Top 5 things our team love about working at Ocasta
As Ocasta, the creators of Oplift, know a thing or two about employee engagement and experience it is only right that we provide a workplace our employees love. We asked our staff what they liked most about working at Ocasta and this is what they said…
#1 The people
‘The people’ came out on top. Most of the staff commented on the friendly, down to earth, genuine and supportive nature of the people who make up the team. The happy, upbeat atmosphere of the office was mentioned a lot. Everyone’s sense of humour makes it an enjoyable place to work and our staff like that there are no ‘work personalities’.
“This place has a great mix of clever, funny, and dedicated people who produce great work.”
“The people! Everyone is down to earth and has a great sense of humour, we work hard but laugh along the way.”
- Think about the personality of your team or ask your team what they like about the people they work with. Take five or six points and include them in your job description e.g. we are looking for someone to fit with our “……..” team, if this sounds like you then get in touch.
You can also then use this to shape questions in an interview. E.g. what does being a genuine person mean to you? How important to you is humour in the workplace? etc.
- When hiring, ask yourself how different the candidate’s personality is from those in your current team. This will help you decide whether there may be any clashes.
- Always look out for negative language, one negative person can significantly bring the mood of your team down.
#2 The supportive and relaxed working environment
Staff appreciate the laid back working environment and commented that it made Ocasta a good place to work. They particularly value the flat organisational structure and the support offered from their colleagues. The sense of being trusted to get on with their work and being responsible for their own projects was also highlighted as a big positive.
“You feel like the company has your best interests at heart. Good to feel supported and trusted.”
“Ability to express your ideas without fear. Everyone is treated equally and has a voice.”
- When you place more trust in employees it means you don’t have to micro-manage; this can avoid a lot of stress within the working environment. The key is to provide clear guidelines to employees as to what is expected of them, they can then figure out how to achieve their goals and manage the work themselves. Have regular catchups to ensure they are meeting the requirements and producing the standard of work you are looking for.
- Senior staff members should lead by example, they should always strive to act in a calm manner. If they act stressed, anxious or angry then it brings down the mood of the whole workplace and makes everyone else feel uptight leading to a stressful atmosphere.
#3 Flexible working
Ocastars love flexi-time! When asked what they liked about working here, most people mentioned the flexible hours and how it gives them the best work life balance. Letting staff work their hours around their own schedule means everyone is happier which makes for a great working environment. Of course we still have core hours but being able to come in or leave earlier or later, plus take longer or shorter lunches means that people can manage their time the way that they want to. Leaving at one on a Friday is a nice end to the week as well!
- Flexi-time is easier for office workers, however to try and introduce flexible working to frontline staff or non desk workers you could introduce compressed hours. This means they can work more hours in the day to make up time to take an afternoon/morning/whole day off.
- This will encourage staff to take more shifts and help out more in late/afternoon evenings when things are busy. Ensure they check the time off with you to see if it is possible with other team member’s schedules.
Last year our Swedish project manager Viktoria introduced us to Fika, which means to take a break in Sweden. It is a custom designed for you to take a pause from your day with coffee, cake and a chat. Every Thursday at 2.30pm we move from our desks to our meeting room with sofas and tables to enjoy a 15 minute break with coffee and a sweet treat. It has been a huge success, a few people mentioned they love cake so it is a nice addition to the week.
- It may not be suitable for you to allow everyone to stop working for 15 minutes if you have shop/factory/restaurant employees. But you can have a day each week where you supply treats for staff that you place ‘out the back.’
- To make it tailored to what they like you could have a vote each week to decide what to bring in on the day.
A common theme among Ocastars was their like of being able to work on things that interest them as this allows them to learn and broaden their knowledge. They are able to work how they want, obviously this is within reason but they enjoy the flexibility of how the company embraces changes and improves the way that we do things.
“The freedom to work on what you want and be a part of things that are of interest to you.”
- Make it clear that you are open to suggestions, most staff members will be anxious to provide constructive criticism or improvements so it is up to senior members to ask and encourage informal chats. This will make staff feel more open to discussing how you could change or improve things.
- Make sure everyone has their own responsibilities and end goals but ask them how they want to do the job and what they think the best way would be to do it. This allows staff to make their own informed decisions.