On Culture and Being Named a Top Workplace
Last week, Lundbeck was named a 2018 Top Workplace by the Chicago Tribune and I’m incredibly proud of our achievement. The Top Workplace list is based solely on employee feedback, which makes this recognition especially meaningful. Companies are selected by an anonymous employee survey that measures several aspects of a workplace, including basics such as pay and benefits, but also alignment, effectiveness and employees’ connection to the company.
At Lundbeck, we believe our success – whether it be achieving an exciting recognition like Top Workplace or bringing an important new therapy to patients who need it – is fueled directly by our culture. We work hard to ensure all colleagues have meaningful opportunities to build a strong connection to the Lundbeck culture. But even more, we define our culture as a living thing. To us, culture is more than a corporate buzzword; it is something we grow and nourish. It takes years of hands-on effort from everyone to cultivate and enhance – all employees play a role in shaping our culture through their decisions and interactions. And that sense of empowerment came through in our Top Workplace ranking.
At the heart of it all: Our Beliefs
Culture is a key driver of what we’ve been able to achieve as an organization, and I know it will continue to be critical as we work to meet tomorrow’s challenges and opportunities in the pharmaceutical industry. To deepen our culture, this year, we introduced our 5 Beliefs. These Beliefs define what’s important to us – they are a stake we put in the ground so we can be clear about who we are and what we stand for.
Our 5 Beliefs:
- We are Patient-Driven
- We are Courageous
- We are Ambitious
- We are Passionate
- We are Responsible
These Beliefs help guide our actions and ensure we work toward our vision in the right way. We invest in opportunities for employees to fully understand the Beliefs and live them out in daily activities and decision-making. And, we regularly recognize employees who do so.
Our culture and the starfish
The story of the Lundbeck logo, the starfish, is well-known to our employees. It represents Lundbeck's commitment to making a difference, one patient at a time; but it also reflects our hands-on approach to corporate culture.
As the old fable goes, a young man was walking on a beach picking up stranded starfish and throwing them back into the sea. A passerby asked: "Why are you spending so much energy doing something that is only a waste of time? There are thousands of beaches and millions of starfish. How can you make any difference?" Looking at the small starfish in his hand before tossing it back to the safety of the sea, the young man replied: "It makes a difference to this one."
In reflecting on this story and its relevance to our culture and Beliefs, the recent passionate and patient-driven contributions of a colleague came to mind. Earlier this year, we launched a program that supports people living with Parkinson’s disease. SidekicksTM is an intergenerational program that brings together youth and people with Parkinson’s disease for art and storysharing projects. A Lundbeck team member, Marlyne, took it upon herself to organize her son’s Boy Scout troop to participate in the program. This was not a part of Marlyne’s job, and she didn’t do it because anyone asked her. Over the course of eight Saturdays, she corralled the Scouts and helped lead the program because she believed in its value, and she wanted to make a difference in the lives of the participants. Her starfish moment.
Lundbeck is filled with these sorts of examples – individual employees and our organization putting patients first again and again by living out our culture and our Beliefs. It’s one of the reasons that U.S. patient groups ranked us first in overall corporate reputation for the past three years. And, I know it’s why we have been recognized as a Top Workplace.