People – every organisation's secret weapon

Many companies measure success based on productivity and profit. These outcomes are the measurement of what has been undertaken further back in an organisation’s processes, procedures, and culture. If a business focuses on what is required to be successful, especially investing in their employees, a smoother road towards higher productivity, profit and cultural wellbeing will be the result.

Taking a step back to look at what sets your business apart from your competitors, is not only determined by the products offered, a good website or competitive pricing, it is the staff within the business. They are the selling point for any organisation.

Staff who feel valued, engaged, developed, and challenged are the best advocates in selling your business. Loyal staff reflect an organisation that understands staff retention and a shared common goal is what enables business growth, making it stand out from the crowd. Good people are harder to replace than any system or product, so, it is not just good practice to invest in your people and their future, but essential to growth in today’s ever-changing world.

St Stephen’s School has a holistic approach to staff wellbeing and development, which we were thrilled to hear, recently earned us a nod in The Educator magazine’s 5-Star Excellence Awards, as a national Employer of Choice.

The Awards showcase Australian schools that are leading the way in employee recruitment and retention. St Stephen’s School earned a place on the list for the importance we place on lifelong learning, not just in our students but in our 300-plus staff, along with a focus on wellbeing and established professional development and leadership programs.

Some of the schemes in place include allowance for part-time work options, earlier access to long service leave and a two-day professional development event called Staff Expo where staff come together for in-depth professional and personal growth sessions. This event is followed by a Wellness Day where staff are not to catch up on work but take the day to do something for themselves to enhance their wellbeing.

The School has an active Social Club, regular wellbeing newsletter, Above and Beyond nominations for staff who go the ‘extra mile’, onsite gyms and a range of training opportunities for current and aspiring leaders such as the annual Leadercon Conference which invites staff from various management levels across the School to training sessions on leadership, strategy and general business development.

The School employs a Legal, Risk and Health Manager to identify and implement risk and safety systems and processes to support staff during work and non-work-related return to work processes.

Staff are one of the biggest drivers behind an organisation’s growth and sustainability and as an independent school, we are lucky to have the ability to hire the best people for our community.

Matching our students’ needs to the best candidates drives a stronger sense of community and fosters long-lasting relationships between students, teachers and families.

I am also a big believer in asking the question of ‘How are our staff expected to mould the next generation of leaders into well-rounded young people if they aren’t valued or encouraged to excel themselves?’.

Beyond academics, we work to instil various capabilities in our students like innovation, creativity and problem-solving, so it is essential that we allow our staff to cultivate these skills as daily role models.