Every company has a culture. Creating and maintaining a positive work culture is one of the most crucial tasks for any company. Research shows that companies with a strong culture significantly outperform companies without a foundation of shared values. A positive working environment will lead to increased productivity, higher morale for workers and help businesses retain their skilled employees. On the flip side, staff members will also be more involved with a company that promotes optimism and encouragement.
What is company culture?
It’s the shared identity, values, attitudes, atmosphere, behaviors and beliefs that are the driving force behind how a company does its work. Culture unifies a company and shapes major decisions, such as who to hire or how to serve your customers. Here are steps on how to grow and shape your company culture.
Identify your company’s core values.
What are your goals and how do you want to achieve them? Deciding what is important to you and your business can also help you shape your procedures and practices to reflect what your company values.
Some examples of core values include:
- Open to new ideas
- Customer service
- Environmental stewardship
Honest communication is key for making employees feel more important and less out-of-touch with higher management. Openly engaging with employees and making them feel appreciated will help them build confidence and maintain a longer, healthier relationship with the company. Keep in regular communication with your employees so that you can see how the values are working in the day-to-day operations of your company.
Take care of your employees.
There’re several ways to ensure satisfaction amongst employees within the workplace. This will, of course, be dependent on the business itself and its chosen courses of action. Here are just a few of many options that can increase an employee's wellbeing:
- Benefits such as vacation/sick days, insurance, and retirement
- Flexible work hours in case of emergencies and doctor appointments
- Interaction and face time in order to collaborate and socialize
- Recognized achievements including some type of reward such as verbal praise or a wage increase
- Constructive criticism and appraisal that both encourage and commend
- Expressed interest in an employee's individual growth, including their professional and personal life
- Team building exercises
- Team lunches and other social events
Lead by example.
Filter every action you take as a leader of your company through the lens of your company values. This should impact everything from new policies and procedures to hiring practices. Give all of your teams a sense of ownership so that they can work within your company culture. Since good morale should start at the top of the company, small business owners need to show the desired positive culture that they’re trying to implement. Having a strong mission statement and a product or service that employees believe in will lay the foundation for a positive work culture.
Creating and maintaining a positive work culture will benefit you and employees by helping work become a more enjoyable place to be. Happy, satisfied employees will also contribute to a more positive customer experience for your clients, making them happier and more satisfied as well.
With a little work, you can make your business a positive place for both your employees and your clients. If you need advice for strengthening your business and defining your culture, find a Padgett advisor near you today!