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Why a ‘people-centric’ approach could be what your business needs to thrive

Putting employees front and centre of business priorities could be what separates a healthy workplace from a struggling one.

user iconJack Campbell 15 March 2024 Big Law
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People are the lifeblood of any organisation; without them, everything falls apart. This is why nurturing the most important asset is crucial and why adopting a “people-centric” approach could work wonders.

The importance of people-centric approaches in the workplace was highlighted by Eva Majercsik, chief people officer at Genesys. In the hybrid and remote age of working, this leadership style is as important as ever.

“A people-centric approach involves businesses prioritising their employees’ experience within the workplace through an active and iterative process of improvement that puts their employees’ needs front and centre. This approach has become more nuanced post-pandemic, with the range of working models – from hybrid to remote working – pushing businesses to rethink their strategy around culture and engagement,” said Majercsik.


“In a hybrid landscape, HR managers face the challenge of creating a culture where employees feel connected and engaged – even if they are remote. Now more than ever, it has become crucial to improve people-centric strategies and orchestrate meaningful experiences – from how employees are onboarded to line manager check-ins, team-building activities, and even during exit interviews.”

Cultivating a thriving culture can be a real challenge when the face-to-face element is removed. This is where this approach can be beneficial.

Majercsik continued: “Business leaders need to create onboarding strategies that mimic in-person experiences and implement contact points that allow employees to work in a manner that suits them as well as the organisation. One of the key ethos of being people-centric is also being genuinely interested in gathering authentic feedback and creating an inclusive culture where everyone feels heard, irrespective of whether employees are remote, hybrid, or in-person. This is the dealbreaker to employees feeling valued and cared for.”

According to Majercsik, a key benefit of adopting a people-centric approach is building a foundation of trust, and trust can lead to a wide variety of benefits.

“[Trust] leads to an engaged and committed workforce that will deliver better business results. It’s no secret that an engaged and happy workforce leads to improved productivity, lower employee turnover, and better business outcomes. From a business objective perspective, improving productivity is increasingly top of mind for organisations, especially as global and local productivity levels are scrutinised,” explained Majercsik.

“For leaders, happy workers are more likely to feel empowered to share ideas (that boost business innovation) and be able to provide feedback without fear of criticism, allowing HR teams to improve and iterate people strategies in line with employee needs. This virtuous cycle of bringing about dynamic changes with a people-centric approach will be felt organisation-wide, as staff will be invested in their work, be themselves, and contribute to the organisation’s collective mission.”

While the potential benefits appear to be substantial, how can a leader effectively implement a people-centric approach? Majercsik noted that communication is key.

“It starts with listening to your employees and using these insights to develop a people strategy or employee experience strategy. Equally important is that all the elements of this strategy align with the company’s priorities as a talent destination where employees feel a sense of pride and belonging,” she said.

“It’s easy to see how the magnitude of change in work practices combined with the cost-of-living pressures these past few years have contributed to feelings of fatigue and exhaustion. As organisations grapple with fluctuating levels of employee engagement, we find that employees want nothing more than to be heard, appreciated, and treated with empathy. HR leaders can start by listening to employees and use these insights to commit to a people strategy that creates value for them.”

Majercsik concluded: “When employees believe that the business listens and is invested in their cause, they are effectively building credibility and championing a people-centric approach.

"This might involve drilling down to how feedback is collected and then communicated back to employees, particularly if engagement rates are sporadic. In embracing that, we’ve to be realistic and prepared that there will be some trial and error when rolling out new pilots, processes, and initiatives while acknowledging that the goal is to iterate, gather feedback, and keep improving.

"It’s equally important that all the elements of this employee experience strategy align with the company’s values and mission, for it holds the key to business growth and success in today’s competitive business landscape.”