So what’s the secret? According to Lane, it’s all down to delegation.
“All the decisions about corporate philanthropy, about who goes to what dinner, about charity things and industry things – rather than those being made by a small group of senior people, everyone gets their input,” says Lane.
At Solvera Solutions, every employee is given a $500 budget for “corporate development” and, according to Lane, they can choose to spend it however they wish.
“They can route money into a particular charity that is near and dear to them, they can take their team out for a pint after work, they can use the money to bring in pizza and cokes to celebrate a success. If they want to use the money to take out an ad in a hockey tournament brochure or to sponsor their kid’s team – they can do that, too,” says Lane.
“It’s a way of cascading the responsibility for the corporate ambassadorship and a mild way of getting everyone to act like an owner,” he explains. “It’s great for employees because they get to play above their weight in several instances.”
And the solution doesn’t just sit well with employees – senior leaders also benefit from the unusual arrangement.
“Execs don’t have to carry all the responsibility anymore,” says Lane, “It takes a lot off their shoulders.”
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Bob Lane heads up the HR department at Solvera Solutions – he says the award-winning company has found a unique way to get employees to act like owners while reducing senior leaders’ stress levels.