start to enter the workforce. Data and analytics will help you stay on top of changing values between different generations. Employees want more than just great compensation.
Millennials have already impacted workplace culture significantly. They expect employers to match their values, especially when it comes to benefits. Millennials crave benefits that enable them to prioritize family, whether that is flexible working hours or investment options.
Despite a reputation for job-hopping, loyalty matters to millennials. This loyalty presents itself in many ways, but most importantly through benefits and personalized training. Just as consumers crave personalized experiences, so too do employees. Again, this is where digital technology holds its own. Empowering employees to pick and choose training relevant to their needs and desired growth personalizes the experience and motivates that growth.
The importance of social impact cannot be underestimated. The consumer trend for authentic brand experience aligns closely with what we see from millennials today. Employees want to work for companies that share their own values, just as consumers want to purchase from brands that care about the same things they do.
Turn your employees into fans.
Perception of your brand will be vital in winning the battle for top talent. Just as you would use influencer marketing to encourage purchase, you can use employee marketing to draw talent to your business.
Make your employees your fans. As fans, they’ll actively share and promote your company. This will massively stack the odds in your favor when it’s come to the battle for top talent.
To do this, start by creating and owning your mission statement. This mission should seep into the everyday culture of the workplace. Use marketing technology to send regular internal updates to your employees. Transparency empowers employees and makes them feel valued.
The opportunity to provide feedback is also extremely important when it comes to turning your employees into fans. Employees want to feel part of the decision making process. Knowing their voice is heard leads to empowerment, which in turn creates fans.
One great way to engage your employees is by using digital technology to essentially “gamify” the workplace. Gamification has been a growing HR trend for some time. Essentially, the employee can gain points or win rewards for undertaking certain activities. Gamification is win-win. For marketers, it encourages the employees to share their experiences, helping promote the brand. For employees, it’s fun and different. For businesses, it motivates employees by rewarding them for learning new skills and behaviors.
Organize for growth.
Marketers are now tasked with equipping their organizations for growth, so much so that the language of business is changing to incorporate marketing terms.
As marketing increasingly drives business strategy and shifts corporate culture, effective collaboration with other functions, such as sales, IT, HR and finance, is imperative. Breaking down organizational silos is the first step. This need for a collaborative culture of innovation, along with changing employee values, will be a significant driver of corporate culture change.
Departmental talent exchanges are a creative way to share skills and ideas across functions and will lead to collaboration. Not only does it help break down barriers (in both a physical and symbolic sense), but it also helps engage the individual employee, places value on their skill set and gives them experience in another function.
The CMO has led the shift to consumer centricity; now they are best placed to lead the workplace culture shift to employee-centric.