Employee engagement: It's a kind of magic

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Digitisation and generational evolution have fundamentally shifted the working world as we know it. Technology has blurred the lines between business life and home life. Employees are making themselves available 24/7 and business is setting unrealistic expectations. Added to this, is the complexity of a suppressed market where businesses are scaling down on resources and expecting more output from fewer people. The pressure to put work above all else is intense.

Company culture has never been more imperative as a motivation lever and a retention mechanism.

It is the key ingredient to achieving exponential growth and real strategy execution. As they say, “Nothing great was ever achieved by one person”. If business is the vehicle, people are the engine.

It can be gut wrenching when you invest heavily in people with performance training, knowledge-share, mentorship and business IP, only to have to do it all over again when an employee leaves. A recent survey by Gallup shows that the least ‘engaged’ employee is the one that leaves and other research shows that an ‘engaged workforce’ is likely to have 37% lower absenteeism, 22% higher profitability, and 21% higher productivity.

But what is this elusive concept called engagement? According to Gallup, it isn’t high performance that determines engagement, it’s a blend of different factors throughout the business that keeps people inspired and wanting to contribute meaningfully.

There is a kind of magic that attracts people to an organisation and the same magic that keeps them there. At Trackmatic we call it TrackMagic. The truth is that what attracts people to Trackmatic is a compelling vision and endless quest to push the boundaries of what is possible in the industry. What keeps people are the small things that most companies overlook; the ability for people to bring all of who they are to the business, their passions their hobbies and their quirks.

Trackmatic is not an easy place to work, in fact it’s hard. It is fast-paced, highly agile and highly output-driven and meeting high expectations is the norm, it pushes people to their edge. It requires self-driven and independent individuals who are willing to take ownership of projects and go for it! It’s a place where people are challenged to give their best all the time and to take risks and learn from mistakes. It’s an environment of continuous innovation and experimentation, a place where decisions are made swiftly and executed in the shortest possible time frame.

Yet we have created an environment that helps people to unlock and unleash their magic and a space for continuous inspiration that stretches people beyond their comfort zones.

In 2019 we hired a Biker, a DJ, a paramedic, a coach and a baker… who also happen to be exceptional software engineers and supply chain implementors.

How do we know? Because we found out what they were doing after hours and paid attention to what they enjoyed. Our software engineers don’t just create technology, they change lives every day. They also all have multiple personalities. Nobody has just one side to who they are and a culture that allows people to flex their mental muscles and explore the different sides of their personality and skillsets is exactly the kind of culture that keeps people.

Our approach to employee engagement actively encourages people to develop their skills, do new things, find exciting projects and challenge their talent. This is critical for their own wellbeing and has the added benefit of adding value to the business. In fact, having people with varied skills and abilities adds a dynamic to the organisation that allows for improved insight and innovation. When different eyes from different walks of life approach a project, they all see different things. This means that they can identify problems or challenges that others may have missed and, by working together from various perspectives, add value where none was seen before.

Trackmatic has grown exponentially over the last two years, and our team has almost trebled in size. With this type of growth comes the need to find the right individuals to drive the strategy and support the business in achieving its goals. After all, being a disruptive software development company requires individuals who share in our vision and passion. As entrepreneurial businesses expand, there is always a real danger of the culture being diluted. There is also the eternal and adverse challenge of scaling the business without compromising on the founding culture.

When joining Trackmatic, a potential employee is faced with a fork in the road and the choice is up to them, one path is familiar and well-worn and the other is the road less travelled. Taking the road less travelled is not for everyone, it is for those who choose to be remarkable and reject the average. As pathfinders, this is the path that we have chosen. Finding the right people to journey with is not always easy.

Developing the TrackMagic Way, which permeates the DNA of our business, helps us to better assess whether a future employee embodies the qualities of a TrackMagic Maker by sharing in our values, ethos and philosophy. People and relationships drive everything we do, and we use the same approach with talent acquisition.

We want to show people that we understand their needs and care enough to create an environment that facilitates that fulfilment. A place of work not only has to provide a sense of security and purpose but needs to be a place that inspires people and a place that people want to run to everyday.

By Danielle Afriat, Executive: Strategy & Implementation at Trackmatic

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