Company culture is one of the most important (and most nebulous) topics keeping leaders up at night.
Whenever people spend enough time together, a culture develops. The business world is no exception. In small companies and in startups, the founder or CEO tends to set the culture. In larger companies, culture is driven by far more complex factors.
Whatever the drivers, culture influences the values the people share along with their interactions. The relative strength or weakness of the culture greatly effects the success, or failure, of a company.
We all know company culture is important, right?
Maybe not, since so many organizations have lousy company culture. So let’s start there.
Why Company Culture is So Important
There are almost endless research studies on why company culture is so important (here are two), but the infographic below shares some highlights from the research:
1. TEAMWORK: When employees understand how they all fit into the greater scheme, they will work together more effectively.
2. MORALE: A strong corporate culture gives everyone a better sense that what they do matters, leading to higher job satisfaction.
3. STAFFING: When employers know what they want their cultures to be, they can hire people who exemplify those qualities.
4. RETENTION: People who are a good fit with a company’s values and feel more satisfied tend to stay in their jobs longer, reducing turnover.
5. PRODUCTIVITY: Stronger cultures inspire employees to commit themselves to their work more fully, increasing their productivity.
6. BRANDING: When a company has a firm understanding of its values, it can communicate those values to its customers and build relationships.
How Technology Can Help
Now that we understand that creating a better company culture is incredibly important, how can we do it?
1. CREATE CHANNELS FOR FEEDBACK: Communication is one of the cornerstones of a strong culture. Through web portals, you can build a system for employees to leave feedback about their experiences.
2. ENABLE COLLABORATION: Getting people to work together is one of the best ways to enhance a workplace atmosphere. Many software platforms exist to help facilitate a collaborative environment, even across multiple offices. Givitas is one that allows for people to exchange help, one of the kinds of collaboration that encourages the strongest connections and relationships.
3. HIRE A WORKPLACE CONSULTANT: Sometimes an outside perspective can help identify areas in need of improvement. An expert may be able to suggest ideas for strengthening the bonds between your staff.
4. BUILD TRANSPARENCY: When everyone knows what is going on all the time, it becomes easier to create a culture. Communication tools such as teleconferencing and automated emails make it simple for management to get the word out quickly and effectively.
Technology can help identify and improve cultural issues. This handy infographic summarizes.