Recruitment: SOLVED

Are you a small business leader and do you find yourself struggling with recruitment? In 2016 58% of small business owners reported trying to hire staff in 2016, but 52% reported that they were unable to recruit, 48% said that it was a result of being unable to find the employees their business needs.

Fundamentally 60% of recruiters believe cultural fit is the most important factor when recruiting. So by ensuring that your company culture correctly engages with your current teams, culture can be the difference between attracting the right employees for your team and being unable to find any. Culture provides the anchor for your organisation.

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A business’ culture is, to a certain extent, responsible for creating its brand image and identity, and many organisations are recognisable just by their culture. No two organisations ever have the same work culture, culture is the defining factor between organisations and makes organisations unique. But most importantly, culture is the factor that determines morale, recruitment, productivity and ultimately the bottom line of your business.

Common characteristics of successful workplace cultures include open communication, an apparent organisational mission, selective hiring, work-life flexibility and competitive pay. And not to forget, enjoyment and fun – in the hard-driving world of business it’s incredibly easy to overlook humanity. Really, culture is about choosing whether you want to be a business that benefits just you or if you want to create a business environment that’s good for all the stakeholders. Culture, after all, is everything.

What influences workplace culture?

Culture is the beliefs, philosophies, principles and values that shape an organisation. Culture controls how employees behave with customers and also each other. By committing to continuously putting people and culture first and making your organisation all about people, you’ll find that culture is the very glue that brings people in your organisation together, but get it wrong and it’ll be the repellent that keeps them apart.

Ultimately, culture is all encompassing in the sense that employee attitudes both internal and external are created as a result of the culture you seek to create within your business. Your business culture will encourage dress sense, are you wanting a Casual, Smart Casual or Business dress code, your culture will define the approach that employees take, but regardless of the dress code, culture will contribute to the overall work environment.

A good company culture can benefit everyone

In today’s society, work creeps in at every opportunity, but sometimes your employees aren’t aware of it. But everyone has a life, a world outside of work and reminding them that it’s okay to be themselves and express their dreams just as much as your company’s, your business can be rewarded with big bold ideas. Innovation is key to survival. Through culture, employees can find their opportunities for personal growth, outline and redefine their self-esteem and change how they view themselves. It’s a known fact that when employees feel content and part of a team, they become more productive.

Attend a Recruitment Seminar 

Let’s consider, when employees succeed and feel appreciated companies see higher retention rates and a higher quality of work. Workplace culture can create effectiveness, through its structure and professionalism, seeping into employees everyday work lives, meaning that your business will only become more efficient and attract the employees of the future.

Overall, the better your culture is, the more time you spend getting it right, the more attractive your organisation will appear to the world outside. Culture isn’t just something inside your business, culture becomes something marketable, and it’s your USP and the hardest thing for a competitor to replicate. Culture drives efficiency and results in the performance your business has been seeking.

So, how do you know if your company has a good culture?

Make the time to understand what your culture is now and outline how you would like it to be in the future, it’s fundamental to identify and properly assess your company’s culture.

Culture, will change and develop over time, it’ll always be a work in progress, but by making your culture just as important as say your next big marketing objective or your next big sales push, you’ll see your company evolve. Workplace culture is too vital to ignore, and it’s your role to continue to shape it as the workplace evolves, it is after all one of your most imperative responsibilities as a business owner.

Do you understand what is going on in your business?  At nxo we challenge the way you think about your business by sharing our knowledge and experience to create real change and a lasting impact, can we enable your business and develop your business understanding?

Signposting your business for the future

In order to successfully run a company of any size. The business owner needs a clear vision as to where their organisation is heading. In other words, they need to know their business’s purpose and where it aspires to be. A mission statement is, therefore, the key to defining a company’s purpose, activities, and values.

Mission and values form the foundations of any strategic planning. Through communicating them to employees within your business, the overall functioning of your business can be improved and most importantly improve continuously as a result.

The direction your company needs

The use of a mission statement provides a guide for everyone involved with your company’s decision-making. It guides each and every employee in the daily decisions and tasks that they make, to ensure their alignment with the business. A mission reflects employees motivation, so it can help employees to feel positive and inspire them, engaging your workforce with their work and bringing a sense of togetherness within your organisation. However, your mission must be kept up-to-date and dynamic, to ensure that it reflects your current business activities and evolving purpose.

A well-drafted mission provides the clarity of a common objective and a common language (are we on a mission? – and assuming we are, do we all know what the mission is!).

Mission statements provide the focus to all those who are interested in the business; customers, employees, financiers, owners and suppliers. Once you know where you are going as a business, you can start to define the most appropriate and relevant strategies to achieve your goal. This significantly improves your chances of success as a business. Your managers and employees will be more effective in interpreting the respective roles of other people in the business.



The essence of your business identity

Company values are the essence of the company’s identity – the principles, approach and attitude. They provide the framework for how an organisation engages with employees, customers, stakeholders and others – therefore influencing and helping to shape the company culture and personality. Values are just as important to your business as they are to the individuals within, after all, we make all our decisions based on values, whether or not we recognise them.

Therefore, it becomes fundamental to realise that these values constantly need to be communicated internally to ensure that everyone in your business lives and breathes them. Without them? Where will your employees find their direction from? Although, there are no rules as to how many values you should choose; the important thing is to choose values that summarise your organisation and represents something meaningful for every stakeholder.

Maybe you’re sat questioning whether you ought to write a mission statement or define values. Well, research shows that writing a mission statement is directly linked to greater financial performance for businesses and mission statements allow organisations to implement and achieve their desired workplace behaviour (Williams, Morrell and Mullane, 2014).

Isn’t it time you gained a greater insight into understanding your mission and values, and how they’ll shape your company?

Internal Marketing – The key to superior customer service and performance

Only 29% of the UK’s workforce is engaged, this means that 20 million UK workers are not actively engaged with their employers. Placing the UK ninth in the world’s leading economies for employee engagement, through internal marketing you can re-engage your employees and provide the key to enable your business.

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Internal marketing’s purpose is to communicate your company’s goals and to understand your employee’s needs, through aligning employees with your company objectives, your team are more likely to deliver the quality service you’ve designed. By understanding employee’s needs and wants, communication can be tailored to enhance job satisfaction and performance. Effective internal marketing means that barriers to organisational change and resistance can be overcome to realign and motivate employees to create customer orientated employees. Most importantly, internal marketing allows your employees to develop a strong emotional connection to your company brand and the products and/or services that your business sells.

But how do you effectively communicate and market internally?

Often businesses invest heavily into consumer-based marketing, creating a mismatch between the internal and external marketing, but by applying the same principles to internal marketing employees can deliver the experience that’s consistent with the company’s expectations. In a nutshell, internal marketing comes down to communication and communicating, through regular small simple messages employees can digest the information presented to them, after all, nobody really wants to read a 50-page internal marketing document. Keep communications short, sweet, and make it accessible to each and every employee to get your message across. Begin with the objective(s), the mission, the positioning statement, the vision and company values.

Setting your Objectives

So the first step becomes identifying clear goals; from brand awareness to improving customer service, a clear understandable goal can make or break an internal marketing campaign. From there, educate your employees on the company vision, mission and values to form the foundations, this can provide insight into what your employees expect and the expectations placed on them. Whether it’s training workshops, hiring new staff, reorganising departments.

Through creating a positive story within your company, employees can be persuaded to engage with your company’s strategy, this positivism can help to bring alive for employees and inform the way they approach their jobs. By branding internally, explaining the company goal and your message, you’ll be able to weave the brand into the very fabric of your company and in the future preserve the culture of your business for future generations.

By answering key questions about your employees:

What do they feel and think of the company?

What do we want them to feel and think?

What would convince them to feel and think like this?

And most importantly, why should they believe you

And what’s the key to all of this? Research; research and understand your target market (your employees), get to know them as the individuals behind their company roles and deliver a campaign that engages with them, but don’t forget to gather feedback. Effective internal communication places your company’s soul into an employee’s everyday life and reinforces why they come to work. By tailoring internal marketing communication, your on-brand behaviour can become second nature to your employees. And without internal communication? How will your employees care or contribute positively to your company? Internal marketing, after all, is just as important as external.

Attend our marketing planning workshop to find out more

Develop a value proposition, create business clarity and enable your business

Often business value is seen as the difference between perceived benefits and perceived costs, or the price-quality ratio of a product or service offering. But dig a little deeper, and the internet will tell you that value is the reason that your business exists or why you’re able to charge what you charge or why your business is the best at what it does. Fundamentally value and value propositions form the foundation of marketing and enable your business.

Simply put, value propositions describe your customer’s problem and your solution to their problem and most importantly the value customers will receive from your business. It’s the difference between you and your competitors and explains to customers why they should buy from you. And, there’s a clear link between value propositions and organisational performance, competitive advantage and improving financial performance; value propositions enable business. Read more


WyredUp Workshop Takeaway

nxo consultants Cheryl Jones and Debbie Smith were invited along to deliver a marketing workshop to over 40 delegates who attended WyredUp’s latest networking event in Fleetwood.

WyredUp is a business network set up by Wyre Council to help local businesses connect with each other and also gives the opportunity to showcase their company. Read more


Marketing Planning Workshop

nxo, Propel2Grow and Boost Lancashire are delighted to invite you to a

Marketing Planning Workshop

Build an effective strategy for marketing success

on Wednesday 14th June 2017 8.30 am – 12 pm
at HSBC Commercial Centre, Fulwood, Preston

Hosted by nxo Marketing Director Cheryl Jones
& nxo Marketing Consultant, Debbie Smith

This event will suit any small business looking to improve their marketing function. You will leave with a planning framework to help you build your own marketing strategy.

Click on this Invitation link to find out more or reserve your place now at



Healthy Leaders

Mens sana in corpore sano

A healthy mind in a healthy body; if I heard my father say this to me once he said it a thousand times. Perhaps this is the route to my interest in personal well-being.

The expression is a truism for businesses too – the office of national statistics refers to start-up businesses as births and you may have already guessed what they call closing businesses – deaths!!

In my line of work, helping businesses to grow, the two things are intertwined; it is essential to gain an initial understanding of the health of the business I am working with:

Culture; customers; cash-flow; profit

It could just as easily be:

Weight; nutrition; blood pressure; activity
Each element has a unique impact on the well-being of the business or the person and cumulatively the impact can be profound – positively or negatively.

Read more


Do you have an up to date strategy for your business?

In a report published by the Department for Business Innovation and Skills it states that three quarters of small UK businesses report an ambition to grow. Interestingly amongst all the discussions held with the business owners it was common to find that ‘they saw no way forward and no viable alternative on particular issues’. Evidence was found that grouped together a ‘lack of faith that business improvements yielded demonstrable benefit’.

Read more


20 million UK workers are not actively engaged

Preston based business consultancy nxo hosted an exclusive event attended by over 40 local businesses. The topic of the event, Practical Engagement for Profit, was delivered by Professor John Oliver OBE, former Chief Executive of Leyland Trucks who shared with the audience his wealth of experience in culture change and the impact of employee engagement on the bottom line.

A startling fact presented was that only 29% of the UK’s workforce is engaged, putting us ninth in the world’s leading economies. This means that 20 million UK workers are not actively engaged with their employers. Read more



Know your current position. Where are you now? What’s working; what’s not working so well and what things need to improve within your business.

Understand who you are. To be authentic in your messaging you first must understand your ‘why’ and raison d’etre. A company mission and values set will crystallise your focus.

Know where you want to be and how you will bridge the gap. A goal without a set of achievable objectives is merely a wish. If you do not set clear objectives then how will you even know when you have got there? Read more