The Case Study

The Case Study

The pandemic brought employee success to the forefront,
and taught us all what we really needed.

When the pandemic hit, our purpose-driven outsourcing company was in the same position as everyone else: operating in a totally new environment and context, against the ridiculous backdrop of uncertainty, standing and staring at major disruptions to our business model and livelihood (we took a 35% revenue loss effectively overnight).

We focused on our people, prioritizing their safety, health and success. For all the lip service we’d paid to our values for years when the pandemic hit we were forced to turn those words and phrases into plans and actions. 

It was the right move to make as moral human beings. 

It also ended up being the extraordinarily right move for our business.

Since March 2020, Boldr has nearly 5x’d in size, revenue, and countries of operation, all while remaining bootstrapped and self-funded, improving margins, and giving our team members more space and support on everything from paid leave to Learning & Development to clearer impact initiatives. (We also built the world’s largest B-Corp certified BPO and PEO – we did all of this with a conscience.)

Prioritizing Employee Success worked for Boldr. When we looked at the companies we were working with who were thriving similarly, we saw the same focus, prioritization and values. People first.  

Prioritizing Employee Success also proved necessary as The Great Resignation – or more accurately, The Great Reckoning – gained momentum. Companies who’d already acknowledged and shifted their approach fundamentally, found themselves more insulated against the exodus of people because they were proactively addressing drivers of dissatisfaction and disengagement. 

Conversely, those organizations who did not respond at all or did so only superficially – such as forcing people to return to work – found themselves further squeezed. And because they never understood the problem in the first place, they started trying to solve their employees state of mind instead of addressing their state of work.

Prioritizing Employee Success went from a point of differentiation for Boldr and the companies we worked with, to a business imperative. If we didn’t prioritize Employee Success, Boldr would not be here today. 

Employee Success is critical to sustainable Organizational Growth and Success.

At the time of writing, and since embracing an Employee Success mindset in response to the pandemic, here’s what Boldr experienced over 2 years:

  • 8x Boldr’s Valuation
  • 5x Team Size
  • 4.5x Revenue (with 2022 scorching past a 2x revenue trajectory by the end of February 2022)
  • Expanded to 5 geographic locations (from 1 location to 2 in the Philippines, 1 location in South Africa, 1 location in Mexico, and a fully virtual team in Canada).
  • Remained bootstrapped and self-funded entering 2022 with optionality on funding models and sources
  • Transformed Team Member eNPS, participation, ownership, health and wellness, and collaboration

As I reflect on my work at Boldr, it’s undeniable that our first decision at the start of the pandemic — to prioritize Team Member Health and Success — was our most powerful and correct one. It is this decision that set the stage and foundation for the growth we achieved and, for the way in which we achieved it.

View the full article here.

The Reckoning

The past few years have seen record numbers of employees leaving jobs, sometimes without locking in something new. Additionally, companies are having to completely transform both how they operate and how they compensate their people to stem the tide.

A simple look at Gallup Employee Engagement data over the past 20 years coupled with emerging trends around employee dissatisfaction with their work because people are (a) doing work that can and should be automated and (b) doing work that doesn’t reflect their best abilities to contribute tells us that this reckoning was way overdue.

The Case Study

When the pandemic hit globally in March 2020, Boldr was a small BPO and PEO with one office in Manila, Philippines. We decided to prioritize (1a) team member health and safety and (1b) client health and success, even as 35% of our revenue disappeared almost overnight.

Operating with integrity and focusing on making our employees successful, helped transform our operating environment and our position in the eyes of the market. Which is why today, two years later, Boldr has 5x’d in team size, revenue, and geographic footprint, while also 8x’ing enterprise value. Today Boldr has become the largest B-Corp certified BPO and PEO in the world. 

The Precedents

The two major commercial trends of the past 20 years have been (1) digital influence on marketing and advertising and (2) the rise of customer experience as the primary way to differentiate and win in the market. Both started out as innovations, often fighting an uphill battle against historical ways of doing business.

Companies that adopted both early and succeeded at both sustainably, thrived. Ultimately, both ended up breeding copycats and as a result, both shifted from ways to differentiate to requirements, setting a new baseline of competencies and expectations upon which businesses would have to build further. Employee Success is the next trend and frontier.

The Catalog

There’s an increasing volume of data highlighting the power of employees feeling more supported, more equipped, and more valued. On the upside, it’s undeniable that feeling valued leads to massive increases in productivity.

Separately and inversely, feeling undervalued leaves us at the doorstep of The Great Reckoning. The pandemic has taken what makes people feel valued to entirely new heights, however, as the backdrop and context for personal happiness has risen in prominence. It’s why Employee Success needs our greatest time and attention.

The Moment of Truth

The benefit to being on the early side of Employee Success as a business imperative is the ability to write the playbook. The best playbooks always start with a commitment to hearing, understanding and paying attention to the challenge and the opportunities it presents.

Next, the way forward is by exploring other disciplines that addressed similar types of concerns with other constituents (clients are obvious, but also, exploring how companies engaged with community members, suppliers, partners and investors can surface incredible ideas and opportunities)