15 years – Always Innovating, Never Standing Still

Welcome to the new look Ariadne Associates website. If this is your first visit, please have a look round to find out what we offer. This is the first blog post on the new site – other posts are archived from our old site, and include a range of HR tips for SME such as this one, ones that caused some discussion among the HR community like this and a few miscellaneous work-related musings like this

As June 2014 sees the 15th Anniversary of Ariadne Associates (yes, we were founded in the last century) this post is more reflective and self referential than usual. But looking back over the last 15 years it’s worth recording that we’ve

  • Worked with over 100 companies and charities (more if you include work done as an associate)
  • Kept a core base of clients for over 10 years (in fact, we still work with our first ever client)
  • Issued over 1000 invoices (and got paid for virtually all of them!)
  • Worked in highly regulated environments – an airline, childcare, and social care
  • Worked in arts and media – 2 TV production companies, a theatre, and a video editing company
  • Worked in manufacturing – industrial glass production, metal fabrication and vehicle production, for example
  • Worked with professional services – marketing, venture capital, surveyors and accountants
  • Supported companies at the cutting edge of technology and those who work in a more traditional way
  • Worked with charities, family run firms, joint ventures between pubic and private sectors, partnerships, social enterprises and private limited companies.
  • Helped organisations of widely differing size – our biggest client employed 375 staff while the smallest is just recruiting their first employee.

And what do they all have in common? – people. It doesn’t matter what the organisation actually does, or its environment – their success is determined by having the right people (whether your business defines that as productive, efficient, entrepreneurial or technically competent) and failure by not having the right people (again, whether your business defines that as obstructive, incapable, or simply too many of them). Whatever the sector, people adapt to the culture and rules and the advice we give is tailored to that.

So if you’re looking for support for your business, we’d be more than happy to help – just contact us. And since self-praise is no recommendation, have a look at our Testimonials.

Not Just there for the Nasty Things in Life

Originally posted April 2014

When I arrived at a client recently, the receptionist greeted me cheerily with “hello Simon, nice to see you. I suppose this means we’ve got a staff problem!”

Now it’s true that for many smaller businesses, an “HR issue” means a problem with an employee – whether it’s sickness, disciplinary, work performance or something else. And it’s also true that in a small business these individual issues take on a much greater significance than in the large corporate world. Making sure they are handled correctly is important.

But it’s worth remembering that HR is “not just there for the nasty things in life”. Taking positive HR initiatives can help your business to grow and be more successful. For example in recent months I’ve worked with organisations to:

  • Support new first line managers to understand and develop their managerial roles
  • Integrate their HR systems into their quality management, allowing them to tender against much larger competitors
  • Review recruitment processes, enabling them to attract better quality candidates
  • Review their pay and benefits package, helping them to retain key staff.
  • Run team building sessions for work teams that weren’t gelling

So while I’m always happy to troubleshoot for a client, it’s very satisfying to help a business succeed by developing the people it employs.

If you’d like more information, please don’t hesitate to drop me an email or give me a ring. And as Ariadne Associates are accredited with both Growth Vouchers and Big Assist, as well as being Knowsley Council’s approved HR provider for its Business Growth programme, you may be able to get support with the costs