Martin James Network awarded runner-up in Disruptive HR Better Normal Awards

Written by Martin James Admin

Martin James Network awarded runner-up in Disruptive HR Better Normal Awards

We’re delighted to announce that we’ve been named runner-up in the Disruptive HR Better Normal awards.  

Recognising our leaders’ responses to the Coronavirus pandemic, the network was given runner-up status for the ‘Who Knew Our Managers Were This Human?’ category.

We were congratulated in particular for our innovative and disruptive initiatives during lockdown and beyond, including:


Creative director, Dan Osadciw, launched free daily HIIT workouts to help keep us fit and healthy during lockdown. Now, Dan is running three sessions per week and the Facebook group is open to anyone to join.

Wellbeing Wednesdays

Each week, TalkOut interviewed key leaders from across the business who spoke candidly about their life, careers, mental health and how they were finding lockdown. This included an interview with our very own chief operating officer, Ayyab Cockburn, who talked about the importance of creating cultures of care and wellbeing in the workplace.

Our Mini Tribe Adventures

Managing partner, Michelle Ivins, set up a Facebook community group to support parents and spread positivity throughout lockdown. Featuring kids activities, home schooling tips and general positive news, the group has nearly 5,000 active members.

This is Us: diversity and inclusion

Our people team amped up its diversity and inclusion strategy, This is Us, with a new employee forum. Employees were given the opportunity to have an open discussion about perceptions of race and equality following the increased prominence of the Black Lives Matter movement. The forums will now be held regularly and will form a key part of the network wide approach to diversity and inclusion.

Updates from Jim

We had regular updates from our founder and chair person, Jim. Helping to keep us all motivated, Jim produced videos from home where he talked about mental health and the importance of staying connected. These were shared to employees using our fantastic internal communications and wellbeing tool, the TalkOut app.

Ian Thomas, Practice Development Officer for the Martin James Foundation who took part in some of the initiatives said “Person cantered leadership helps people feel part of something they want to nurture and shelter, it is fundamental to our working community, in common-unity.”

Talking about the awards, group people director, Mark Shrimpton, said: “I’m really proud that the Martin James Network leaders have been recognised for their response to Coronavirus.

“Whether it was physical or mental wellbeing support, discussions on world topics, or simply just having fun, there was such a wide range of activities for employees to get involved with.

“A huge thanks to everyone who responded so positively and got involved – it really shows the care and support within the network.

“Covid may have kept us apart, but our managers made sure we stayed connected.”