Corporate culture and employee engagement go hand-in-hand, paving the path to profitability. The positive effects of a great corporate culture and the corresponding employee engagement can be measured in increasing productivity, reducing attrition, and improving customer satisfaction. Additionally, there may be other benefits that are harder to quantify: better communication, more efficient operations, and increased collaboration and innovation.
Building a strong corporate culture is not a momentary effort – rather it is an on-going journey that corporations work at continuously. Here are 12 tips for you to consider on your culture-building journey:
- Create with intentionality. Corporate culture does not just happen – you create it intentionally. So be sure you are creating the corporate culture that is going to serve best.
- Build recognition and reward into your culture. Instead of traditional top-down rewards and incentives, find ways to let employees recognize and reward each other. There are many apps that companies can implement – and being recognized by a co-worker is very meaningful and an important complement to recognition from superiors or executives.
- “Fun” should inspire creativity, teamwork, and innovation. Many companies seem to add “fun” activities as a way to compete for scarce talent. But implementing fun activities because they make your company more successful, as well as a better place to work, will more effectively attract talent. Make sure you are getting the right return on your investment in “fun.”
- Embrace transparency. Transparency impacts the entire organization and is, therefore, an important foundation for successful corporate culture. Why is transparency so important? Because transparency is an expression of trust between management and employees.
- Encourage communication and collaboration. Implement modern technology to help employees communicate seamlessly and collaborate flawlessly. Easy and efficient connections facilitate information sharing, breaking down barriers and encouraging teamwork.
- Encourage strong relationship between coworkers. Having at least one strong relationship with a co-worker has frequently been shown as a pre-cursor to employee engagement. These relationships don’t just happen – they take opportunity and time. Design your workspaces to encourage interactions between coworkers. Create opportunities to bring coworkers together in situations that build relationships.
- Embrace employee autonomy. Get rid of micromanagers and trust your employees to do their jobs. No one likes to be second-guessed, but everyone appreciates being recognized as being able to do their jobs without excessive oversight.
- Provide employee flexibility. Allowing employees some flexibility within the confines of meeting their job responsibilities can improve morale and reduce turnover. Whether this means allowing a parent a few hours to attend a school function, or letting employees schedule their breaks, it needs to be a part of your corporate culture.
- Live passion and purpose. Are your employees purpose-driven? Do they see your passion for the work? Employees can find purpose in any work; those that have purpose have a strong corporate culture.
- Go, Team! Do you think of the people you work with as your employees? Or as your team? It seems like a small thing, but building a team takes team-thinking. Shifting your thinking to team-thinking can make a big difference.
- Feedback is Golden. Strong corporate cultures solicit and give feedback on a regular schedule, and usually more often than once-a-year. Helpful, timely feedback benefits everyone and allows you to reward positive behavior closer to the time it takes place.
- Stay true to your core values. Many companies have a list of bullet points, but core values that drive corporate culture are your company’s guiding light and the heart of your organization. They don’t just sound good; they describe what is important and meaningful to your organization.
Strong corporate cultures don’t happen overnight. If you want to strengthen your corporate culture, be sure to give this effort the needed time and resources. The payback will be worth it.