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Company culture. It has become a huge buzzword in the business and entrepreneurial spaces lately. You’ve most likely seen it when reading any kind of management article. And you may have even seen the often cited Gallup survey that showed that 70% of American workers are disengaged on the job. But what exactly is it?
Every company culture is going to be unique, but universally, it’s about how you put the employees first in a way that creates a fun and productive working environment. Going to work shouldn’t be something that your employees dread every day. Ideally, they would actually have a hard time leaving because they truly enjoy the challenges, their co-workers, and the atmosphere.
That is why company culture matters and why you see so many people talking about it.
Still not sure how to create the type of company culture that embodies your business identity? Well we’ve gathered a dozen different ways some of the top experts in various fields go about creating a world-class company culture. So whether your company is staffed with 10 or 1,000 people, here is how to make your company somewhere everyone wants to work.
Josh Felber, Best-Selling Author and Business Success Coach:
“Success is a product of determination and teamwork, and being too stern can cause employees to resent their work. Many companies nowadays encourage short naps and breaks between work for the employee to get their focus back and shake away any lethargy that might be plaguing them. This conveys to the employees that the company cares about their well-being.”
John Tabis, Founder and CEO of The Bouqs Company:
“We need to start treating people like human beings, not like cogs in a productivity machine. Look at the individual first and their role second and relate to employees on a more human level.”
Anne Morriss, Best-Selling Author and Founder of GenePeeks:
“Culture guides discretionary behavior and it picks up where the employee handbook leaves off. Culture tells us how to respond to an unprecedented service request. It tells us whether to risk telling our bosses about our new ideas, and whether to surface or hide problems. Employees make hundreds of decisions on their own every day, and culture is our guide. Culture tells us what to do when the CEO isn’t in the room, which is of course most of the time.”
Bob Rosner, Best-Selling Author & CNBC Contributor:
“Many bosses like to keep their best talent hidden, lest another manager may try to poach them. The problem with that strategy: Most top performers don’t want to be kept chained to their desks — they want new challenges and opportunities. Start by giving your people credit in executive staff meetings. Even better, let them represent you at an upcoming meeting.”
Monica Zent, Founder of Foxworthy and ZentLaw:
“Round out your corporate culture by hiring people who offer different experiences than yours. As tempting as it may be, avoid hiring a “mini-me.” Identify your strengths and weaknesses, then fill in the gaps.”
Ari Weinzweig, CEO and Co-Founder of Zingermans:
“Culture is very little about what we say, and very much about what we do. If we don’t live it, it’s never going to play out as we want. Organizational culture is built slowly over time, not with a quick decision or the writing of a big check.”
Nikki Blacksmith, Industrial and Organizational Psychologist:
“Describe what each employee is supposed to accomplish, not how he or she is supposed to accomplish it. Don’t explain expectations as a process or set of steps; explain them in terms of the outcomes the employee needs to achieve to reach organizational goals.”
Anthony Tjan, NY Times Best-Selling Author and Founder of Cue Ball:
“Great cultures need a common language that allows people to actually understand each other: first, a common set of values, which are the evergreen principles of the firm, and second, a common set of standards by which a business will measure how they’re upholding those principles.”
Mackensie K. Graham, Freelance Journalist:
“Invest in research and development of your employees. What challenges are common in the area you live in? If a majority of employees have young children, what can be done to relieve some of the stressors of parenting? What does health and wellness look like to your employees? Developing ways to remove barriers and ease burdens of day-to-day life will allow your employees to focus more of their time, attention and skills to work.”
Rita Linjuan Men, Ph.D. and Assistant Professor of Public Relations at the University of Florida:
“Be the kind of person whom you want the employees to be, align your words and actions, corporate strategies, policies, and business objectives with corporate culture and values.”
Aj Thomas, Founder of InfuseProgram:
“Find ways to measure how transparency and trust flows within your organization. Whether it’s through your employee survey or through leadership interactions. Keeping your pulse on this thread will help leaders be more connected to the culture, and the people more connected to the organizations’ own values and goals.”
Jonathan Long, Founder of Market Domination Media:
“A strong work culture requires that everyone gels together. After-work dinners or activities are a great way to help build the strength of your team. An activity like bowling is great because it’s competitive—create a team of competitors that want to win and work well together and you will be unstoppable.”
Have any other ideas of what are important for an amazing company culture? Let us know in the comments!