The spread of COVID-19 and the complete lockdown imposed all over the world saw the downfall of several systems and the shutting down of various businesses, but it also happened to bring out the strength in people – the strength to keep businesses initiatives and endeavours together while caring for human lives. Their ability to safeguard the lives of their employees and make sure their business prospers has set new standards for all. One such leader is Amit Ramani, Founder and CEO at Awfis, and one of the Top 100 Great People Managers of 2021 by Great Manager Institute ® published in Forbes India. We are delighted to share the practices that brought Amit Ramani and his company to the top!
Teammate Engagement & Development
At Awfis, the aim is to ensure that employees grow with the company. Amit Ramani believes that teammates are their strength.
One such initiative targeted towards employee growth and engagement launched during the COVID times was the competition – share your ideas and get rewarded for revenue generation. All ideas, big or small, were encouraged by all teammates along the impact areas of customer revenue generation, and new innovations that drive revenue. This initiative saw super success with teammates exploring the business side and working in teams to make their ideas successful. All teammates involved were recognised at a national platform and monetary rewards were also given. They were given larger responsibilities to drive these businesses and ensure their professional development with us.
Create Opportunity in Adversity
When COVID struck, Amit and his team went into a firefighting mode, putting the challenges of the business in front of them, and as a team, they hunkered down and realigned the existing objectives and key results and looked at the business with a renewed outlook.
They took up 4 key tasks: Survival – making hard decisions on immediate challenges; Resilience – making hard choices for the long term with extreme speed; Renewal – charting out the course for the next 1-2 years keeping in mind the new reality; Reimagine – innovating and pivoting the business based on a new reality. The result of these 4 principles was that 85% of the customers were retained, business expenses were reduced by 35% with discounts and waivers, and teammates are fully engaged with reduced attrition.
During the pandemic, Awfis’s first priority was their teammates’ health and safety. They began working from home. They provided a smart desk and ergonomic chair to all teammates with all the tech tools to enable them to be fully productive from home. During the second wave, they decided to provide a 24/7 emergency hotline service for their employees. It included online consultations with doctors, door delivery assistance for medicines and essentials, free RT–PCR tests at home and assistance with ICUs, and ambulances and oxygen cylinders. They bore the cost of the vaccination for the teammates and gave them a day off post-vaccination.
As the Founder and CEO of his company, Amit Ramani made sure to take care of his blue-collared workers as well. They made a decision to in-source 1% of the blue-collar staff to safeguard their interest and it gave them extremely loyal staff members. A decision taken to do the right thing has now turned into a significant business opportunity with 12+ blue-collar staff now being part of the Awfis family, driving Rs. 2 crores monthly revenue and contributing to their topline.
Great Managers Institute® aims to bring out the best in industry leaders. Our series “Your Business is Built by People You Nurture” shares the best employee engagement practices that India’s Top 100 Great People Managers of 2021 follow to achieve business growth.
According to GMI, this is what we can learn from Amit Ramani’s story
- A positive attitude towards failure goes a long way in keeping employees motivated
- Approachability will create a result-oriented mindset
- It is necessary to resolve worries while celebrating the wins
If you believe your leadership skills are at par with the best practices shared in this story, participate in Great People Manager Study 2022 and get a chance to feature in India’s Top 100 Great People Managers list. We are eager to hear your story. Register here!
Cheers to great leaders!