With the ever-changing global markets, multi-generational shifts in organizations and the pressure to continue to grow and expand, how do companies survive and not only survive but thrive? There are many layers to the answer, including employee engagement and culture.

JPEG-1400-Pixel-HCMx-LogoIn our latest episode of HCMx radio, we met with the learning industry and culture expert from Dell, Dr. Sydney Savion. Dr. Savion reveals the strategy that Dell put in place to cultivate engagement, and embrace and celebrate diversity through conversations and awareness – all contributing to foster a positive and meaningful culture based on their core values.

In Brandon Hall Group’s 2014 Employee Engagement Study, over 80% of companies that prioritized engagement were able to reduce turnover. Companies must be able to translate engagement strategies to business results. This can be challenging considering how engagement is linked to every other area of talent management.

This year we continued to study this topic and dove deeper in what employee engagement and culture means to an organization. We discovered through our study on Employment Value Proposition (EVP) 2015, that the relationship between the employer and employee drives an organization’s ability to attract and retain talent and to affect positive business outcomes. Yet, establishing a formal strategy for EVP is still evolving for many organizations. Our research shows those companies that have elements of a formal EVP strategy were driven by two main objectives for establishing one:

  • Increasing employee engagement (85%)
  • Improving attraction and retention of top talent (84%)

Dr. Savion’s philosophy and principles further supported the findings in Brandon Group’s 2015 EVP Study. Our research showed other vital factors contributing to attracting and retaining talent are the opportunity to do challenging and meaningful work, and belief in organizational vision and mission (both at 87%).

Companies can learn a lot from Dr. Savion in how she approaches engagement across these generational cohorts by identifying a common theme that affects human condition. Dell has found the following strategies to be successful:

  • Offering a work-life balance
  • Implementing informal learning networks through the use of a variety of applications including Chatter, Facebook, and crowdsourcing tools
  • Building skills for the future – investing in technologies or training such as Toastmasters, competency mapping, employee rotation, among others
  • Committing to innovation – Dell hosted an Innovation in Teaching & Learning Think Tank
  • Personalized learning – Dell recently consolidated to one LMS solution (Saba Cloud), which allows them to offer more personalized learning through one platform

Join us! Go to the HCMx Radio site any time to download the show.

Rachel Cooke, Chief Operating Officer
Brandon Hall Group


Rachel Cooke

Chief Operating Officer Rachel Cooke Rachel is responsible for business operations including overseeing client services, research events and project management. Prior to joining Brandon Hall Group, Rachel was the Chief Operating Officer Co-founder of AC Growth. Rachel has over 15 years of experience in sales, marketing, business development, and sales performance management. Prior to AC Growth, she held several senior management roles and was on the leadership team at Bersin & Associates, a pioneer analyst firm in e-learning and now industry leading HR and talent Research Company. In her Senior Director role, Rachel developed the strategy and led the commercial execution of the solution provider vertical, and grew the vertical into the company’s largest market segment. In her role as Director of Sales, Rachel developed and led a team of senior account executives focused on acquiring global strategic accounts. Rachel was solely responsible for developing key business relationships with over ninety companies including industry icons, such as: Adidas, Hewlett-Packard, Toyota, Oracle, Starbucks, Avnet, Boeing, Kaiser Permanente, Safeway Inc., Wells Fargo, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Clorox and Affiliated Computer Services. Rachel began her career in the banking, media and hospitality industries. In these industries, Rachel held several key senior management and executive sales positions. Rachel received a BA in social science and interdisciplinary studies with honors from Florida Atlantic University. Rachel continued her postgraduate education by completing a series of executive management education courses from American Management Association.