Who cares?

Posted On 23 Feb 2022

Who cares?

23 Feb 2022

Candidate Resource, Employable, Employer Resource, News & Events

Employers who care will be the winners in the ever-competitive candidate stakes! Of course, it has always been the case, the desire to work for a company that really cares. To be clear, I am not talking about flowery words, embellished mission statements, or values prescribed to meet the collective vibe. I’m referring to a genuine proposition, followed by actions and congruent behaviours.

Caring cannot just be a mantra. It is the predisposition to be taken seriously. In the past decade, there has been much discussion of a different kind of consciousness for business. Kindness, high care, empathy, and compassion to become part of the inclusive work arena, enriching and accepting the whole human potential, not just the business one.

This is what employees and job seekers alike are after. If you are recruiting right now, please take heed. If you are not recruiting, there is even more reason to take heed. Listen, hear, and observe more carefully. People are looking for more. They want flexibility, safety, security, continuation and importantly, to work for companies who care.

The pandemic delivered a multitude of changes, adjustments, and shock waves. One of which is the shift in the power-hold between the employer and employee. Power-hold may seem an extreme word to use, but for a lot of employees, this is how they feel. Maybe we can call it the shift in freedom of better choice. Regardless, I think you know what I mean!  The shortage of talent expressed so clearly in the economic supply and demand equation has given rise to the ‘rights’ now more freely expressed by employees/job seekers.

In Australia, job vacancies are hitting record highs. The November quarter recorded 396,100 vacancies, 74.2% higher than February 2020, right before the pandemic started. Our unemployment figures are at 4.2% and predicted to fall even further to 3.75%, referred to as ‘full employment’. The surplus of jobs and scarcity of candidates present an abundance of choices for job seekers or anyone even vaguely contemplating a change.

I know everyone’s sentiment with this- as if employers and businesses haven’t been through enough. COVID-19 opened a pandora’s box for employers. We worked from home, and then we didn’t. Come back to the office, no, don’t. To be vaccinated or not. Masks, social distancing, employee welfare and security, mental health, and burnout, how to onboard remotely, engage, then the great resignation, the reshuffle, dislocation, RAT or not, the list is endless. And now this. I know it is not a new idea, concept, or belief, but trust me, it is the big-ticket item, companies who care, and if you get it right, it is the ticket to ride.

To have a competitive advantage, consider how you operate, your social conscience, how you treat your employees, customers, suppliers, and the greater community. In short, being aware of the deeper domains of the business environment and even nature. EST10 has long held this position. We give, and we love to give. We are inclusive, open, supportive and have a strong overwhelming desire to help, especially to those who are not in the position to do so themselves. I won’t go to the details here, for this blog isn’t about us (although if you would like to know, please reach out to me, but be aware, I may enlist your help!).

So, how does your business show they care? I thought to share with you a business that does just this. Every now and then, I mention in my blogs, different businesses, or people who I believe do incredible things. I did so at the beginning of COVID-19, mentioning the suppliers who were unbelievably supportive, kind and caring. I think I have even mentioned my dry cleaner in another blog! This time it is one of our neighbours. No, it is not Kevin from Centred Meditation, although he cares in profusion, you already know that from last year’s weekly mediation sessions during the Delta lockdowns!

This neighbour is Rockpool Bar & Grill and Spice Temple. For the past four years, being fortunate enough to abode in the gorgeous art deco building on Hunter Street, I have had the visibility and clarity to witness them nearly every day! My first observation (and secret) to share with you is when we moved into our office. I wanted to do something special and celebratory for the team. We were tired, dirty and a little frazzled from the move, so I thought to see if one the best restaurants in Sydney would indulge us with a takeaway lunch. With a craving for the delish eggplant and pork, the call was made to Spice Temple (as a recruiter, I’ve learnt not to be afraid to ask or fear rejection. Instead, be excited for the answer to be yes!).

The answer was no. With persistence, I explained why. It was a special treat for our team, and we were neighbours after all! Then the answer was yes. They got it! It resonated with the person on the phone, the maître d and chef.  They understood, loved the gesture and were happy to assist. It was a one-off for a neighbour, never to happen again and the promise not to tell (but surely this is a good reason to share, right?). And of course, I haven’t asked for a takeaway since, so I believe I am safe!

Being a neighbour, I’ve got to know Oliver Atkins, Director of Food and Beverage, and many of his team over the last 4 years and especially so during the last 12 months. Last year was tough and entering our building on occasions was disconcerting. No one was about, most places were shut, and even police cars were cruising around. It was eerie. I would regularly run into Oliver. Having no jobs to fill and no customers to serve gave us time to chat. Like two oldies over a picket fence, we discussed all things concerning us. It always ended back with our team, how to best look after them, engage and care.

At times like these, you witness people for who they really are. For that, I’m grateful for these pandemics’ rare gifts. It gave me time to immerse myself with people, and I saw a view I would never have the opportunity and fortune to experience otherwise. This is how great relationships are forged and bonded, based on truth, trust, and transparency. This is also how I see the role of employers, managers, and leaders in showing our care factor. It is not about pinball machines, yoga, and smoothies. It is more than that.

When I started writing this blog, I thought to research a bit more about Rockpool and they have something they call their care philosophy. I mean, I shouldn’t be surprised! Their philosophy talks about how caring underscores everything they do, from suppliers, employees, and the community, leading to the customer having the best experience. During COVID-19, they launched Hope Delivery, a community meal program to feed international hospitality workers (those not covered for assistance by the government), the homeless and the disadvantaged. I found it very noble, especially how devastated their own business must have been, thus my desire to share and give you a complete picture.

I love recognising and sharing businesses and people doing great things, whether that be mediation with Kevin, eNerds our IT suppliers, or Oliver and the team at Rockpool. They are the living example of what they are promoting or promising on their websites or social media. It is not only about the brand integrity, which ultimately makes them successful with their businesses, but also about being commendable human beings. Now, the only one I may not give up is my hairdresser; he is hard enough to get into as it is! I love Rockpool and Spice Temple- they are, without a doubt, my favourite ‘go-to’ restaurants in Sydney. Now, if you are on the hunt for a great job or career in hospitality, these are the guys to go to (oliver.atkins@rockpool.com or you can view their vacancies here at https://www.rockpoolbarandgrill.com.au/hunter-st/careers/). Employers that care, here at Hunter Street, right next door to EST10!

‘Some people care too much. I think it’s called love.’ – Winnie The Pooh

About the author
Roxanne Calder
Managing Director

As Founder and Managing Director at EST10, Roxanne has an all-encompassing role that includes building and growing the business, as well as actively recruiting and consulting.

After completing a Bachelor’s Degree at Monash University, Roxanne began her recruitment career with renowned recruiter Julia Ross. From there, Roxanne worked in HR and recruitment with a number of global players and boutique businesses throughout Australia, the UK, Singapore and Hong Kong for over 20 years. She has been responsible for managing large teams and projects, implementing RPO models, managing and assisting businesses to an IPO and assisting companies in setting up their recruitment teams and processes.

Following completion of her MBA at the Australian Graduate School of Management, Roxanne launched EST10 in July 2010. In doing so, she hoped to combine the flexibility and high touch service levels of boutique agencies with the structure and strategy afforded to larger firms. Roxanne believes in high-touch, high-care consulting and is always on the lookout for consultants that share this vision of recruitment.

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