Aligning your company’s culture to your people’s values is not as simple as it looks. Here we will show KPI’s, initiatives, and the best tips on how to boost productivity and employee engagement. 
We have interviewed Marian Viciana, People Manager at  Heura Foods, one of the fastest-growing startups in Spain. Their will to change the world to a better place is a key aspect to align their company. She has found balanced values and a common passion, creating a healthy workplace, both physically and remotely. 

What is the mission of Heura Foods?

Our goal is to accelerate the transition to sustainable protein consumption. To achieve this we create delicious and nutritious plant-based products.  With the aim to inspire and help people to voluntarily change their consumption habits. In this way, we will be protecting our health and the planet without giving up our old school recipes or our favorite traditions.

What is the People Department’s purpose within this mission?

The objectives of the People department in Heura can be summarized in two; One, to continue the creation of a high-performance team. Which is made up of people who are passionate about their work and aligned with the values we promote.  Secondly, is to keep Heura as a good place to work. Where everyone feels they are making an impact on social change as brutal as the one we are chasing.

Are you using any KPI to measure Employee Engagement, eNPS, and  Satisfaction?

We started doing it recently so they are not fully developed yet. We still need to find the core KPIs we want to measure. We focus mainly on the success of our selection processes and on the results of the 360º evaluation for eNPS. The latter may be rarer, but in our case, it is not that I measure performance and objectives. We want to measure employee engagement with the company and alignment with values. Therefore, if the company’s global average is high, People’s goal of maintaining a team aligned with values will be achieved.

Which is the main challenge People & Culture departments encounter?

Without a doubt, the selection is the one that has more impact. In our case especially since we are a startup, with all that it implies we are within a sector composed of diverse types of companies; multinationals, traditional and/or family. That leads us to the fact that normally it is not so easy as in the tech sector, to find people who have the necessary experience, and that, at the same time, fits our company culture. 

For me, the main problem in the selection process is not to find the most suitable person for the position, but also, looking towards the experience of the employee. This could help to avoid or detect misalignments at an early stage to address them with a greater probability of success.

Which are the main initiatives you carry out to boost employee engagement?

I  work on feedback and honest communication because it is something we have worked on a lot, from all areas of the company. In our DNA we  intrinsically question everything we feel, asking: “does it make  sense?” No matter who proposes something or how long it has been going on like this, and that we have the feeling that this is counterculture. On top of this, people are not used to questioning what their boss says, thinks, or sees. For us, this is a source of future problems because we start to follow inertias and do things without being in complete agreement (therefore, surely with less passion) and without knowing very well why.

To solve this, we created different channels and spaces of communication  to question or give more constructive feedback but also thank our colleagues. I am constantly learning  how to give and receive that feedback.

Apart from this, something that is also very important to us is building solutions and building them together, working very well interdepartmentally without creating silos, and for this, I believe that promoting the feeling of belonging to the project, an individual and collective responsibility within it has been key.

Are you proud of working at Heura Foods?

A: Extremely proud. To join this project has been without a doubt one of the best decisions of my life, and whoever knows me will agree on that. My values are totally aligned with Heura’s mission.  We are building a company that I am proud to be a part of, first, for the way it treats its workers, second, the constant search for positive impact on society and, third, the consistency in their values. What more could I ask for? I wish everyone was as lucky as I am!

In Heura Foods, I’ve found my Ikigai (if you don’t know the concept, I suggest you read about it and try hard to find it, it will be worth it).

Marian’s thoughts on the future of HR and employee engagement

We now have a huge change on the table which is remote work, which has come to stay. How to maintain a strong culture in a team that doesn’t look and talks about them every day is something we already ask ourselves every day, and from my experience during this pandemic, I don’t think it’s going to be as difficult as it seemed 6 months ago.

Takeaways on employee engagement

#1: Working from home is the new normal and can affect burnout.

#2: Building a safe communication channel will eventually build stronger teams.

#3: Set an example using management first.

#4: Choose the talent that is more suitable for YOUR company. This will ensure alignment in the future.

#5: Promote your values and maintain all teams aligned by making them feel they are impacting society.

Marian’s tip: Find your IKIGAI.

Working on employee engagement is key; when employees are given a voice, they will be encouraged to share positive feedback with one another. This will lead to healthier communication. If you’d like to discover how Nailted can help you achieve greater success with people and culture, book a demo with one of our experts.