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November, 2023

Celebrating and building a culture of learning at ANZ

Written by Stephanie Conti, ANZ Manager, Customer Centricity & Capability.

Having worked in HR and making the move to marketing some years ago, it’s been a fascinating time seeing the change both industries face. The culmination of my experience has instilled an important philosophy in me: building a culture of learning in your organisation is an essential part of not only the success of a business, but more importantly, the wellbeing and development of both you and your team.

By making subtle changes to how we approach work and tackle problems, we can be better equipped to make the most of each day. Plus, adding that positive spin is infectious – soon you’ll see ripple effects extending beyond your team, and into your broader organisation.

There is a reason why I say it’s infectious. In August 2023, we held our first ever ANZ Marketing Masters Summit, bringing together over 200 ANZ marketers along with key learning partners in a celebration of marketing and learning. It was the culmination of months of hard, but rewarding work, featuring keynote speakers, presentations, hands on workshops and breakout sessions, delivered by both internal and external experts. The Summit was held across two locations at Melbourne’s ANZ HQ, and in ANZ’s HQ in Auckland. The feedback has been absolutely fantastic, with the common message being that people walked away feeling inspired and understanding that we’re serious about growth and development and [investing] time in it.

The Summit created an opportunity for marketers to reset, refocus, and realign themselves with our core learning program, Marketing Masters, to help continue in driving a culture for learning. The event not only provided marketing colleagues a chance to connect in person, but allow space for staff to learn, reflect on their careers and understand the importance in upskilling and reskilling given the rapidly changing environment we all find ourselves in.

This rate of change we experience on micro and macro levels in the workplace is faster than ever – particularly with the advent of technology and the internet. As such, we need to enable ourselves to harness the potential this offers, and keep our minds open to new ways of working. An inherent part of keeping up is being open to learning something new. It doesn’t need to be as dramatic as picking up a new skill entirely, at least not at first. Being closed-off from what is happening around you causes extra work in the long run, when you could be hindering your teammates in the meantime.

To start building a culture of learning in your team, lead by example. Identify an area everyone could use more development in, and employ team training either internally or externally to address it. If it’s external, like a seminar or conference, remember to bring those learnings back to your organisation to foster further learnings and insights amongst  colleagues and beyond.

Share around interesting news or tidbits pertaining to your work and industry to keep people informed and engaged, and encourage them to do the same. Better yet, find ways for your marketers to connect with, or learn, from other departments, and to get those departments clear on what you all need to achieve for the organisation. Cross functional sharing not only provides social interaction, but also generates ideas, knowledge, and the ability to share builds on approaches to work. Continue providing those learning opportunities, big and small, and shift your language to be more supportive of people stepping outside their comfort zone.

For ANZ, investing in our Marketing Masters program has supported team engagement, staff retention and to attract top talent. By building that culture of learning, you and your team will be on the path to be better marketers than ever before. You don’t need to make giant strides each day to transform your approach and enhance your output, just shift your mindset and culture to lean into what is new and different to you. That is why I found myself in marketing, and why I stay there – because there is so much to learn in an industry that is far from static.