Culture is one of the most important aspects of your company. A strong culture will make new people want to work at your company and will help you retain current employees. Businesses that invest in and prioritize the culture tend to be more successful financially and have happier customers. To help build a culture first organization, follow these four pieces of advice.
Define your culture and commitment to maintaining it
The first step in building your company’s culture is intentionally defining and designing it. Determine the values, beliefs and behaviors that are central to your organization. Identify what tradeoffs you feel comfortable making to maintain your culture while pursuing growth, profitability and impact goals. If culture is the most important aspect of your organization, then you have to be willing to make sacrifices to maintain it.
Celebrate each person’s role in driving action and impact
Being apart of a company that has a larger purpose is a rewarding experience, but that doesn’t mean that employees still don’t want recognition for their part. Many companies forget to highlight the individual actions that result in achieving that larger purpose. Focus on reminding everyone how vital of a role they play in working toward that goal to create a culture centered on appreciation, accountability and amplification. Otherwise, you’re fostering a culture that takes the achievements of others for granted and encourages competition.
Recognize your own humanity and create conditions that honor others’ humanity
This is something that everyone in your organization should focus on, but it is an especially important quality for leaders. Being a leader means you have more responsibilities than others, and with additional responsibilities comes additional stress. With so many people depending on you, it may feel as though you can’t take any time for yourself or you’ll let others down. However, leaders need time to take care of their own health, so they’re better able to support their employees. A leader who neglects their health will become bitter and burnt out, which will lead to their employees feeling the same way. Encourage a culture that allows everyone to take the time they need to refresh.
Measure experiences at the individual, team and organizational level
There are more resources now than ever before that allow company leaders to understand what drives the engagement and performance of their employees. Conduct regular assessments and determine what is working and what isn’t. These will enable you to make the necessary changes in your organization before things reach a point where great employees are quitting because they’re so unhappy.