We know when to listen and when to offer sound advice.
We’re a creative, strategic Business Services Agency, providing services across the whole HR function from recruitment, HR, Organisation Design and Development and L&D.
We know when to listen and when to offer sound advice.
We know process but we don't follow it blindly.
We speak plainly and positively, and askew industry jargon.
We help our clients create positive working environments.
Stronger relationships, create better outcomes.
Industry insight and advice in abundance.
In our work as HR professionals we have to have steps in place to ensure we are adhering to a professional code of conduct, to protect our clients and our own due diligence. But beyond the legal framework of these actions there is a moral reason to seek back up: To engage with a wider more diverse way of thinking that may ensure we don’t walk blindly into situations we should be avoiding. And to give us the sense of moral connection when faced with the many issues we see as an HR Professional.
This back up is powerful and far from being fluffy, it is the process for safeguarding both our professional integrity and our own well-being. It amazes us therefore, how many people don’t have the same principles. Back up is a positive action which safeguards your thinking and also gives you a diversity of thought. And in today’s world is a collaborative approach to a world which can easily feel siloed.
Whatever form back up comes in, be it mentors, colleagues to bounce ideas around, friends or more strategic partners, the engagement can only lead to success – success in business growth and personal growth. If all we are here for is make money this ensures we do so efficiently – not just ethically – and steers us towards our successful outcome.
But as the world is changing and there is more demand for more workplace ethics, and better behaviours in work, is it time to reach out for more back up? To avoid our own biases or financial errors and to help our own well-being? Does this back up not only create more diversity but help us sleep at night.
After one too many sleepless nights, fretting over business issues, isn’t it better to know there’s someone in your corner who’s championing your cause and helping spread the word of your work? We think so.
If you would like to talk to us about our Non Executive Director programme please get in touch. We offer a competitive price for our experience and a back up for you and your business that is priceless.
Ah the old familiar dumping line. The line that says, quite loudly, I just don’t like you anymore, I don’t get you and I’m not interested in you any longer. Painful to hear and yet commonly used. How is this relevant to HR you might ask? Well, in the minds of Fresh Seed people, VERY!
All too often we hear the familiar lines, well we don’t really have an HR function, we find them boring, or we have contracts so we don’t really need anything more. And then we feel like the desperate needy one, as we try to explain that HR just isn’t only legals but so much more, to an audience who in the most part have made up their minds and moved on. So for those who are interested let me give you a little more insight into what the function can do:
Why is this a thing? Imagine you have a TV show to film, edit and submit. The staff have enough to do to get the programme in the can, the pressure to submit in time and in budget. There are issues with staff but because of the overwhelming pressures to get the job done, your producers, directors and the rest of the crew just have to get on, there’s no time to listen to issues – even those inside work – so you ignore them. Everyone is unhappy but it’s just the nature of the business.
So here’s an alternative, because we know HR on site doesn’t work. How about you re-arrange the headcount to include someone who understands the filming process, AND is purely there to manage the people. A programme manager if you like. When you plan out your budget, look at who you’re taking on, differently – what roles can you fill with a less experienced person so that ultimately the budget is stretched to include this extra role. By doing so your load will be lighter because you’re not dealing with the management of people, your duty of care is adhered to, and you start to get a reputation for being the great team to work with because, you actually considered the humans in the room not just the roles that get the job done.
Duty of care
One of the most common phrases used by Fresh Seed. It seems no-one understands it’s not just about physical injury but well-being too. And no well-being is NOT fluffy. The industry has, a huge Mental Health issue – the recent UKIE census results found that 31% of those who responded had Mental Health issues, in an industry that is male dominated this is a significant concern and we believe only the tip of the iceberg for the industry as a whole. So your duty of care is serious. In all likelihood it’s the next MeToo issue waiting to rear it’s tragic head. Duty of Care is paramount. You need to plan it into your workforce, your policies and your behaviours. All the issues around Diversity & Inclusion, around managing people, around avoiding legal issues and changing your behaviours come down to your Duty of Care. If you’re baffled about what that means for you, get in touch and we’ll talk you through it.
Stop, don’t leave, this bit is more interesting than you think! Ok so it’s probably not that interesting but to us it’s another key area that with improvement overcomes so many gripes and moans and ultimately the issues you leave at HR’s doorstep to unpick.
Imagine if someone were to audit your processes and make your working life easier. Why wouldn’t you take it? We know, because you don’t know it exists, except it does, in your HR function.
The School of Misinformation
We think at Fresh Seed, that there’s something you don’t know about, something that HR has been hiding and you’ve not known to ask. We call it the “School of Misinformation” because you only ask and seek to find out about the stuff you know about. And somewhere in your heuristics – your brain short cuts – you haven’t found out about how to really manage people. Probably you don’t really care about it, because you do the job you do and managing people is just a small part of it. That’s where we come in; for us we know People Management is actually a science, an art and a skill set that you might find is more interesting than you thought. So here’s a little task, listen to a podcast, or watch a TED talk about managing people and then come back and talk to us about what you didn’t know was involved in this process.
We LOVE managing people at Fresh Seed. We see it as an art form and science all rolled into one. For us the art is in the behavioural sciences we use and the legal frameworks of employment law, plus a little bit of process know how. We know all of this as Organisation Design & Development and we think when it’s framed this way it’s much more accessible than HR.
We also think that much of stuff that’s left at HR’s doorstep are things you can’t deal with or don’t know how to and that’s how HR ended up with the reputation it has, because it seems to own the problems you just can’t get your head around and frankly, to you it’s probably really boring!
So perhaps, if you’ve read this you’ll get curious about the HR function and talk to us differently, and perhaps explore what we can do, or give us a call and find out more about this mysterious world you thought was all bad.
It’s been an interesting few months as we’ve continued to navigate the Covid-19 pandemic and the impact on the workforce. The initial shock of lockdown has now settled into uncertainty about the future and for many, how they return to work. Here we focus on the tangible actions you can take to manage the workforce back into work.
If, like me, you work in the Creative Industry you’ll know just how important freelancers are; so imagine, if you will a world without freelancers and all that they bring to our industry.
From Digital Marketers, UX designers, UX researchers, photographers, Creative Directors, Graphic Designers, Screen Skills Directors, dancers, actors, Marketing & PR you’ll understand how they operate and why they operate as they do. The industry just operates with them and it works; they bring talent, creativity and ideas that you simply don’t get from a permanent employee; perhaps borne from the uncertainty of it all, their ideas are truly the lifeblood of the industry.
Freelancers take the hit on holiday and sickness pay that a permanently employed person gets. They take the risk of being dropped with little to no notice on a project and they take the hit on being out of work for a period whilst waiting for other work. Yet despite all this, and despite their known importance across the industry they are still seen as the underdog to the wider world. And especially it would seem in the recent Government support following the Covid-19 pandemic. In a recent report by the Creative Industries Federation Andy Harrower, CEO, Directors UK said that the majority of Screen Directors are freelancers and as production halted due to the virus, their work has ceased. With the Creative Industry bringing £111.7billion to our economy – that’s more than aerospace, automotive, life sciences oil & gas combined [Our World without Culture Report June 2020 Creative Industries Federation] – why are we still overlooking the community of freelancers?
As the Creative Industry has grown over the last 20 years we are now, more than ever able to demonstrate how we have managed to adapt and grow, despite the banking crisis of 2008 and the following global recession. Perhaps now, in the face of another recession that will inevitably follow the Covid pandemic, wider industry will look to us once again to help them respond as their businesses unfold. But in order to do so, they need to ask not what we can do to be more like them, but what can they do to be more like us. Freelancer talent makes up an estimated 34% of the workforce, and with it brings a wider breadth of knowledge, a creative perspective and a deeper understanding of the creative process. They adapt, and integrate but also have a holistic view that brings so much to the ecosystem of our Creative Industry. If you are looking to adapt for the wider future of work, then it is this talent that may well help you do so.