For Tattersfield, what she places at the heart of her day-to-day life and that of the agency is the prioritising of empathy and kindness in business. This empathy extends to dismantling the presenteeism that permeates across the industry and the recognition, she adds, that stress destroys creativity.
If a person is stressed, their clarity of though diminishes and, Tattersfield adds, their “productivity literally dives off a cliff.” Time spent in the office is not what people should be clocking, believes Tattersfield. Indeed, she says, “I utterly believe that the majority of people out there could condense their working week into a four-day week.”
While Tattersfield is a vocal supporter of the brilliant work NABS does in the industry, she feels that what also needs to be developed is an internal support framework, “of things that can catch people and help.” This can help to create an environment in which people feel they can speak up for what they want and what they need to do their job to the best of their ability.
Building a sense of community
Since her arrival in the agency, Tattersfield has set about building a sense of internal community, with her attitude being to “approach every situation from a point of being in the light rather than in darkness and distrust.”
She says that ironically, when people have a problem HR is often the last place they’ll go. What she constantly stresses is the importance of putting the human back in human resources, of understanding that “you never know what’s going in peoples’ world.” This equally extends to providing support for managers, not simply presuming they can manage from the get-go. Providing managers with training and developing their skillset is key to instilling them with confidence. “They can be key in sorting a lot of issues out,” Tattersfield adds.
She is focused on the importance of “synchronicity; people do really well when they’re in groups together and all doing the same activity together.” This helps to grow and develop the sense of community. “That’s a de-stresser itself,” she adds.
With the internal initiatives she’s introduced, Tattersfield has taken a therapeutic angle, from breathing workshops, a contemplation room, investing in the Headspace app for all staff and encouraging walking meetings. One of their strategy team also launched an agency choir last year that was open to everyone. “HR doesn’t always have to come up with the idea,” she says.
The agency network has an annual Foundation Day that happens at the end of September where they give back to the community. This year 30 people from the London office worked with Living Under One Sun in Tottenham Hale, spending the day gardening on an allotment alongside the organisation’s founder, Leila.
Over the course of her career, Tattersfield explains, “I’ve definitely learned that in human resources, unless you can get all these people on side and genuinely have a good relationship with them, you won’t get anything done.”