GVK-Siya Zama: Continuing a culture of success
Studies have shown that a company’s culture - the unique business environment that results from the values and actions of management and staff - has a major impact on its bottom line. This is because the culture has a direct bearing on employee turnover, which influences productivity and, in turn, success.
Recognising this, GVK-Siya Zama, one of the most successful and profitable privately-owned and empowered construction companies in South Africa, has recently embarked on a roadshow - driven by the group’s CEO, Eben Meyburgh - to educate employees across the country on the values that are core to its culture and have been crucial to its success over the past 57 years. In addition, a short animated video, which lives on the company’s website, was created to appeal to the growing millennial workforce.
Meyburgh says: “We have a long-standing reputation for our family feel - valuing our employees, treating them as partners, engaging and motivating them as well as encouraging an owner-management style. I believe that this unique culture was established because the original founders, Gordon Verhoef and Earl Krause, were involved in the business for so long. Their values have been the backbone of the business for decades and remain instilled in the numerous individuals with long service. These employees are prepared to go the extra mile and have a strong sense of entrepreneurial ownership.”
He continues: “With the growth of the business necessitating the recruitment of new staff, particularly from the millennial talent pool, we wanted to ensure that we maintain our unique culture and perpetuate the core beliefs upon which our company was built for future generations of GVK-Siya Zama family members.”
Regarding the roadshow, Meyburgh shares: “Such a refresher does wonders for existing staff and also assists us in pursuing our objective of becoming the employer of choice in the construction industry by attracting and retaining talent whose values align with our own.”
GVK-Siya Zama’s values - such as learning and sharing, working and winning in teams, respect and care as well as accountability with integrity - have been distilled into a range of relevant, work-related, desirable behaviours. These will form an integral part of the company’s quarterly performance appraisals and each employee will be measured on how they live these values. The aim is to entrench these behaviours in service to the company’s culture.
“I believe that a values-based business provides a fertile ground for talented employees to excel. Furthermore, a skilled, engaged and energised workforce who are united around shared values is integral to the delivery of consistent quality and exceptional service to clients. Ultimately, values provide the foundation and framework to build a successful and sustainable business,” concludes Meyburgh.