Building a Strong Workplace Culture
13 March 2020
In today’s workplace, company culture is a major factor in attracting and retaining employees, and a lot of companies are working hard to create an engaging work environment that stands out against the more traditional workplaces and appeals to newer generations.
What can you do that would make your work culture unique, but still stay true to who you are as a company? What is it that highly engaged workplaces have in common that is missing from your strategy?
1 Identify your mission and values
Your employees cannot embody your business’ values unless they know what they are and why they are relevant to their work. Review your mission statement and policies. Revise them if necessary. Upholding these values is everyone’s responsibility, whatever their position in your organisation.
2 Adopt a transparent management style
Employees want and expect a leadership style where information is shared freely. Trust inspires loyalty and engagement. Share both good and bad news, give everyone a chance to put forward their ideas and be accessible and responsive to your team.
3 Strive to increase and maintain diversity in the workplace
Many employers realise that diversity promotes innovation and increases profits. Consider how and where you recruit candidates and track retention across diverse groups. Use anonymous surveys to get honest feedback from across your organisation. Ask what you can do to make everyone feel welcome. Adopt a zero-tolerance policy to bullying and harassment.
4 Foster Positive Relationships
A highly engaged workplace fosters events and gatherings that help employees connect with their co-workers and build relationships. They create a fun, relaxed atmosphere where employees can step away from their desks and engage in a casual way. People with friends at work are 7x more likely to engage fully in their work.
5 Adapt to the expectations and needs of today’s employees
Competitive salaries and bonuses undoubtedly attract employees, but research shows that candidates increasingly seek out companies that offer flexible working hours, remote working, and a sensible work-life balance.
6 Give regular formal and informal feedback
Employees want to know whether they are performing their duties to an acceptable standard, and they appreciate timely feedback. Task ambiguity is a common cause of workplace stress. Annual reviews can be useful, but they are not sufficient. Give meaningful feedback at least once a month and more often if it benefits the employee.
7 Recognise and reward great performance
Workers who feel underappreciated are unlikely to stay loyal to their employer. Employee recognition doesn’t have to be expensive or time-consuming. A sincere “thank you,” a handwritten note or public recognition can all boost morale. Employee recognition is a low cost, high impact strategy which boosts engagement.
8 Give your employees opportunities to advance in their careers
Workers who feel they are stuck in their roles are likely to become disengaged and may look for opportunities elsewhere. Consider whether you are currently offering your employees meaningful chances to progress within your business. If their skills need an upgrade, invest in training programs that fit around their existing commitments. When ambitious employees know that they can reasonably expect a promotion or other benefits, they are more likely to feel engaged with their work.
9 Foster Employee Pride
It’s important for employees to know how their contributions help to accomplish the overall goal of the company. When an employee can see how they are contributing to the success of the company, they take more pride in their work. Use a system that visualizes and tracks goal alignment to increase employee engagement by helping employees see how their efforts and work fit into the company as a whole. Instead of feeling like a cog in the machine, employees can see exactly how their work brings value.
10 Review the working environment
If you’re looking to hire talented people, it doesn’t make sense to fill your office with cubicles and limit employee freedom. You’ll attract mediocre employees, and you’ll be a mediocre company. If, on the other hand, you have an open working environment with lots of transparency and employee freedom, you’ll attract talent. From the minute people walk in the office, they should know that this is a different place with a unique culture.
A company culture that facilitates employee happiness means lower turnover and better company performance. Employees are loyal and companies perform better. It’s a win-win.
If you want to discuss any of your recruiting needs please do contact me.