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‘A business leader’s response to challenge is true test of character’ – Alexander Hall

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  • 08/10/2020
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‘A business leader’s response to challenge is true test of character’ – Alexander Hall
How a business leader responds to challenges within their workforce is a “true test” of their character, Dom Scott, managing director at Alexander Hall has said.

 

Speaking on the Accord Growth Series podcast about healthy workplace cultures, Scott (pictured) said supporting employees through life events was beneficial both to staff and employers. 

He said: “If you want longevity from your people then statistically all manner of things will happen over the five or 10-year period they work for you.  

“We’re very good at being there when they need us to be. We do it because it’s the right thing to do but also it breeds loyalty, so it means staff retention is better.” 

Tom Davies, sales director at Alexander Hall, added it was important to understand each other’s work-related challenges too and work through them together. 

He said: “Collaboration is significantly important in the current environment. Its understanding that together we’re greater than the sum of our parts. At present, this couldn’t be more crucial not just in staying productive but also in each other’s wellbeing. 

“Examples are working and engaging with lender partners, understanding the nature of one another’s challenges, offering support rather than frustration and complaints.” 

 

Diversity and inclusion 

Davies and Scott also highlighted the importance of creating a workplace environment that was reflective of society and made employees from all walks of life feel comfortable. 

Mentioning Alexander Hall’s initiatives to represent women, people of colour and LGTBQ+ employees, Scott said the firm was “moving the dial of diversity in the right direction” but still had work to do. 

“When we look at our numbers, we’re starting to reflect the environment we predominantly operate in which for us is London and the South East.  

35 per cent of our business are women, 50 per cent of our teams are run by women, 40 per cent of our business is non-white and 50 per cent of our teams is run by someone who identifies as non-white,” Scott said. 

He added for inclusion programmes to work, it was also vital to constantly engage with the workforce and give employees in minority groups a “safe space” to talk about any concerns. 

“Creating spaces people feel they can talk openly is important, just because you don’t hear something negative doesn’t mean it’s not happening,” he said. 

For those who do not fall into certain minority groups, Davies said being an ally and understanding the experiences of others was important. 

He said allyship was “building relationships based on trust, consistency and accountability with marginalised groups of people where your efforts are not self-defined or self-assessed but they’re recognised by those who you’re seeking to ally with”.  

“Business leaders have to be want to be held to account when getting this feedback and identify areas they can improve,” he added. 

 

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