Successful Company Culture at Work: What It Really Takes
The world of work has changed dramatically in the last eighteen months, and as we head into a new year, there will be many companies who are looking to bring their employees back to the office or at least look for ways to improve their working culture.
Building a good company culture is not as easy as ordering a bunch of dim sum and drinking green tea, so companies must ensure that they take steps to understand what type of culture they want to foster, and then make sure that they build a company culture that is suitable for the company.
While many people think that money will motivate you to work harder, it is not just about cash; it is also about your career, fulfillment, and purpose.
When asking the question ‘What really motivates people?’ you would think that putting money first was the answer given by most people.
However, most business researchers will say that money is not the most important motivator, the top three motivators are usually
- Achievement and recognition – A large percentage of people say that they would work harder if they got recognition through a raise or bonus.
- Liking your job – making the job worthwhile or enjoyable to be in is almost as important as money.
- Recognition – from bosses, colleagues, or teammates for good performance and effort done in the job.
Why Is Company Culture Important?
So what is company culture? A culture is a set of values, norms, and behaviors that are widely shared and accepted by the people within the organization.
The old adage “culture eats strategy for breakfast” is never truer than when you look at some of today’s best-known companies.
They have been able to create dominant company cultures that are so strong that they can eat up many other aspects of an organization where there may be strategies or ideas that could be great on paper but end up being poor practice in execution.
However, when you have a great company culture, it is much easier to attract top talent and get people to stay with your company. Talented employees are attracted by a sense of purpose, feeling valued, and getting the support they need to do their job well.
With a great culture, employees are more likely to be engaged in their work, they will recommend your products or services to others, and they may even do some word-of-mouth marketing for free on social media which can be great for your business.
The Three Main Parts Of Company Culture At Work
A company’s culture can be broken down into three main groups: Customer Culture, Organizational Culture, and Corporate Culture.
Great customer culture is important for any business that wants to ensure that it has happy customers and can give them excellent service. Customer culture is something that a company should concentrate on from day one.
If a company first concentrates on deeper relationships with its current customers, then it is much easier to attract new ones.
A bad customer experience tells the world not just about your products, service or brand, but also about the type of company you are as a whole if customers are not given the support they need.
A few ways that companies can improve customer culture include:
- Customer service training: Get everyone in the organization to take part in the same training so that they know how to have good customer service.
- Empowered employees: Ensure employees are empowered and are able to help customers when they need it, even if this means going beyond their job description.
- A strong brand image: Make sure that frontline staff are empowered and know how they should deliver excellent customer service within your culture and brand image. This is something that needs to be emphasized at every level within the company and to be regularly reinforced through all media communication channels.
- Findability: Make it easy for customers to find your business and use your website. For this, it’s best to find an affordable SEO services to handle your search engine optimization, and keep your website on top for search rankings so customers can find you easily.
This is the part of a company culture that is aimed at the employees. Organizational cultures are based on key elements which can be generally separated into behavioral and cognitive factors
For instance, behavioral factors are things like rewards and achievements which help to motivate and give employees a sense of belonging within the organization. They can include:
- Rewards – both internal and external rewards are important, along with bonuses, cash prizes, and gifts for achievers, but also training opportunities and promotions can be valued as an achievement.
- Recognition – ensuring that everyone is valued and gets recognized for their contribution to the company is vital to having a great organizational culture.
- Support – everyone needs a bit of emotional support and encouragement when they are working, so having a good support network within the company is vital to ensuring that employees want to work harder.
Corporate culture refers to the company as a whole, not to individual employees. Corporate culture can be about core values, beliefs, and attitudes which are shared by all the employees in an organization. It may be about how managers work with staff or other external parties, or it may also cover things like relationships with clients and suppliers.
A good corporate culture can help you sell your products more easily because it is based on the company’s values, beliefs, and attitudes.
Should You Focus on Positivity or Creativity?
This is an interesting question, and it is something that companies and managers will have to debate long into the future.
There is no doubt about it, increased employee happiness has a positive effect on economic returns. So has creativity been given short shrift? Or should managers focus only on creativity when it comes to motivating employees? Is positivity more important or should we just stick to business as usual?
We have all seen many examples where people have demonstrated creativity at work by coming up with new ideas, new products, or new services. They know how good their products are, they are confident that they can sell them, and they can get the funding they require to start their business. However, in today’s competitive world, it is not enough for your ideas or products to be great, they also have to be profitable or you will not make any money.
Creativity can be a barometer of employee engagement, but it is not the only thing that matters. It’s easy to come up with ideas and pitch them internally, but in order for your good idea to turn into a profitable product, you need to work hard at turning it into a reality that your customers can enjoy and use every day.
This will require a lot of hard work on every level of your business from the CEO down to the junior members of staff.
Leading From The Top Down
For many companies, their brand image and culture are based around the top management. It is often those at the top who are most effective at communicating to staff how company values and policies should be acted on by everyone.
The top managers must be seen to be leading from the front so that employees are inspired to do a good job, as well as being rewarded accordingly. This will make them better at their jobs and more satisfied which will, in turn, lead to a positive corporate culture that attracts talent into your business.
When it comes down to it, the best way for a business leader to motivate people through their values is by communicating them clearly with all members of staff. For this, it must be communicated through a good culture (as mentioned above) as well as through training courses and performance evaluations.
Statistics indicate that recognition and rewards based on performance can have a positive impact on employees which will help to improve their work.
This may seem like a cliché, but your employees need to know that they are valued and have an important part to play in the company.
They will not just perform better, but they will feel good about coming to work every day because they know they are making a difference. You can build your business around them so that you get what you need from your team without much effort.
Interpersonal Aspects of Leadership
Interpersonal leadership refers to the relationship between leaders and their employees.
Relationships between leaders and the people that work for them are very important as they impact how good an employee is at their job, how much they are motivated, and how effective they are at doing their work.
A good leader understands the needs of their people and knows how to involve them in decisions that will help the business to be more productive.
Interpersonal leadership is essential to a company’s success, but it is not something that should be taken lightly. You need to see your employees as partners, as co-workers, as people who are performing a job that you need them to do.