The culture in a company is a set of shared beliefs, practices, and values within an organization. Companies have many legitimized written and unwritten rules developed over a long time. These influence the way employees relate to each other and their leaders. The company culture is so vital to the way employees go about their daily jobs in the workplace.
What is a Great Company Culture?
A great culture in a company is a people-centered culture of openness, mutual respect, and trust within a company. There are no hidden agendas. So employees can explore, share ideas, and work together in a non-competitive environment. The excellent culture allows every employee to feel free to talk and enjoy life at the company.
Why Company Culture is Important?
Employees want better salaries, but they also need happiness. They value things like the right working conditions, wellbeing, great team collaboration and to develop their competencies. It is leaders that are responsible for influencing the culture within a company.
When leaders invest their time and effort to provide what makes people happy at work, it is an example of a great company culture.
Here is How to Change the Culture in the Workplace
1. Put Employees First
Write a mission statement and make it live, to remind everyone that your goals are to serve employees first and the company second. Stick to it and achieve the first goal.
If employees feel they are valuable to the company, they will work harder and smarter for you to achieve the second goal. So, take care of your employees first, and they will look after you and the business.
2. Discover Employee Needs
If you don’t already know what your employees want, find out. Instead of making up your assumptions and trying to force things upon them, ask what they want. If you reach out to them, they will share with you their needs.
Discover what the employees value and what they want to learn from you. When you know their interests, it is easy to do things that can add value to them. Let them feel that the time they spend working with you will translate into real career growth soon.
3. Let Them Talk
You need to meet your employees every day and give them the freedom to talk about anything. And let them talk about things you need to hear, not what you want to hear.
People who work in companies with the freedom to talk culture tend to be more confident and competent. They can say anything not because they have the freedom to speak up but to add value to their work.
4. Remove the Insecurity
Do you know your staff feels intimidated whenever they meet you in the corridor, or when they walk into your office? Well, it is happening, and you should stop it. Deflect the attention away from yourself. And let every member of your staff feel safe in your environment.
Employees’ safety hinges on mutual respect, trust, and building a positive company culture. Your staff’s strength comes from the confidence they gain from you. And their security comes from the knowledge that you care for their wellbeing.
5. Check Own Behavior
Be aware of the impact your behavior has on the way people feel about the culture in the workplace and their job. The employees must see what it takes to be a good leader.
So do not fake a remarkable company culture or try to show false politeness. Employees want you to show and tell as it is, they do not need your spin.
6. Be People-Centric
Create a diverse company culture that encourages all employees to take more responsibility than the leader. People-centric leaders develop passionate employees who are desperate to volunteer when needed.
The only problem people-centered leaders face is to pick who can work the extra hours because the choices are many. When employees feel that their work is meaningful, they try to do something extra for free.
7. Engage with Employees
Employee engagement is a vital part of a positive culture in the workplace. Many employees want to feel unique and to do more than what their job descriptions say.
Your employees desire an identity that they can feel proud of. So engage them and provide support so that they can define their own identity. Do not try to set it yourself, provide support and let them do it.
8. Help Employees Share
Every employee in your company has some useful information, knowledge, and concerns they can share. Unfortunately, many leaders do not know how to get employees to share their knowledge.
Install writing boards in different places and encourage all employees to share information and knowledge. When employees share their information and knowledge, it strengthens relationships. It also improves their competences, teamwork, and working culture.
9. Allow Reciprocal Feedback
The best way to give employee feedback is for you seeking it first. By doing so, it opens up a two-way conversation, turns into an opportunity to coach and learn.
Receiving and giving feedback is not about describing incidents, criticizing, condemning, or giving fake praises. It is about both sides learning and moving forward.
10. Create Employee Advocacy
Happy employees are more likely to share new information, answer questions, and boost morale. They can say positive things in public about their workplace and the general company culture, including talking about products and services whenever opportunities present themselves.
Their voices are louder and resonate more than a company’s marketing tools. Beside, engaged employees can tell the public that their company is good to work for. And outsiders will take their word to be authentic proof of the company’s culture.
11. Stop Damaging Awards
Giving a reward like “Employee of the Month” to an individual is good if it is justifiable – but it is not always the case. There is only a certain amount an individual can do alone in that period.
It is through shared goals and team effort that can yield better sustainable results. So, do not create damaging competitions through individual incentives.
Competition can stop people from working together or sharing knowledge. Thus, avoid labeling individuals “Employee of the Month” or the winners versus losers. Make sure you reward a team for collective effort rather than for individual glory.
In conclusion, it takes a lot of hard work developing culture in a company. But it doesn’t take long to destroy great company culture. The workplace culture evolves as people change and new work practices emerge. It means attitudes and relationships are vulnerable to the changes. So, leaders need to keep reinforcing all the pillars of a healthy culture in a company.
How do you change the culture in a company? Please let us know your thoughts in the comments box below.