Leading an adtech business through a pandemic

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Much has been written in the press about how the pandemic has accelerated the pace of change across many industry sectors. Something that has changed beyond recognition for many of us is our definition of the workplace and it remains to be seen how this will evolve over the coming months and years. As the leader and CEO of a growing adtech business, I’d like to share my reflections on how recent events are shaping and accelerating change within our business and how we are preparing ourselves for the future as we continue to grow.

Adaptability and flexible working

For me, the physical and mental wellbeing of our employees is a top priority and we’ve been engaging with our teams daily to ensure they are informed and supported throughout. While businesses have been encouraged to return to the office, it’s also clear that the guidelines across all areas of society including the workplace could change at any moment, which is something we need to be prepared for. Our experience of this period has been that remote working can be highly effective and I believe that an agile and flexible approach with the needs of each individual employee at its heart, is the way forward for us at VIOOH. We are currently thinking of implementing a hybrid working approach, consisting of days in the week where employees will be working from home and days where they will be meeting fellow colleagues in the office to strengthen creativity and ensure alignment. This will help us ensure we are meeting the needs of all our staff as well as keeping a strong performance and efficient way of working. As we continue to grow our teams, I also hope that this will encourage a greater diversity of applications for roles as location becomes less of a factor.

Diversity and inclusion

At VIOOH we believe that diversity and inclusion (D&I) is the responsibility of everyone and not just our D&I steering group or human resources team. In fact, the D&I survey carried out internally last month found that 82% of staff stated that “a focus on unbiased hiring would help create a more diverse and inclusive culture”.

As part of this I believe we should challenge the term ‘culture fit’ in the recruitment context, as I’d argue that it furthers the problem of unconscious bias when it comes to recruitment practices. Is it essential that someone is a good ‘culture fit’ in order to offer a valuable contribution to an organisation? It feels this phrase perpetuates the problem of unconscious bias and restricts diversity. I prefer the term ‘skills and values fit” as a way of looking beyond our own personal bias and focusing more on how someone’s personal values align with the VIOOH values and how their skills will help progress our business.

A post-pandemic future

Good businesses are enriched by adaptability, flexibility, diversity and inclusion. By hiring a truly diverse workforce we can build stronger teams, better suited to tackling tomorrow’s challenges. As we continue to scale our business, we will be looking to ensure we are creating an organisation where every individual can belong.