Company culture is a tough thing to get right and yet, more often than not, a business does not put any work in to developing its own internal culture. For many of today’s modern job-seekers, they are not just looking for a job that pays the rent, they are looking for careers with progression. They are looking for something more than just a desk and a computer, they are looking for an identity linked to their role. In short, they want a company with personality.
If you wanted a simple definition of company culture, try summing up your company personality. In terms of an example, think of this; is the place where you work the type of place you could go to the boss with a new, slightly outlandish project idea? Or is it best to ‘keep quiet’ and not ‘rock the boat’?
In other words, how does the organization embrace something new? How does it adapt and thrive in a constantly fluctuating marketplace?
If all seems fabulous in your organization, then the culture is not broken – or is it? Why should you bother with the culture in your company is a question that can be best answered with another question.
Are they enthusiastic? If it always seems like the same old same old, and people squabble, fall out, and the office is full of politics, then the culture of your organization may need fixing.
However, fixing it to create a modern, vibrant, and successful culture within your organization is not easy. If it was, we would all be doing it and would all be successful, and every company across the world would be full of happy, enthused employees.
But this is not the case.
Thus, there are four factors (at least, possibly more) that you need to help make your company culture successful and vibrant.
This may sound odd, discriminatory almost, but taking your time and hiring people that fit with your company ethos will ensure that your internal company culture does not take a nose dive before you have even started.
However, when the pressure is on, the hiring process can lead to people being hired on a whim or in a rush. Hence, you need to ensure that your hiring process is rigorous. Some companies ask prospective employees to shadow a current employee for a day or two to see if they have the aptitude for the organization, as well as the skills for the job. One bad hiring decision can lead to you inadvertently introducing a toxic element into your company, so choose with care.
This is an obvious question and yet one which remains hidden in plain sight; in other words, it is not one that is often asked at interviews. When asking this at an interview, you want to see what potential employees know about the company.
It’s not just about rattling off a list of products and services or the names of the CEOs from the year 1917 to the present day. Whilst all these facts are useful for proving the candidate has done their research, they are not really delving into the values, mission and ethos of the company. This may mean that every employee – new and old – needs to be acutely aware of what the ethos of the company is. In other words, everyone must be singing from the same hymn sheet.
We have touched on this previously, by saying that good ideas, projects, and decisions do not always need to come from the management level of the organization. Sometimes, the best decisions and ideas can come from the people who see the picture far more clearly that the management ever can. In many successful organizations, the employees are not people who sit at their desks from 9 till 5 and do as they are told. The culture is vibrant and lively because the employees are encouraged to be vibrant and lively.
A team in your organization functions just like a team in a competitive sport – working together and harnessing each other’s strengths and weaknesses. In companies where culture is deemed ‘not so great’, the team is often a bunch of individuals that sit in the same room. They may not dislike each other, but are they really pulling together?
A good company culture is about people operating and dovetailing together, not standing alone and only asking for ‘help’ when they simply cannot manage the good fight on their own any more. A thriving company needs a good culture where people don’t feel that struggling or not coping are a weakness or a daily occurrence.
If you want to grow your business you need a good, vibrant culture at the heart of your business. What does your culture say about your company?