In this Talent Special bonus, “Leading in a People First Culture: Xero’s Jen Surtees,” host Rob Brown speaks with Jen Surtees, the Director of People Experience (UK & EMEA) at Xero, about the importance of building and leading in a people-first culture.
Jen explains that a people-first culture prioritises employees’ well-being, development, and growth. She emphasises cultivating a culture where employees can thrive and feel supported. She identifies the first step as identifying the values that will drive the culture and developing a clear vision.
Leaders should create a safe environment for employees to voice their opinions and concerns. People leaders can support the culture by ensuring policies and practices align with the company’s values. Jen shares top tips for understanding and developing culture, including listening to feedback, identifying areas for improvement, and incorporating change where needed.
You can also watch this on Youtube – https://youtu.be/7gz1D2r1Idk
Jen is the Director of People Experience (UK & EMEA) at Xero, with extensive experience in coaching and a passion for supporting individuals to be their best selves at work. Jen designs recruitment, development, and cultural programs for businesses that prioritize people at heart. She thoroughly researched the psychological conditions that foster high-performing teams and a sense of belonging, resulting in strong team cultures. Jen works at Xero, ensuring the company provides every employee with a world-class and inclusive experience. She creates an environment where employees can believe, belong and flourish. Under her leadership, Xero has been named the 5th Best Workplace in Tech and the 2nd Best Workplace for Women in the UK Large Business Category. Jen loves the great outdoors and recently moved with her husband and daughter to the coast, where they enjoy spending time outdoors and experiencing nature.
➤ A people-first culture is crucial for businesses in today’s recruitment landscape.
➤ Leaders must prioritise employee well-being, development, and growth to cultivate a thriving culture.
➤ To build a people-first culture, leaders should identify the values that drive the culture and develop a clear vision for the organisation.
➤ Leaders should create a safe environment for employees to voice their opinions and concerns.
➤ People leaders can support the culture by ensuring policies and practices align with the company’s values.
➤ Top tips for understanding and developing culture include: listening to feedback, identifying areas for improvement, and incorporating change where needed.
➤ Businesses need to specialise in a niche and become thought leaders.
➤ Firms offering client advisory services (CAS) must focus on sales and marketing to succeed.
➤ Verticals matter in CAS, and firms must think beyond write-up and controllership to provide more value to their clients.
➤ To scale successfully in CAS, firms must focus on hiring and training staff, creating processes and systems and building technology infrastructure.
➤ CPA and BPO firms can compete with low-priced providers in the current market by providing niche expertise and thought leadership.
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