Who remembers Monday March 30, 2020? I will never forget that Monday morning, our first agency zoom WIP offsite. As a leader in the unfolding pandemic crisis, I asked myself three questions that lockdown day, a day I shall never forget.
There were two key decisions I had made by the end of that day:
As an agency based on a deep sense of purpose and empathy for our team, it was our responsibility to ensure we supported their wellbeing, providing as much continuity and consistency as we could, just as we had done for years on end, each week, in order to provide hope during a time of uncertainty, as well as to support the continued personal and professional growth for the team. It was our goal as leaders to ensure we came through the other side, not only surviving, but thriving, with a team who felt supported as best as humanly possible within the constraints of this massive challenge, affecting us physically, mentally and financially at scale.
We increased our training spend from an average of 10+% to 20+%.
Why ramp up the investment in training and development during a Pandemic?
It is our point of view and deep experience that the acquisition of knowledge and growth, even more so during times of crisis, is empowering for our people, particularly when delivered as a team together. It builds connection, a common purpose, confidence, gives hope, drives personal growth and development. It is human nature to feel good, if we are growing, despite challenges around us. It gives us a sense of focus and control in a fluid situation and it leans into possibility for the future.
The cost to company was one of the best investments made during this time (even though it meant a deep cut in salary for some of the leadership team), but one acknowledged as one which would help our PR guns from Account Coordinators to Account Directors among others to feel a sense of belonging, to focus on possibility rather than the negativity of the situation in the moment; to understand that now was a good time to elevate focus on both personal and professional growth which would help each one traverse this time feeling empowered and uplifted, despite the increased pressures and the seeming doom and gloom at the time.
OUR VALUE IS IN OUR PEOPLE
Investment in the wellbeing and growth of our most valuable asset, our 6AM people, is core to our agency culture, has always been and will always be into the future. Continued and increased investment in training, development was one of best leadership decisions as CEO I made during the crisis, despite, the knock to the bottom line and the pressures all round.
If I had to make the decision again, I would do it all again. No doubt.
ABOUT THE 6AM ALWAYS ON TRAINING PROGRAM
Upskilling in craft:
Personal & Professional Growth Accelerators
For more information about The 6AM Agency Training & Development program including wellbeing support please email firstname.lastname@example.org – we would welcome the opportunity to talk with you if you would like to hear more. Stay well.