As Clear Channel’s HR Director, Joanne Henderson, is a key champion for Clear Channel’s Fairness value.
Following the company’s recent internal Happiness survey, we asked Jo to take us through the company’s focus on Fairness, the steps Clear Channel is taking to promote diversity and inclusion within the business, as well as how she feels it’s the people at Clear Channel that are really driving Fairness forward.
“As HR Director I have a very broad role” Jo begins. “But my work with Fairness and staff culture is the area that I enjoy the most. In the six years since I joined Clear Channel, I feel we’ve always had a very strong company culture and great staff engagement, but with the introduction of Fairness last year we’re now building on that and establishing it as a core company value that actively promotes diversity and inclusion across the business.”
“We deliberately didn’t have a huge jazz-hands-esq launch for Fairness, because we wanted it to be more of a natural growth over time; letting staff engage and guide our way. We also took time to learn before we initiated any changes; our entire leadership team went on a full day’s workshop to explore and challenge what we thought we knew about Fairness, and how we could change things at Clear Channel.”
“We’re just beginning to receive the results of our second Happiness Index survey”, Jo explains. “This is an internal survey that we started last year, and will now run every six months across the UK business, which gives staff a chance to feedback on how they feel the business is doing, and what steps could be taken to make things fairer and more inclusive. We really use it as a tool to help shape how we move forward.”
“It’s important that we get to hear from everyone in the business and inform our leadership team on some of the things they might not hear about day-to-day. We make sure the results are talked about openly and that we don’t shy away from any of the answers. The comments in the survey and the conversations we have about the results are very insightful as to what’s most important to our teams.”
The UK Happiness Index survey is also complimented each year by a global Clear Channel International (CCI) survey that acts as benchmark for all CCI businesses, allowing different teams to learn from each other and help the business align their Fairness approach.
Jo explains that she wants employees to feel free to do and say things that can make the business better.
“It’s great to have the staff shape what Fairness becomes and means. One of the best ways of doing this is having staff pro-actively push projects and campaigns that further diversity and inclusion. Great examples of this over the past year have been our work supporting Bloom – the professional network for women in communications, as well as the important 56 Black Men project created by Cephas Williams.”
“We’ve also partnered with Brixton Finishing School, to help provide talented young people from diverse backgrounds with opportunities to learn about the media industry and launch future careers. Supporting charities and campaigns across events such as Mental Health Week, Black History Month, and Pride, have also been really important.”
“Clear Channel are able to support a lot of influential projects such as these, after staff members have pro-actively reached out and communicated how they thought Clear Channel could help make a difference. It’s a great way to get staff engaged with what we’re already doing and help Fairness evolve.”
For Jo, creating a great place to work and a fair culture, she believes is a vital anchor for a business in an ever changing world.
“As a mother with three young children, I’ve personally experienced how supportive Clear Channel is around things such as flexible working hours and juggling family life, and I hope others around the business have as well. The next step is building what we already have put in place, taking on suggestions from staff, and making sure that all these opportunities are available to all staff members from across the business, as well as looking at our policies when recruiting.”
“The industry is obviously going through an exciting and turbulent time” Jo says. “It’s great because we get to see lots of things in Out of Home changing and evolving, but what I feel will stay the same at Clear Channel are our values. Through things such as ‘The Difference’ we’ll continue to go beyond advertising and contribute to communities and the local environment, and through Fairness we’ll hopefully continue to draw in a diverse and engaged team.”
“Together I believe, as a business, we can now be much bolder in cementing ourselves as an industry leader in this regard – forward-thinking, inclusive, and progressive. This way we not only support all staff across the business, but we can also lead the way in creating a supportive and fairer culture across the industry, that works for everyone.”