By Tara Lefave Stred
Due to the pandemic, company culture has received an unprecedented amount of attention over the past 18 months. With many companies continuing with a remote workforce or adopting a hybrid work environment, it’s even more important to bring teams together and create a positive culture. For job seekers, culture is now one of the primary “benefits'' sought when evaluating their next move. And it’s more than just Happy Hours and awards. It’s a melding of work/life balance, trust, flexibility and loving what you do and the company you do it for. The pandemic taught me many things, including the importance of family and friends, and maintaining a work/life balance, which is hard in today’s world of “instant everything.”
This is an interesting topic for me on many levels, as culture can mean something different to every organization. There are important attributes that I’ve always looked for in a company and which, I think you’ll agree, are important for attracting and retaining great talent. During the height of the pandemic, I found my perfect work family when I joined Waters Agency. It’s an organization that is totally aligned with my core values. Since joining in August 2020, I have enjoyed the freedom to work with the leadership team and help shape the kind of agency we all want to work for.
Throughout my career, the key thing that connects the dots for me and shapes whether it’s a positive or negative experience, is being surrounded by executives, peers and clients who live by the golden rule – treat others as you want to be treated! It’s that simple, and at Waters Agency it is exemplified every day!
“There’s no magic formula for great company culture. The key is just to treat your staff how you would like to be treated.”
– Richard Branson, Founder, Virgin Group
Another must for me is to work for a company that works hard and also gives their employees opportunities to rejuvenate their minds. PR is a demanding and sometimes stressful profession, but one of great reward if balanced properly. At Waters Agency, we know our employees are our greatest asset and our executive team ensures we’re taken care of.
Over the past year and a half, our team instituted several new culture perks to help manage the work/life balance, keep our minds fresh and put the fun back into work:
Monthly Trivia: We revisited the 80s, battled it out between the US and UK, and gave our colleagues from other parts of the world a look at what makes Boston great. We had a lot of fun turning off email and coming together to battle it out for some great prizes. I mean who doesn’t love Amazon and Starbucks?
Summer Fridays: Summer comes and goes so quickly, so it was great to have Waters Agency kick off the season with Summer Fridays – another example of how the agency puts employees first – allowing us to get a jump on those fun summer weekends.
Celebrating You: Everyone deserves their birthday off as a day to celebrate. At Waters we recognize how important YOU are and are lucky to get our birthdays off to celebrate. Party time!
Mental Health Day: With mental health and work/life balance at the forefront of every CEO’s mind, Waters Agency extends to its employees a mental health day to unwind and unplug from it all. It is a much-needed break for all of us and very much appreciated too (remember that golden rule – treat others how you would like to be treated!).
No-meeting Fridays: Waters Agency also recently acknowledged that we’re all facing Zoom fatigue and could moreover benefit from a day allocated to the thinking of big thoughts, to strategically assessing what’s working and what’s not on accounts, and to getting the creative juices flowing. So, we declared “No-meeting Fridays.” Another great perk that helps to shape our culture at Waters Agency and give our employees some much needed time to turn off the video and get creative!
Most of us spend an average of more than 2,000 hours a year with our work family. A company’s culture and its people shape our daily lives and our personal and career development. I’m proud to be part of a company that values its people and their work/life balance. If Waters Agency sounds like a family you want to join, check us out. We’re hiring and would love to welcome you home!
Visit our careers page to learn more: https://www.watersagency.com/careers
About the author:
Senior Account Director Tara Lefave Stred has 20+ years of experience working in the high-tech industry on both the agency and client sides. She has proven success in developing and implementing B2B and B2C communications plans that support global business objectives. Her work at Waters Agency spans the storage, cybersecurity, database, cloud and other industries.