The best companies know that having a great company culture is critical to their overall success. You want your employees coming to work every day because they look forward to the challenges, their co-workers, and the office atmosphere - not just to pick up a paycheck. Of course, each culture has a different feel and unique qualities, but ultimately culture is about your employees and ensuring that they have a productive work environment. Quite simply, better moods = better performance.
So how do you meet company goals and get results while also creating an environment that people actually want to work in? Let's talk about 4 ingredients for types of company culture that develop great leaders and employees.
1. Walk this way
You know that mission statement that's hanging in the lobby? Well, when you have a thriving company culture, the leaders walk the walk. They're not just giving lip service to a placard that's hanging in the break room and sprinkled on company sales brochures. For a great company culture to thrive, everyone in the company must not only know the core values, but live them in their day to day work and responsibilities. That's why they're called "core" values, because they are at the center of everything your company is doing. Keeping this culture alive means sharing your company culture with prospective hires, creating marketing campaigns that bring your company culture to life, and of course encouraging management to make decisions based on these values.
2. A little fun & games
Companies that have types of company culture with team building also have a better team mentality. Employees who share in that spirit of healthy competition know that teams work together on all work related projects and help out where necessary. In a recent study by TINYpulse, an employee management firm, respondents cited a "poor company culture" as one of the top reasons for leaving a company, even more than compensation. When probed further, respondents said a positive work environment can make a tough job tolerable.
So to retain those employees that you worked so hard to recruit, find ways to create and nurture a positive and rewarding work environment. Creating fun ways to foster competition beyond the traditional "salesman of the month" contest can bring your organization together while creating a fun work environment. Coordinate a sports day between your company and the one down the street, start department softball teams, or host monthly cooking contests. It really doesn’t matter what the contest is or who wins, but giving everyone a chance to showcase their talents and enjoy themselves is what keeps a healthy company culture alive.
3. Everyone has a voice
Open communication is always a key element for companies that have a winning company environment. And no, this doesn't mean just handing out an annual survey whose results get sent out in an email to management. What open communication really means is that employees feel like they have a voice and that they can have a meaningful impact on the company and its direction. When you have only management making decisions, it's a surefire way to disengage your key employees, and possibly lose them to your competitors.
Initially, most companies start out with open lines of communication because it's just a few people starting up a new and exciting enterprise. But as some companies get bigger, they fall into the trap of limiting employee freedom and funneling feedback through the "proper channels". Over time, your employees are less and less involved in key decisions and their impact on the business is lost amongst red tape and "process". Unfortunately the open communication style is lost. To give your employees a voice and encouraging creative, inventive thinking, encourage town hall meetings, office hours, and brown bag lunch sessions designed to give employees a forum for sharing their opinions and ideas.
4. A game plan
When you're leading an organization, it's a good idea for people to feel like they're moving in the right direction. Companies that have an effective company culture have a game plan - and everyone knows what part they play in it. Developing an organizational roadmap allows you to put your culture into practice and creates guidelines for “how you do things” at the company. While there is always room for innovation and creativity, employees know what's expected of them and what constitutes a job well done. Making sure that everyone from the C-level to support staff knows what goals they're working on, how good work is rewarded, and how responsibilities are divided, creates a healthy structure to execute your company culture.
Don't let types of company culture that fail to reward employees destroy the business that you've worked hard to build. Culture, as you can see, isn't something that just sits on a shelf in the HR department; it must be worked on daily, and be consistent. Start with these 4 ingredients for a great company culture and watch your employees, and your business, thrive!