Office culture matters. It is an underlying factor in several key areas of an organisation, including productivity, decision-making, engagement and morale, and has the potential to make or break a business. As a result, the importance of creating and maintaining an effective company culture should not be underestimated.
‘What is company culture?’ — why it’s so important to ask the question
Understanding the concept and benefits of an effective company culture can have a significant impact on your business. Not only does this need to be recognised on a fundamental level as part of the business corporate branding, mission and values, but it should also be revisited regularly to make sure the course has stayed true.
Businesses can keep on top of their company culture by sending out regular employee feedback forms and surveys to gauge the general outlook and to gain insight on what should be improved. It’s also beneficial to have candid progress meetings with employees regularly, so they can give direct feedback on issues.
What does company culture mean?
The culture of your company is comprised of the values, attitudes and beliefs which are shared and perpetuated by all staff.
Your culture is a reflection of what it is like to work for your company— the atmosphere in the office, the manner in which team members communicate and how they approach collaborative situations. It can also encompass the company’s values and policies and actions.
This seems simple enough, so what does ‘company culture’ mean for your business and why should it matter so much?
The benefits of an ideal organizational culture
When you work towards creating and maintaining a good company culture, you’re ensuring that your business enjoys the following benefits:
- You attract top talent without even trying
When you have a model office culture, your employer branding is likely to become much stronger due to word of mouth from your current employees. Top talent is more likely to seek you out intentionally based on the glowing appraisals from brand ambassadors — your staff!
- You retain current talent more easily
Employees working within an ideal company culture are usually happier because they recognise that they are well matched with colleagues and with the goals and values of the business.
- Engagement and productivity are better
Our research shows that lost productivity, increased workloads and higher stress levels are a direct result of employers failing to hire candidates who were a good fit for company culture. Good office culture could significantly boost output and engagement and contribute toward a happier team overall.
4 ways to create an ideal company culture
1) Hire for cultural fit
Every new hire you bring into the business will affect your culture. You can make a strong start by including details of the company culture within job descriptions, so you attract the right employees. You can also use the job interview process to test for soft skills and temperament, as well as technical ability.
2) Onboard staff properly
Once you’ve hired for fit, you need to ensure that all new employees understand exactly what’s expected of them in terms of their role, their responsibilities and their conduct. A thorough onboarding process will help your new employees hit the ground running and will allow them to integrate with the team more quickly.
3) Lead by example
An ideal office culture doesn’t build itself — it comes from the top. You need to lead as an embodiment of your company culture and promote it in all circumstances. Research has shown that 66% of employees choose to leave a company due to poor leadership. Employees look to their superiors as an example, so perpetuating the right culture at a top level should be considered essential.
4) Reward and recognise hard work
One of the best ways to foster a culture of positivity is to recognise and reward hard work. Whether you choose to do this with a comprehensive remuneration package offering for all staff, through regular events or on an individual basis (or all of the above), employees are more likely to work harder and feel happier when they know their work is appreciated.
For more information on creating the ideal company culture or hiring the best talent for your office culture, get in touch with the Robert Half team today.