The People Strategy at Maxis

The People Strategy at Maxis

Published 30th January 2018
Adzhar Ibrahim

Head of People & Organisation, Maxis 

Published 30th January 2018

Maxis believes in creating culture from the inside-out. Read on for how the team is motivated, how the strategy evolves, and how Maxis contextualises best practices from the broader HR community.

Remaining agile and versatile

Maxis believes in creating the right kind of culture for its ambition. However, creating the right culture and mindset is a massive undertaking that requires overturning much of the past traditions and practices. It is not a part-time job for the faint of heart.

Earlier, Maxis focused on “fixing” a lot of what was wrong or unsuitable for the journey ahead. Much of these were the results of too many years of continuous and uninterrupted success, which tends to build complacency. Early on, a core part of the goals we set ourselves was to build collaboration and an open and transparent working environment. Combined together with a strong and shared ambition, agility and versatility were easily achieved.

How to carve out a strategic advantage

Businesswise, Maxis focused on giving its customers the best experience possible. This resulted in us being the preferred provider even in an aggressive price-driven environment. This meant massive and early investment in building the best network, and revamping our entire product lines to come up with the right and relevant products and pricing, and refreshing our brand to be in line with our value proposition. All these major undertakings can only happen if supported by the right culture, mindset, and talent.

Culture-wise, we created a strong employee value proposition through a working environment that favours passion and collaboration. We revamped the organisational structure and the terms and conditions of employment to create a flat structure. We reduced the number of our managers and pushed the idea that employees must be forward-leaning in taking charge of their own career growth. We revamped the performance and rewards system to create a company with a strong performance culture with strong retention of the top talent (those with high performance and potential).

Ensuring the people strategy is effective

We truly believe that if we set the right culture, everything else becomes easy. Hence our focus on setting the right culture, apart from being driven by practical needs, is also driven by sincere beliefs on what makes humans tick. It is a truly shared vision and values that is clearly visible across the entire company.

The other reason why we were successful was that the culture was set right at the top. It was not just words and rhetoric, but clear and tangible efforts to create a new way of working.

Culture is not just an HR priority. It is the priority of the entire leadership team and is manifested in everything we do in every area we touch.

We do not claim our answers are the perfect answers, but we do feel they are the right answers for us, and they work for us because we feel we own them.

How to motivate the team

At Maxis, having a shared common ambition to become a truly digital company is very attractive and inspiring, and hence motivating. Paired with the opportunity to work in a refreshing, open, and transparent environment alongside great leaders, this helps us to attract and keep the best talents.

Our vision is simple– to be a company admired for excellence. That is a vision that can be understood and owned by every member of the Maxis family and is the force that pushes us in our daily efforts to create a great company.

How Maxis contextualises best practices or learnings from the HR community

Maxis keeps its ears open to best practices, but ultimately believes that we must come up with our own solutions that best meets our culture and ambition. Our value of collaboration is put to good use a lot to come up with unique options and solutions that ultimately work well for us because we feel we own the options and solutions. And at times, there is a lot of value in purposely taking on a unique approach that differentiates us versus the others, even if these approaches are riskier.

Are you an HR leader interested in expanding your skill-set, including strategy, collaboration, and corporate agility? The HR Leaders Programme covers these topics and more. 

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