It’s Student Week on the ONB Blog! Sadly, we must say goodbye to our summer co-op students this week. Timed with the wrap-up of their ONB tenure, all of this week’s content comes from our students.
If you had asked me before my summer with ONB what ‘office culture’ entails or the impact it has my response would have been quite limited. Fortunately, I have had the pleasure of assisting with both day-to-day marketing activities and with developing the organization’s culture.
Upon ONB’s founding, the first priority of CEO Stephen Lund was to hire a Chief Culture Officer (CCO) — the first in New Brunswick. Having an executive responsible for the overall atmosphere of the organization speaks to the importance of establishing a great company culture.
From my experiences this summer, ONB’s culture brings to mind three words: empowering, diversity, innovative. Let’s break that down a bit.
Everyone at ONB has the same mission — to make New Brunswick an even better place to both live and work. That’s obvious. But how is that executed?
ONB gives employees a voice and encourages advocacy. When team members advocate for their needs the organization can only strengthen, which in turn ensures all ONB employees are working to their highest potential. With various recognition models in place, employees feel valued for their day-to-day work and are motivated to go one step further. Whether it’s winning a ‘BRAVO Award’ (quarterly recognition awards) or the annual CEO Award or simply receiving a recognition card from a colleague, ONB employees know their work is appreciated. This is a key factor in building a high-performance corporate culture.
Every ONB team member has a different story. We have teammates from all around the world with a wide variety of educational and work experiences.
Not only is culture nurtured from the top, it’s supported by all employees. We all have an opportunity to lead and champion issues, ideas, and activities that are important to us. Diversity has helped shape our culture and its six culture teams: Continuous Improvement, Giving Back, Green Team, Health & Wellness, Social Committee, and Recognition Team. These teams are all employee-led and over half of our organization volunteer on these committees. Each team is led by a Team Captain, providing employees with stretch opportunities to lead people.
Covering such a wide range of areas allows our employees to contribute to different aspects of our culture. From participating in run/walk club during lunch hours to implementing new recycling standards or planning the next team gathering there is a chance for everyone to contribute and participate.
To meet the needs of a fast-paced economy, we need to have quick thinkers, movers, and shakers. Hiring for fit is essential across the organization, but ONB also hires for potential — what someone can do, not what they’ve done. How a candidate integrates with the culture is a top priority. The rest we can teach you.
To drive the organization forward, ONB is always open to new ideas and opportunities. Our CEO encourages any thoughts to come forward that may benefit the organization and our province. In return, we promote collaboration among associates to take their ideas and make them a reality.
In 16 all-too-short weeks with ONB, I have absorbed so much on how to build and sustain a strong culture. It certainly does not happen overnight. I have seen that culture is not one thing in particular; it’s a combination of resources, programs, atmosphere, and the right people. When those pillars are present, the culture becomes one of empowerment, diversity, and innovation.
Commitment to culture has helped ONB be recognized as one of Atlantic Canada’s Top Employers for 2017. To learn more about becoming part of the team, keep tabs on our careers page.
Written by Jordan McGrath