Peeling Back Culture as a Competitive Advantage

davinciAlmost 500 years ago, Leonardo da Vinci said, “People of accomplishment rarely sit back and let things happen to them. They go out and happen to things.”

That quote got me thinking about TELUS, and what’s been happening over the past several years. In particular, I’ve witnessed a difference in the way our company now operates with our customers, our business, our team and our community; four target audience pillars of our TELUS Leadership Philosophy.

I believe we now ‘go out there and happen to things’.

The autumn of 2013 was an extraordinary one at our organization laying grounds for my argument above.

On the community front, we fanned out across the country and participated in We Day – a wonderful and inspiring event; a movement, if you will, of young people leading local and global change. Our entire team couldn’t be prouder to be associated with and help the future leaders of tomorrow “shift the world from me to we.”

In terms of our business, we were proud to announce our Q3 financials which included the now industry-leading monthly postpaid wireless subscriber churn rate of just 0.99 per cent – our lowest since the first quarter of 2007. I can assure you this does not happen unless we’re going out there and happening to things.

As for our customers, we received the Commissioner for Complaints for Telecommunications Services (CCTS) annual report, which details the complaints they have received by customers with respect to the telecommunications industry. Why are we pleased? We were informed that overall complaints against the entire telecommunications industry as a whole went up 26 per cent yet complaints against TELUS fell by an impressive 27.1 per cent. Whilst we certainly aren’t gloating, and don’t want to see any Canadian affected by poor customer service, we’re proud of the Customers First journey we’ve been on, dedicated to improving the customer experience wherever and whenever we can.

And finally, the fourth pillar of excitement came in the form of our annual employee engagement survey results. (Note: we call ourselves team members) Employee engagement is a measure of whether we:

  • say good things about TELUS,
  • want to stay at the organization to do good things, and
  • strive to do our best work.

According to AON Hewitt – the partner we utilize for our engagement analysis – TELUS now sits at an employee engagement level of 83 per cent up from 53 per cent back in the summer of 2008. AON Hewitt confirmed for us, “With engagement at 83 per cent, TELUS is #1 globally amongst organizations of its size and composition.”

It’s a journey over here at TELUS and we’re not done yet.

But it has been a tremendous autumn, one we’re all extremely proud of from the vantage point of any of our four criteria concerning customers, business, team and community.

Here’s looking forward to 2014 and continuing to “go out and happen to things”.