Friday, October 28, 2011

Flashback Friday

With the weekend now about ten minutes away I wanted to do something a bit unusual. And that's talk about us. Not me, mind you. Us. Otherwise known as BlueChippers. 

This week, as we've worked together to hit home runs for current clients, pitch to new clients and improve how we work, a few things really leapt out. So, at risk of having you see me as a a bit soppy, I want to pause, and to 'flash back' to some great moments for our team.

It's different here
Everyone says that when they're recruiting right? For example: "We're different. We do x, y & z for our people. We really care." And then by week three you're wondering how they even made that stuff up, let alone said it with a straight face. 

But here's what our people (not me!) say:

1. The values are real - respect, integrity, persistence, excellence - with actions behind them 
2. There are no politics
3. People tell the truth even when it hurts
4. You have a real opportunity to do your best work and to grow personally and professionally
5. We have fun and laugh together...

Although at midday today when we were all heads down, hands on keyboard you might wonder about that one!

A star team...not just a team of stars
"You know it's harder to get a job at BlueChip than it is at [insert name of leading investment bank here]" said a well known recruiter recently.

Well actually it might even be harder because not only do we hire hungry, humble and smart people, we are uncompromising when it comes to "fit". And by "fit" we don't mean a gender, cultural or educational background or personality type. We mean "fit" with our values. 

While we do unashamedly go after the best people in the market, we want to only work with other people we want on our relatively small "boat". 

People who say stuff like:

- "I don't want to delegate that to him/her because it won't give them enough challenge"
- "We can do this's how it might work"
- "So and so did a really good job on this" and (yes, it's true)
- "We shouldn't charge our client for that because..."

Doing our best clients get REAL results
When we're recruiting and an entry level candidate says "I don't want to do that fluffy kind of PR", they suddenly have our full attention. 

People who are already BlueChippers want to make a difference, do their best work and achieve a great outcome for clients.

They hate fluff, they loathe tactical-only campaigns, and they always want to understand the big picture. 

In many ways, while the recruiters think we're mad, BlueChippers are actually people who already work like we do. Our culture calls out to the right people.

They're people who want to do great work. And they are prepared to hear feedback in order to get better and better at what they do. 

So when something's not working, they call it out. To our clients, their colleagues or their boss. We call it (full credit to Patrick Lencioni) the "kind truth". One set of words to describe giving feedback to each other is this:

"Bad news does not improve with age. But the kind truth improves with observation". 

It hurts way less when the person giving you feedback cares, and has carefully observed what's going on for you. But still delivers exactly what you need to hear, knowing it might sting.

Valuing values
This week I've marveled at the ability, the team spirit and the talent here at BlueChip. 

But most of all I've been humbled by the evidence of our values at work. 

They power our team, they help us reach the stars for our clients, and they ensure we enjoy the time we spend with each other.

Above all, values help us all "be the best we can be".

Happy weekend BlueChippers - whether you work here yet or not!

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