16 February 2023

"Culture fit"

In today's challenging environment, finding the workplace culture that's right for them is one of the top priorities for industry leading talent within the healthcare communications sector.

To secure the best talent, businesses need to illustrate the structures they have in place to form and maintain a positive, supportive and inclusive working environment. But how do you take a good "work culture" from a HR planning meeting to real-world practice? Here are our key points to consider when building a great company culture.

Don’t say, Do.

“We’re thinking of…”

Bringing in a four-day week? Taking the team out to celebrate our success? Introducing paid overtime? Never have a series of words made a sentence hollower than “we’re thinking of”. The very statement itself feels like its still in progress, and much like the rewards it promises, its summation is indefinite. Many companies will suggest that they are investing time into improving the lives of their employees, but few will go beyond the mind-map stage of making them a reality. Don’t dangle positive reinforcement in front of your teams like a carrot; instead, create a culture of doing, not just saying. Following through with ideas, promises and suggestions means that you will embody the same sincerity and dedication that you want to see reflected in your employees. This will build a culture centred in the mutual trust between teams and senior management, and will ensure that potential new talent feel as though they know what to expect when they join.

Set the standard

Creating a positive work culture isn’t just about how happy your team are in their day-to-day; it’s also about understanding what you represent in the wider market. If you’ve carefully cultivated a set of values as part of your public image, what are you doing to embody them in the long term? For example, phrases like “diversity” and “inclusion” can’t merely be buzzwords that you use to attract talent- they have to be actualised in your business practice. As an “inclusive” company, make sure to champion women and minorities in senior leadership positions, and advocate for disabled team members by mandating extra support for both mental and physical disabilities. Give back to the local community by hosting fundraisers for charities which embody these values, and collaborate with brands which share your ideals for a better future. In this way, top talent will be able to see the impact you are having both within your own company and the market as a whole. It’s so easy for a company to “say” one thing and “be” another, so stand out by insisting that your values are present in every choice you make.

Cash is king

Speaking about salaries can be a taboo topic, but ultimately one of the main drivers for successful, driven candidates is money. As Progression Partners for leading industry talent within the healthcare communications sector, we often hear candidates who feel undervalued in their current companies due to their salaries being lower than they feel they should be. We help our candidates to compare their current packages to the market rate, and help them to understand where their contributions would be valued fairly. If you want to attract- and most importantly retain- the best talent, then you need to be regularly benchmarking your salaries against industry standards to ensure that you're presenting an attractive offering for potential new starters. In the midst of a cost of living crisis in the UK, a fair wage indicates not only a sense of integrity within the market, but also an awareness for the wider socioeconomic circumstances of your employees. Never underestimate their value; instead consistently work to reward their contributions and innovations.

Wellbeing is worth it

Many companies are now boasting wellbeing-focused programmes to improve the mental health of their teams. However, "wellbeing" has become a bit of a HR buzzword, used too often and with varied success. The best talent will always know the difference between a business that says they look after their staff's mental health and wellbeing, and a business that doesn't deliver on that promise. The amount of job advertisements for roles will list "free tea and coffee" or "a day off on your birthday" as part of their care package is frankly disturbing. If you're making a point of offering a supportive work environment, be sure to truly invest into schemes and practices that will best support your employees. Whether this means introducing mandatory mental health first aid training for your senior management team, or creating a personal "wellbeing fund" to ensure that your staff take time for themselves during the working year, investing back into your team is imperative if you want to cultivate a positive and healthy professional environment.

Are you a company in the healthcare communications space who wants to find more ways to attract the best talent?

At Carys Mills Consulting, we merge recruitment process know-how with insider industry experience to source and precisely select candidates with niche skillsets, from specific therapeutic focuses to extensive experience in a communications format. We work consultatively with our client base to prioritise their job search and continually focus on the best outcome for both client and candidate.

For business enquiries, contact our senior leadership team via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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