Investing in mental health for all employees with Invenia Group and CrimsonXT
In our latest series, we delve into the profound impact a thriving company culture has on overall business success and, how a culture of continuous learning and innovation creates a dynamic atmosphere that empowers individuals to contribute meaningfully, with Invenia Group, a global search and talent firm specialising in the pharmaceutical, scientific and process technology and medical device and technology sectors.
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Invenia Group and CrimsonXT are global talent and executive search firms specialising in multidisciplinary life sciences technology and industrial technology industries across the UK, Europe, US and APAC.
"We exist to connect talented individuals with progressive startups and scaleups, and industry-leading enterprises that are solving some of the world’s most complex challenges.
We deliver talent acquisition solutions with an innovative values-driven approach that empowers our teams to build rich candidate networks, be genuine experts in their niche markets and create valuable long-term client partners who work only with us.
Our aim is simple, to ensure our clients have the talent they need to succeed and our candidates secure jobs they love."
We sat down with Invenia Group and CrimsonXT to understand how they have created a culture of excellence.
How would you describe the culture you're aspiring to build?
Culture is far from a tick box exercise at Invenia Group and CrimsonXT.
Recognising that culture is crucial to our existing and continued success and how, if left unattended, can be diluted in a high-growth business, our three founding directors created a set of core values to unite our people and our brands.
Our 6 company values:
Driven by success and ambition
Self-motivate, adaptable and accountable
Transparent and trusted advisors
Respectful to clients, candidates, and each other
Competitive but egoless team players
Passionate about our jobs and love what we do
These values are not displayed on walls. Nor were they crafted in a boardroom or by our marketing team. They were built over multiple collaborations with both time-served employees and newcomers.
Our values are so integral to our mission that communicating them is a daily event. Each instance flexes from the fun; where mugs emblazoned with their own personalised value, greet our teams during their morning coffees, to the serious; where our values play significant roles in staff engagement surveys, appraisals, and regular all-hands meetings.
We believe our co-created and ever-present values give our consultants a shared sense of purpose and a common direction. As a business, we take time to learn what makes each person tick, especially when it comes to celebrating success. From the fantastic incentives and rewards available to more personalised thank you, we always work hard to keep things relevant, sociable, and fun.
At Invenia Group and CrimsonXT, there is no predetermined mould you must conform to in terms of appearance. We embrace inclusivity, diversity, and individuality. Our people are united by our shared values and objectives, constantly motivating one another to achieve success, whatever that means for the individual.
With our fast progression and upcoming plans, we welcome like-minded, passionate people to be on this exciting growth journey with us.
How do you want each team member to feel about their work?
We don’t believe in rigid performance metrics or in micromanagement. Instead, we support our consultants to feel empowered so that they can deliver a high-quality service to every client and candidate they engage with. And crucially, they do so, in the best way for them.
We believe in an honest, trust-based system and carry the belief that with the right coaching, mentoring and support, every person in the business can reach their maximum potential.
Our career progression plans are completely bespoke, so everyone has the flexibility and choice of where they want to grow, and the trust and support from management to choose where to navigate your career.
We actively promote flexibility across the business, and we have quarterly business reviews with each team and manager to identify what’s working well and what areas they may need support with. Support comes in various forms, one being access to Certified Health Coach & CBT Practitioner Michelle Flynn, who regularly visits our offices to deliver mental health and wellbeing talks as well as 1-2-1 coaching sessions.
We also run confidential feedback surveys to allow each employee to voice their opinions on everything from training to incentives to the general office atmosphere. This approach ensures that every team member feels comfortable expressing their concerns and we remain accommodating to all.
What type of person would thrive working here?
At Invenia Group and CrimsonXT, we seek employees who embody the values that underpin our entire organisation.
We are interested in individuals who are self-motivated, independent, respectful, ambitious, and genuinely passionate about their work, demonstrating a strong desire to achieve success.
Working with us comes with numerous benefits, and we take pride in offering a competitive package compared to our rivals. Therefore, those who are eager to find a position that promotes flexibility, and a healthy work-life balance will thrive in our offices.
We provide a hybrid working schedule and the option to choose your home office location, whether that be Leeds, London, or New York. We also place great importance on fostering diversity among our employees. We consciously steer away from conforming to a stereotypical recruiter-culture and actively seek individuals who bring a range of unique perspectives and personalities.
Our team consists of people who enjoy socialising and partaking in office-based incentives, as well as employees who value the flexibility of spending quality time at home with their families and prefer incentives that align with their lifestyles. We celebrate our individuality and encourage one another to strive for success.
What makes Invenia Group and CrimsonXT a special place to work?
We are aware of the stigma attached to recruitment businesses, which is why we offer so much more than the average company. Our dedicated People Development' team ensures that every individual within our organisation has a designated point of contact for addressing work-related or personal concerns.
Prioritising mental health, we've partnered with well-being coach Michelle Flynn, who offers both one-on-one sessions and insightful talks in group setting at our workplaces. In line with fostering engagement, we also have a dedicated 'internal events' team and management that help to curate a busy calendar of activities, including Director's lunches, holiday incentives and team bonding activities, ensuring every month is brimming with engaging experiences.
We also invest in First Aid Mental Health qualifications, meaning we have someone onsite constantly accessible for anyone suffering from poor or ill mental health. Our People Development team is trained to recognise signs and symptoms of poor/ill mental health and trained to approach, assess, and assist them providing them with the appropriate next steps.
We also have a charity team, that plan and prepare events for upcoming fundraising activities. We sadly lost a member of our team, Simone, to triple-negative breast cancer in 2021, and since setting up our Simone Taylor Fund in 2021, we have raised over £17,000 for a variety of cancer charities across the UK.
How do you see a vibrant company culture influencing the companies overall success?
We've experienced substantial growth over the past 2-3 years, and because of this, are consistently aiming to develop and improve our company culture. We take pride in fostering a vibrant, friendly, and inviting atmosphere where our teams can flourish. With a bustling office in Leeds housing 40 team members, a smaller London office of 5, and two fully remote team members, we prioritise inclusivity for all team members and feel encouraged knowing we house the following:
Employee engagement and satisfaction – A great company culture establishes a setting where employees feel appreciated, motivated, and actively involved. We notice a great difference in productivity when our employees find fulfillment in their roles and are enthusiastic about their professional growth. This enables better collaboration amongst our teams.
Talent attraction and retention - A company renowned for its encouraging and inclusive environment becomes a sought-after workplace, and that is exactly our goal. Team members who experience a strong sense of belonging are more likely to stay within the organisation. We pride ourselves on our low turnover rate and employee-loyalty to the business, with many consultants that have been with the business for 5+ years.
Happiness at work – We know that a positive company culture contributes to a sense of well-being and happiness amongst employees, which is why we ensure each individual feels heard and supported. Happier employees exhibit better creativity, innovation, and adaptability – traits that are vital for a successful business. A better work environment alleviates stress and burnout, leading to improved mental and physical health for team members.
Is there a concept you are working on that could create meaningful change in your culture?
In 2023, we introduced the People Development team,' a resource dedicated to aiding individuals across the organisation in addressing any concerns, whether personal or work-related. This team provides comprehensive support for all employees in their progression endeavours. The team also hosts twice-yearly culture sessions to ensure newly joined colleagues have a deep understanding of company values as well as the opportunity to contribute to their evolution.
Our company's receptiveness to feedback is a cornerstone of our approach. Regular internal surveys are conducted company-wide, meaning everyone across the business has the opportunity to voice their opinion on topics that will involve them.
Quarterly management training is conducted for all mangers across the business, catering to those overseeing larger teams or newly promoted to senior positions. Additionally, all members of our company engage in 'insights' training, including a personality assessment, empowering managers with tailored communication tools, helping improve communication throughout the business.
Promoting a healthy lifestyle is also one of our priorities. We aim to ensure our consultants feel their best, both physically and mentally. We offer Thursday morning breakfast buffets, weekly yoga sessions and flexible work policies enabling extended gym breaks contributing to employee well-being.
Our vibrant and enjoyable atmosphere complements these efforts. We host an array of game nights, fantasy football leagues, and team-building activities outside of the office to foster a content and thriving team environment.
How do you embrace employee feedback?
We conduct values sessions for groups of new employees (within their first 6 months), gathering all feedback, and arranging follow-up discussions within individual consultant Monthly Business Reviews (MBR’s). Through exit interviews, we foster transparency with our consultants, leveraging the feedback from these sessions to inform our ongoing culture strategy.
Much of the feedback we receive centers around individual learning and development, as anticipated. So, we've directed considerable effort into this aspect, introducing 'Directors' coaching sessions facilitated by our three company Directors, Paul, James, and Chris.
In response to evolving work dynamics stemming from the pandemic, we've refined our flexible working policy over the years. Consultants are now allotted a specific daily work duration, but they can exercise this flexibility to their preference – whether that’s starting work later and finishing earlier, or vice versa, and incorporating extended breaks, amongst other possibilities.