THERE were bands to watch, art classes, escape rooms and leadership sessions to attend.
So far, it sounds like a relatively normal conference but, in this particular instance, the entire event was hosted on a world-class virtual platform, bringing leaders in multiple countries into one live virtual room to deliver strategy updates and have fun with the global team. Why? Because, building that sense of togetherness in the middle of the pandemic, was even more important than ever.
‘We are convinced that, despite a growing trend for home-working, as humans, we are at our best when we have the opportunity to interact and experience things with one another,’ explained LC Interactive’s people experience specialist Ceri Riddett. ‘This was why it was so important that we partnered with a provider who used the latest technology to deliver our virtual experience. We know that a happy environment gives people the opportunity to create innovation and build relationships. Our challenge was to do this in an online world.
‘While we normally hold an in-person conference each year to strengthen our culture, last year we had to switch to a Netflix-style version to ensure that we retained that sense of togetherness, while the leaders of the business were able to talk about the company’s strategy and reinforce the values and cultural energy. Just because world travel had slowed down didn’t mean we were going to and we found new ways of delivering our biggest business event.
‘The pandemic has brought us all new challenges, both professionally and personally, but it has also brought a huge amount of opportunity to do things differently and has created a space for people to think about what they are doing and what they want to be doing.’
Running the Jersey-based hub of this global online media business is director Daniel Lezala who, in the two and a half years since the company’s launch, has seen his team grow to 11 people.
‘While the company is relatively young, it is hugely ambitious. We are operating in a highly competitive market, building world-class products and specialising in affiliate marketing,’ explained Ceri. ‘The business is growing rapidly and, in fact, we have a roadmap to triple the size of our Jersey team by the end of 2022.’
Ceri’s move to LC Interactive was triggered by lockdown.
‘As it did for many people, lockdown made me assess where I was and what I was doing when I saw an opportunity for a role which talked about people experience and global reach,’ she explained. ‘I’ve had a successful career with several local businesses but I was really keen to work for a business that would give me the opportunity to effectively relearn my specialism.
‘The world is changing, and that means that HR is changing as well. Despite this, a lot of business processes and methods are built around outdated HR practices, which means that a lot of them are no longer fit for purpose or representative of the way in which people want to work today.
‘Working in a start-up environment with a people-first focus gives you the ability to experiment without fear of failure and make changes quickly to facilitate people’s needs while ensuring that all business and legislative needs are met.’
‘Our ambition is to create an opportunity that is truly diverse and unique to the local market. In essence, we’re giving people the chance to learn about, and succeed in, an industry that is relatively underrepresented in Jersey and to be part of a workplace that gives people the best possible space to grow and develop their skills,’ she said. ‘Being a new business, you are continually stretched in your career growth as the mindset is one of building, improving and challenge. There is always something new to deliver or a solution to be worked through.
‘Our environment is fast-paced and, at times, demanding, which brings energy and passion to the forefront of everything we do. The reason this is so successful for us is because we all share a joint purpose and are clear on what we are collectively achieving. We also make sure that fun is on the agenda to give us all the downtime we need to be our best. We share our common interests within the team, whether that be volunteering days, new experiences or sharing our passion for great food.
‘We are looking for legends. It’s a bold title but one that relates not just to the pursuit of world-class products and experiences, but also to our support of one another. No one has all the answers but our supporting team spirit means that we have fun finding them.’
Ceri’s words sum up the company’s four values, which revolve around teamwork, fun, growth and delivery.
‘We know that collaboration, shared experience and belief are critical to delivering our work so we are looking for people who are confident in their craft and able to add value to our discussions,’ she said. ‘Equally important is a sense of fun and positivity. Even if something goes wrong, we look for a solution so that we get a positive outcome from that failure. By doing this, we are constantly growing and developing our skills, both individually and collectively. And that enables us to deliver world-class services. We will always push the boundaries to ensure a high-quality end product.’
Interestingly, for a company which focuses on the online world, the business places a strong emphasis on the value of having a hub. Indeed, the team is currently finalising the details of a move to larger premises to accommodate its growing workforce.
‘While we have a remote-first approach due to our global reach, having a physical hub is vital for the human side of life, spending time with each other, sharing ideas and innovating,’ said Ceri.
‘Without a hub, we also believe you limit your talent pool, as a huge number of people, for a variety of reasons, don’t want to, or cannot, work at home all day, every day. Work is a hugely important part of people’s social network and providing a hub brings to life different personalities and characteristics that you don’t get to use in other environments. It also provides the flexibility that many want, with the option to work both at home and from a social environment.’
As talk turns to recruitment, is Ceri confident that the people they are looking for are in the Island?
‘We know the skills and talent we are looking for are in Jersey,’ she said. ‘Our challenge is to reassure people that they can follow the same career path with us that they would in a law firm or financial institution. In fact, by coming to work for a forward-thinking, high-growth organisation, the opportunities will be even greater because it presents new projects, new ideas and new challenges at a pace that is high and hugely rewarding.’
Building that career path is also, says Ceri, critical for those who choose to come to LCI.
‘I think there is this myth that people today will only stay in a job for a couple of years,’ she explained. ‘However, I strongly believe that if you provide accountability, autonomy and flexibility in the roles you have and articulate a clear career plan with clear guidance on the potential for earnings, you create excitement and engagement about the opportunities the business can offer. By being clear on how people as individuals will grow and expand their knowledge and skills, they are much more likely to stay with you and enjoy the progressive experience with the business.’