Our people are our greatest asset and they are critical to our long-term success.
We recognise that having diverse people, skillsets and experience is vital, particularly at a time of transformation. We work hard to nurture this balance through our recruitment, development and learning initiatives.
When recruiting new team members, we often look outside of our core sectors, welcoming new skills and perspectives into our teams to challenge our ways of working and to help drive our business forward.
One example is our recent appointment of Amanda Metcalfe as Head of Place, Brand and Marketing. Amanda joined us from boutique hotel operator Native, bringing with her a wealth of experience from customer-centric brands including Morrison’s, Selfridges and eBay. Amanda is building a team of experts who are focused on activating our places, turning our spaces and public realm into celebrated experience-led destinations. One such initiative was the recent partnership between St James’s and Esquire, to create the St James’s Edit by Esquire - an experiential pop-up coinciding with London Fashion Week Men’s.
Developing and nurturing existing talent will always be a priority. We are proud of our high levels of employee engagement, with 89% of our people recognising our business as a brilliant place to work, and are committed to creating opportunities for individuals to develop and further their careers. This year, approximately one third of our total recruitment activity involved internal candidates moving into new roles. Alex Lam Qiu, initially joined us in 2016 as Assistant Financial Accountant, having demonstrated his ability in this role, he showed an interest in moving into a commercial role enabling him to business partner for a new set of stakeholders. With our Commercial Finance team expanding and looking to bring in new skills, Alex was able to find a position which would challenge him and enable him to develop his skills, while bolstering the existing team’s strengths with his financial accounting background. We also supported Alex to successfully complete his ACCA in February 2019.
Our investment in our leaders and managers is another essential element to ensuring our resilience. As a learning-driven organisation, we invest in our leaders principally through two initiatives: the Connected Leaders and Management Development programmes. Our Connected Leaders programme focuses on how our leaders can facilitate our transformation to an agile, customer-focused organisation. It also equips participants with the skills, knowledge and tools they’ll need to help us to deliver our ambition. As a valued leader, Clare Collard, who heads up our Public Affairs and Community team, participated in our most recent cohort. The programme also aims to better ‘connect’ our leaders, facilitating new relationships and conversations, which in turn foster support, innovation and creativity.
Through our combined focus on recruitment, learning and development our aim is to encourage a high performance culture and a reputation as a brilliant place to work.
Our Annual Report 2018/19