93% of staff feel Equilibrium is ‘nailing’ working from home
Equilibrium Financial Planning recently announced a series of measures it had put in place to ensure that its advisers and wider team would feel supported, safe and happy throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
Equilibrium has built itself a reputation since being founded in 1995 for its robust culture, and at the outset of the pandemic, founder Colin Lawson spoke about how the company would be maintaining its strong focus on staff wellbeing.
The resultant working from home pivot strategy saw the company introduce initiatives such as care packages mailed out to team members, FaceTime medical appointments with doctors if required, lunchtime meditation sessions, remote working ‘bibles’ and more.
Now, in an effort to refine and keep the working from home engagement offering relevant, managing partner Gaynor Rigby has circulated a ‘happiness survey’ to all staff – with responses demonstrating the importance of businesses prioritising staff wellness through periods of uncertainty and crisis.
“We have always taken a data-driven approach to our company culture; it’s never been ‘finger in the air’,” explained Gaynor. “Our core focus has been around building a strategy which is relevant to our team members and genuinely supports their professional and personal goals – so, rather than putting a ball pit in the office, listening to what they need and tailoring the offering around them.
“We extended the same principles to our COVID-19 remote working engagement strategy, and the results of the survey demonstrate how effective this method is. We had an 81% response rate, with 92% of staff surveyed saying we are ‘nailing’ looking after their wellbeing and 93% expressing that they feel ‘well supported’.
“We also had 79% stating that we had put the right measures in place so that they felt ‘absolutely connected’ to their colleagues during this time period, with the remaining 21% agreeing but stating that generally speaking, staying connected feels difficult when working from home.
“Many people will be feeling demotivated, overwhelmed and anxious at the minute – we’ve been reminding our team that those are completely normal emotions to be experiencing. What’s important is that we as a business support them as best we can and help to make their lives a little easier where possible.”
Gaynor notes that the results from a commercial standpoint are testament to the effectiveness of Equilibrium’s COVID-19 approach.
“We’ve always been big believers in the fact that taking care of your staff leads to a stronger, more resilient business – and we were interested to see how it would play out with all the team working remotely. Going the extra mile for our employees during the crisis has meant that, resultantly, they have gone the extra mile for our clients, which is a brilliant outcome.
“Our advisers have been voluntarily giving up their weekends and their free time to tend to clients’ needs, and have been doing regular check-ins with our most vulnerable clients to see if there’s anything they need to help alleviate feelings of isolation for them.
“It goes to show that dedicating time and resources to well-planned, well-executed employee engagement strategies will always be the right thing to do, in every sense.”
Equilibrium’s dedicated Culture team has also been keeping staff morale high by introducing activities such as weekly virtual bingo, ‘spin the wheel’ – which gives staff the name of a randomly-generated team member to call or FaceTime – and sending out pick-me-ups such as small plants and positivity pins.
“Our ‘why’ as a business – our core purpose, which we value above all else – is making people’s lives better. That extends to our clients, our staff and our local community,” added Gaynor. “It feels more important now than ever.”
Below are some of the words which describe how the team are currently feeling.