Why our culture day is my favourite day of the year

23rd November, 2016

Recently I was given the opportunity to present our vision, our culture, and the MYOB Way to new people in the business – and it was one of my favourite days of the year.

Aside from having the opportunity to meet all the wonderful new people joining the team at MYOB, it gives me a chance to share my passion for helping clients and the way we work to help them succeed.

I often talk about our ‘true north’ as a company. This is the point on the horizon that we’re aiming for, what we’re driving towards and what informs our journey.

For us, our true north is to simply help businesses succeed.

We do this by creating intelligent, intuitive tools which makes life for our clients easier.

We do this because we know that business isn’t just business, it’s personal.

But these are more than just words on a poster to us – they’re the guiding principles that shape our everyday experience and way of working.

It informs our values and the MYOB experience.

Giving our new employees an understanding of the things that drive everything we do is imperative, but it’s not a one-way conversation.

When I first entered the workforce, there were strong walls around companies.

Messages were managed and the culture of the organisation (the way things work on the inside) could be quite different than the brand (the experience delivered to the outside).

Those days are done.

People – whether they are team members, suppliers, clients, partners – look for businesses that are authentic, true to who they say they are.

Culture days enable the CEO, right from the start, to lead by example and explain in their own words how they live the vision and values of the company.

Unless it’s a two-way conversation though, it’s just my vision instead of a shared one.

We know that strong teams are made up of highly motivated people, aligned around a common destination and using common values to drive a plan to reach that destination.

For a person who is new to the business, though, it can be difficult to see how an abstract concept applies to what they do. Opening the discussion and exploring our values helps them make the connection.

With all team members aligned around our values they can make decisions faster, form effective cross-functional teams, and work efficiently.

The culture day also allowed me to outline the strategic plan to our new starters.

While this can often seem like just a bunch of figures and mission statements on a wall, I encouraged them to think about how their role fits into the plan.

I believe it is much better to motivate people to want to do more, and that requires creating meaning and purpose in their work.

By showing our new starters how they help us help businesses succeed, they can find meaning and motivation in their work.

We’ve brought in the new people because we know they’ll be good at what they do. They are all employed with us because they have the skills, mindset and aptitude to help us on our journey.

It is only through a shared vision that all these talents start pulling in the same direction and helping each other towards a common purpose to ultimately find satisfaction in their work.

That’s what excites me – having a vision with clients at the centre and a team of fantastic people pulling in the same direction to help them succeed.