In this regular item we catch up with one of our members...
Danni Hill, Account Manager of POD Staffing in the North tells us what they’ve been up to over the past few months, their thoughts on freelance staff motivation and what she’d say to a senior new business target if she had 30 seconds with them in a lift.
IPM: Hi Danni, thanks for talking to us. How are things going at POD North at the moment? DH: Dreamy, thank you. York is one of my favourite cities as it holds so many fond memories close to my heart. Pantomime is what usually brings me back here (‘oh no it isn’t’), so when an opportunity came up where I could live here permanently, I jumped at the chance. So far, so good, minus the recent flooding in the city which has been very sad to watch - I’ve had to jump over sandbags for the past few days but luckily it is getting better and it’s so lovely to see the community really mucking in. In a nutshell, we have had such an exciting start to Pod North and I can’t wait to be a part of it evolving. We are in the running again as one of the finalists for Campaign’s Staffing Agency of the Year award too, so fingers crossed that we can hold onto our title!
IPM:How is your business developing and evolving – any interesting plans you can share with us?! DH: Well, you can’t get much more exciting than a brand-new office set up in York. We believe in natural growth at POD! Setting up a space in the North has been something on the cards for a very long time and it’s only now that we’ve been able to make it a reality. The staff on our books really are the heart and soul of our business, and to get more face time in with our Northern POD team was so important - it felt like the Southerners were getting all the love! Being originally from the North, the opportunity to be back really has been uplifting, and the people up here are a wonderful breed for sure. We are working with some amazing regional clients delivering some exciting work in the North - it’s great to be closer to the action and we are keen to widen the client net. So many major agencies and brands are now based in key cities from Birmingham right up to Glasgow, it’s so important to remember not everyone is based in London!
IPM:What do you see as being the biggest challenge the staffing industry currently faces? DH: I can genuinely say I have a passion for people and how they feel. Sadly, it feels like the industry is becoming more faceless and automated. If you don’t have a strong enough relationship with your people how do you expect them to work hard for you and care about their work? I know for a fact that jobs have come in that haven’t been the jazziest and teams have honestly and openly said to me if it wasn’t for you, I would have called in sick. That’s when you know you’ve done something right. I had it myself when you go out on the field and you arrive at one of the less glamorous jobs and you would have walked off had it not been for the respect and care for those in the office; you don’t want to let them down and that is the kind of work ethic we want to instil and drive into the North. We want all of our staff, and especially those based in the North to feel the love and know that we are not only a call away, but a little catch-up and a coffee away now that we’re nearby. We recently sent out a feedback survey to our entire database to find out what we are doing right and also more importantly how we could improve, and one of the answers was ‘it is hard to look after people in the North when there's not an office here.’ This reinforced our decision to open the new office, given it’s a move so clearly supported by our workforce. We listened and delivered and will continue to learn from our field team to keep improving the service for our amazing staff.
IPM:You find yourself in a lift with a new business target, you've got 30 seconds to make an impression on behalf of POD - what would you say and do? DH That’s an easy one. I love meeting new people, it’s always a highlight of my day. I’d do what I always do when meeting anyone – smile, say a big hello, introduce myself and usually go straight for the hug (keeping fingers crossed they hug back!). Then I’d ask about them and see what happens, it’s about human connection first and foremost! I would then ask how well they know the staff who represent them in the field - as a leading staffing agency we know our staff, right down to their passions, characteristics and how they take their brew. At POD we pride ourselves on our ability to match the right person to the right role and being so connected to our staff means that we nail this on the head each time. I’d make sure that by the time that person steps out of the lift, they know POD for our amazing people-powered business.
IPM:Thanks so much for your time Danni – have a great day! DH: You too! Have a wonderful day.
If you’d like to get in touch with POD Staffing, drop them a note at email@example.com