Organizations, from big to small businesses, have a culture. The culture mainly concerns the environment where employees carry out work, but it also includes the behaviors of the people within the organization and the meaning that’s attached to those attitudes.
To build a strong culture for your company, you need to devote in-depth resources. If you don’t recognize and shape this culture, you’ll fail to take advantage of an opportunity that’ll make a positive impact on the lives of your employees and guarantee the success of your company.
The following strategies will help you build a company culture that you and the members of your team will be proud of and will enable your business to grow.
1. Be the First One to Arrive and Leave
In the morning, you hit the snooze button and take on an extra 20 minutes of sleep. This is a lot more tempting than waking up and getting to work early. Even if you’re not a morning person, make an early start and be the first one to show up at the office. Company culture starts with leadership, so set an example for the employees. Establish a standard for others to follow and synchronize the employees towards your vision. Do you want people to get to work on time? You’d better be the early bird.
In the modern business world, you have to work smarter, not longer. Productivity is increased when you’re not wasting time and using your skills to minimize tasks and extra steps. When you get to work early, it’s calm and quiet. So, you can attend some of the most pressing issues on the agenda. Leaving the office isn’t so simple. You work until you accomplish what you hoped. Instead of avoiding last-minute appointments or meetings, you should better get to it. Always be the last one out of the office. If you don’t sneak out of work early, neither will the members of your team. This suggestion may sound intimidating, yet it’s effective.
2. Create A Common Language
Things are rapidly changing. Generations show more interest in the way their employers talk and listen to them. They’re not interested in office politics, but rather a collaboration, transparency, and feedback. Therefore, good communication within the organization is imperative. Individuals are working differently now and, if you want to set your team up for success, create a common language. Since the power is in the words and the words you use matter a lot, here are some tips to get over the language barrier:
- Speak less and say more: Brevity is more important than ever in the age of information overload. A common language increases speed, which in turn helps complete tasks faster. Overcome the three tendencies that prevent entrepreneurs from being brief: overexplaining, underexplaining, and missing the point. Use terms and phrases that effectively communicate the message and save you precious time.
- Show your employees you trust them: If you get rid of ambiguity, staff members will proceed with confidence, instead of constantly trying to figure out the meaning behind words. People who feel valued are more likely to give their best for the organization. Trust your employees, as they trust you. This is the only way to achieve greatness.
- Set up face time whenever possible: Generally, teams and managers are staffed onsite, which gives the chance for face-to-face communication. Yet, when the team is geographically dispersed, you rely on technology like fax, email, and video conferencing. Whenever possible, meet with the team members in person. Not only can you deliver important communications, but also see the people with whom you’re talking.
3. Describe Your Company Culture
Maybe your company culture isn’t well-defined. Why is it so important to give a detailed account in words? Because it can carry weight in the way you make decisions, such as who to hire or how you interact with other businesses. Right now, you can’t accurately describe the corporate culture. If it falls into the implied culture category, make an effort and find the best words that describe the workplace. Once you’ve determined where your company culture is and where you want it to be, try to define it.
Melanie Sovann, a professional writer at Studicus who has worked with some of the biggest names in the industry, says that “One word can speak a great deal about your company culture. Giving serious thought to what you’re about to say is important. Examples of words that you can use to promote your business are fun, challenging, transparent, caring, professional, diverse, innovative, teamwork, integrity, etc. Your corporate culture manifests distinct characteristics. Understand what kind of work environment you have and make sure your goal and message renovate with leadership.”
Decide what attributes you want to keep and come up with a strategy to promote them. Most importantly, get the employees aligned with the company culture.
4. Focus on Your Employees’ Wellbeing
The new generation of employees drives companies to evolve, which is great for the wellbeing of all. If you want to improve employee wellbeing and show that you really care, this is what you need to do:
- Create an onsite fitness center: Physical activity makes the body look good and helps balance work with life. What’s more, it makes employees feel better and be more productive. Design an onsite fitness center and rejuvenate the organization. Once workers understand how much you care about them, they’ll be more cooperative and happier.
- Establish flexible working hours: Reduce stress and increase wellbeing by offering flexible working hours. People don’t have to work the classic eight-hour shift. Thanks to email and cloud computing, they can complete their tasks at any hour of the day.
- Explore retirement coaching: Retirement coaching is what offers employees control over the future. Most individuals are unprepared when it comes down to navigating this final path. This is why you should arrange for specialized instruction. Help the staff members make a solid plan for retirement.
5. Think Hard Before You Hire
As far as recruiting new team members is concerned, it’s not a good idea to rush the process. It takes time to find someone who is the right culture fit. Besides job experience and career history, take into consideration soft skills – in other words, personal attributes. There are many things to consider, such as communication, emotional intelligence, and creativity. Of course, the list doesn’t end here. Know what soft skills you need, as not all characteristics can drive the business forward. Structure the questions of the interview so that you can identify soft skills right away.
The company career page can be one of the most powerful attraction tools when it comes down to candidates. Use this section of the website, as well as your social media accounts, to tell prospective employees how they should behave, do their jobs, and how things are done. Instead of simply listing values and commands, share stories that prove the meaning of your words. Finally, yet importantly, include diversity into the equation. You can’t afford to discard different cultures and lifestyles just because you might not agree with them.
6. Social Proof Your Brand
Building social proof means instilling trust in people and creating a trustworthy brand. The members of your team spend a great deal of time at the office, so it’s only normal that they influence one another in terms of aspects such as leadership, conformity, and so on and so forth. If you want to motivate your employees, all you have to do is use social proof. Create an achievements program and post the progress of each member of the organization. The employees will see how others are performing and want to do better. This type of social proof encourages a competitive work environment.
People have a tendency to follow leaders. If they see someone doing something, they will want to imitate the behavior. Social proof is a tool that can change things for the better. If you want, for instance, to change the dress code in the workplace, all you have to do is start wearing shorts and t-shirts. Basically, change what you wear first. This is based on the social learning theory in which people learn the things they observe in a hands-on way. And yes, social conformity is present in all aspects of life.
7. Empower Employees to Make Their Own Decisions
Chances are that you include employees in every decision you make. You’re aware that bringing them onboard only strengthens existing relationships and helps you gain their respect. Let the members of your team make their own decisions for once. They’re able to make decisions and carry out assigned tasks in the same way you would. The point is that you have nothing to worry about. The workers can manage on their own. If people happen to make mistakes, don’t be hard on them. Allow them to make mistakes and learn from them. If you do this, you’ll get more in return.
People who read this will automatically think this is the craziest thing in the world. Well, it’s not. You hired these people for a reason. They’re capable of doing their jobs, not to mention that they’re willing to go beyond and above for the sake of the organization. Believe in the power of employee empowerment. You’ve got nothing to lose if you give the staff members a little bit of freedom. On the contrary, you’ll have a lot to gain, as employees will expand their skill base and best serve the company. So, empower employees to empower yourself.
About the author
Diana Adjadj is a business writing coach that is set on a mission to make blogs stand out. She is the Chief Content Officer at 3to5marketing. Diana can be found online, tweeting about the writing process. Last but not least, she regularly contributes to websites like GrabMyEssay.com and WoWGrade.