On November 19th, we had the pleasure of hosting a webinar all about HR in times of crisis as part of our Partech Shake & Learn series. For the webinar, entitled ‘HR during times of crisis: how to maintain relations and put employees first’, we were lucky enough to have 4 incredible speakers : Camille Plainfossé (Dashlane), Violette Mercherz (Ignition Program), Pauline Barnouin (Phenix), and Maria Camila Santamaria (Lifen). The talk was moderated by Sarah Huet, Managing Director of Partech Shaker. The discussion was dynamic and tackled important topics from maintaining morale during this second lockdown to the best practices to implement when working from home.
Sarah kicked off the conversation by addressing the elephant in the room, the second lockdown and how their companies were dealing with it in comparison with that of the spring. Camille addressed the problem of trying to combat the ‘Zoom fatigue’ that we have all felt throughout 2020 but at the same time encouraging online collaboration. At Dashlane, she explained that they have integrated various tools within their Slack channel. One tool they have used is Donut, which pairs two employees together for an informal chat and they screenshot their meeting and tell the team what they discussed or found out about each other. Continuing from the first lockdown, they have also used their Happyness Team feature which helps the team take part in jovial activities such as Happy Hours or Tarot readings on Halloween. For Violette and her team at Ignition Program, the focus has been on internal surveys to decide what practices work best for the team as they look to achieve their pre-Christmas goals. She explained their fortnightly co-coaching initiative which teams you up with another team member for half an hour. During this chat you would celebrate each other’s such success or help with difficulties you might be facing. Their virtual coffee breaks are completely optional, but they have had a great response from their team with regards to bringing the team closer together.
At Lifen, Maria emphasized how they tried to learn from the first lockdown about what worked and what did not. She spoke about how the tool CultureAMP, is very important for their fortnightly feedback about the spirit of their team and what problems need addressing. Like the other companies, Lifen use virtual coffee breaks to help engage their employees. She has also launched 2 slack channels ‘Lifen Pets’ and ‘Lifen Baby’ so the employees can share the things that are most important to them outside of work! Pauline and her team at Phenix have tried to maintain their core values of humor and humility in their homeworking practices. The emphasis has been put on the managers to maintain team relations by keeping up their office rituals from home which in turn, takes over from the constant Zoom calls.
The speakers moved on to talk about how to maintain the sharing of thoughts and ideas during this period. Camille explained their ‘Ask Me Anything’ monthly initiative in which all employees can ask their CEO any questions they might have. This allows for greater transparency and trust between management and their teams. Maria has created a homeworking playbook to help Managers best direct their teams. This encourages collaboration and discussion on the best practices for each team and allows them to reach a conclusion on what works best for them. Moreover, they have made their monthly meeting with the founders a fortnightly meeting to allow for greater visibility. Pauline has successfully introduced dedicated whole team networking sessions for sharing ideas which has payed dividends for the sense of inclusion that they want to foster at Phenix.
Finally, Sarah addressed the important topic of remote On-boarding and maintaining a work/life balance. For the new employees at Dashlane, Camille has adapted their onboarding process to fit in with remote working. They have started to use Enboarder which prepares all tasks online and allows you to keep track of what you have accomplished. Even more useful, Enboarder takes you through each step of the process and leaves time for each team to present themselves to the new employee. Pauline has made sure their remote onboarding process is just as thorough as it was in person. She makes sure each new employee gets proper personalized training from experts in the different departments to make sure that no stone is left unturned. Maria explained that although Lifen has not done much recruiting during the lockdown, they will look to integrate homeworking into their business when this period comes to an end. She highlighted the importance of onboarding and how an excellent remote solution was necessary. Violette took the lead on the important topic of work/life balance. She emphasized the need to listen to people’s problems as well as getting to know the employees and finding out what makes them tick outside of the working environment. She spoke highly of the OnOff app they use at Ignition Program which helps people unwind after a day’s work through their policy of turning off your work phone after 7pm.
A big thank you must go to all 4 speakers for tackling such an important and relevant topic. They gave us so many brilliant tools to help both ourselves and our teams during this difficult period.
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