I’ve always been low-key obsessed with workplace culture and leadership. What is it that drives us to want to show up and do great work? What is it that fills our Sunday nights with dread about the week ahead? Why do some people flourish, and others stay silent? These are the kind of questions that keep me awake at night [and distracted during meetings, if I’m honest!]
Put it this way – I’m the kinda person who immediately wants to ask you about your Myers Briggs profile at a party. [Classic ENTP!].
So, it’ll come as no surprise that when I first discovered TDP I was – quite literally – the heart-eyes emoji [😍]. Here was Cherie, a CEO who was clearly people and leadership and culture obsessed. And, here was a workplace that seemed happy and great and… unproblematic!
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had the joy of working with awesome teams and incredible leaders before, but there was just something special about TDP. Chances are – if you’re a TDP follower reading this – you’ve seen it too.
So, what is the magic behind the TDP culture? Great question, I’d love to tell you.
There’s kindness in the details
The first thing that struck me was the absolute attention to detail at TDP.
On your first day you arrive to a desk with personalised treats and all of your systems ready to go. Anything that normally feels awkward and tricky when you start a role has already been mitigated.
And that’s just the beginning.
You walk further into the office and there’s a tub of period undies, pads and tampons if you need them. There’s a freezer full of meals for when you’re busy, and a voucher from your favourite store on your birthday.
But it’s more than the gifts, and the honeymoon-period stuff. Behind every policy, change and challenge there’s a huge ammount of thought and care. The leadership at TDP is genuinely outstanding and that kindness spills into every detail.
Utopias are counterproductive
One of my favourite things about this workplace, though? Is that it’s not perfect. It’s real.
If you’re not meeting expectations, or you’re stepping outside of the values TDP upholds, you’ll know. You’ll receive firm and fair feedback, but most importantly, you’ll receive the support you need to readjust.
And there’s comfort in those boundaries. As much as we humans love affirmation, we also do so well knowing that issues aren’t going to be walked past, but dealt with and resolved.
Zero conflict in a workplace isn’t utopia – it’s hell. Conflict lets us face inevitable challenges, and move forward. Together.
Are there things that we could improve on, at TDP? Heck yeah. But do I feel sure-as-shit that we’ll get there? Double heck yeah.
This is where TDP shines, in my humble opinion. Every challenge is met with a genuinely human lens and you really can’t ask for more than that.
Systems and processes matter
The biggest surprise for me was how tight TDP’s systems and processes are, and, how much of a difference that makes to workplace culture.
With many dozens of clients and courses and thousands of pieces of content on the go, we need to be organised. There’s not a day that goes by where I wonder what’s required of me. And there’s no ‘too hard’ basket here when it comes to process improvement.
And the flow on effect of that? It’s safety.
No half-arsed engagement activity [like a pizza day, or table tennis table, or fancy dress day] will make up for dysfunction in a workplace.
At TDP, you know that if something is really hard, there’ll be someone who will help fix it. There’s nothing worse than trying to do good work and battling overly complex systems and processes. And stupid rules. Or, knowing the solution and having no buy-in from the top level of leadership.
Here, the systems and processes are set up with diversity in mind – they’re set up to work for the person, not just the bottom line. If you need more time processing things? That’s okay. If you need visual reminders or accommodations? That’s okay too.
This isn’t a business that flourishes despite the diverse needs of our people, it flourishes because of them. And I love that.
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