Building a Great Distributed Workforce Culture in Direct Selling

Born and raised in multicultural Canada, it should come as no surprise that LegalShield President, Martine Girotto sees bringing people together as a crucial aspect of building a culture in the workplace. The word that permeates through everything she says is ‘respect’. Girotto has been President for 2 years now, and is seeing the fruits of her labor as the culture she has built – based on pride, energy and genuine excitement about going to work – is producing impressive results. And that culture is not a stroke of luck or coincidence. It is the result of ‘intentional’ leadership.

Girotto sees the most fundamental aspect of building a culture as making sure individuals have a ‘good experience’. This may sound obvious but is often a forgotten facet of leadership. Girotto sees unappreciated value in respecting individuals, and in showing them that they are valued by the organization. Her intentional approach to creating a great company culture in direct selling begins with onboarding.

Onboarding must be consistent from day One

According to Girotto, the first 90 days of an individual’s time with an organization are crucial. She firmly believes that a good grounding can set that individual for a successful career. A poor start, on the other hand, in which an individual is not given the correct tools to establish themself, is likely to be counterproductive and lead to ‘people working in silos.’

It’s important to her that all individuals follow the same onboarding pathway. Out of respect for the individual, the pathway can be adapted slightly so that, in a distributed workforce located in a number of countries, it will resonate with each culture. But at its core, the pathway should remain consistent to foster a sense of togetherness and ‘being part of something bigger.’

Ongoing development helps when building a culture

Continuing success of an organization relies on continuing improvement of the individuals within it. This theory applies to individuals at all levels. Successful individuals are in a ‘continuous learning mode’ and seek opportunities to learn something new. This could be through reading books written by influential business leaders or by sharing ideas, successes – maybe even failures – among the distributed workforce.

LegalShield has adapted its approach to interpersonal interaction during the pandemic, and this new way of working looks set to stay. There are regular Zoom calls in which leadership teams inform their teams, celebrate successes and welcome new starters. And the President adds her own personal touch to virtual interactions through a monthly Facebook Live session. This is an opportunity to talk shop and to socialise with colleagues who may not otherwise mix. Wherever they are in the organization, or indeed in the world, Girotto sees these meets as a great opportunity to bring individuals together, to make them feel part of the family and to keep them engaged with the organization.

Moving forward, she aims to keep onboarding sessions online to allow newbies a better work-life balance. She respects their time, and Covid-19 has provided an opportunity to relook at the onboarding process and adapt it to the future of work.

The post-Covid hybrid model

Covid forced business across the globe to adapt their methods. Girotto is committed to continuing virtual collaboration where appropriate to have as little impact on distributors’ lives as possible while still ensuring they have the tools and knowledge necessary to succeed. But she also sees the benefit of continuing in-person meetings where appropriate. Direct selling is an industry that thrives on human relationships, and providing distributors the opportunity to connect is vital in helping togetherness to gel.

Post- covid, LegalShield will be adopting a hybrid model in which distributors will have access to virtual events and apps to carry out their tasks but also invited to in-person events for a personal touch and to get people interacting and feeling part of one institution with one goal.

Trends and data are key

Understanding the health of a business requires understanding of the data. As part of Girotto’s assessment and monitoring of distributors’ first 90 days, she looks for information on the individual, but also for trends within a cohort. With that, identifying trends is just the beginning. The key to success is acting on trends to deliver data-driven pathways to success which encourage working behaviors which drive improved results.

Once again, there is a hybrid approach to Girotto’s leadership style. Combining data-driven insights with a corporate arm around the shoulder, provides an individual with confidence, reassurance and knowledge which will help them succeed.

One of the biggest takeaways from speaking to Girotto, is her belief in surprising individuals with unexpected praise. Direct selling distributors like recognition, but monetary compensation or other types of bonuses quickly become an expectation for successful distributors. Mentioning a minor success or good piece of work in a conference or as part of a Zoom meeting, can provide unforeseen praise which shows individuals that they are valued and on a path of growth. Girotto’s leadership style seeks innovative ways to recognize individuals and keep them motivated and on task for the benefit of all.

To find out how Rallyware can help with building a culture through data-driven distributor onboarding and training, request a demo.