The Importance of a Positive Company Culture
More and more, business owners are beginning to understand just how essential it is to have a positive company culture if they want to attract and keep top talent. But how do you achieve a great company culture? Some articles would have you believe that purchasing cool, materialistic things for the office is the way to go. Who doesn’t want to work in a place where they can take a slide down to the first floor instead of an elevator? While that sounds like a load of fun and I am in no way discouraging you from building a slide in your office, it’s not enough to create a company culture that is truly positive and motivating to those who are part of it. If once employees get down the slide, they find themselves in an environment that doesn’t encourage productivity or make their work feel valued, what’s the point?
So how can we as business owners know if we’ve created a healthy, happy company culture and if not how we can turn it into one? The first thing you need to start doing is paying attention. Do employees stop talking when you walk in to a room? Is it difficult to get people to talk and express their views at company meetings? Red flag. These are signs of a lack of trust and ability to freely communicate. Keep your eyes and ears open for anything that may indicate something about your company culture. Everything from how willing employees are to be at work, to whether or not they eat lunch together, to how long it takes them to complete tasks can be very telling. You should also take time to read online reviews about your business. You may think that your company is portrayed as having a collaborative, transparent, and happy culture, but reviews may tell you otherwise.
I once heard that the culture you foster in the work environment is a direct result of what you as the owner choose to praise and what you choose to frown upon. This couldn’t be truer. It is obviously important to correct mistakes, but it’s equally important to praise someone for a job well done. Even more, it’s important to praise someone after they have corrected a mistake. As business owners, we need to encourage our employees to communicate, we need to celebrate collaboration, and we need to reward completing tasks quickly. If you don’t currently have a good company culture, take steps to begin replacing the bad with the good.
The most effective thing we can do for an amazing company culture is genuinely care. Employees should feel like their work and opinions are valued and like they’re making a difference. Take their feedback to heart. If they accomplish something – even something small – a high five can go a long way. Ask them how you can help them achieve their goals. Be transparent and honest about company affairs and yourself so that they are able to be transparent with you. As a result, you’ll find that productivity levels are higher than you’ve ever seen.
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About Artemio Flores III
Art Flores is the president of the Entrepreneurs' Organization - San Antonio. He is also the vice president and co-owner of Artcom Associates, Inc. The Entrepreneurs' Organization (EO) is a dynamic, global network of more than 9,500 business owners in 40 countries. Founded in 1987 by a group of young entrepreneurs, EO is the catalyst…