How to Establish Company Culture (and Why It Matters)
From small, local businesses to multinational corporations, every company has some kind of culture, whether it’s been established or not. The makeup of that company culture either develops on its own without any direction or can be managed and cultivated thoughtfully with goals in mind. Learn how to establish company culture that benefits your business and its employees.
Build on your company’s existing mission statement by detailing in a cultural statement the relationships and behaviors expected. For example, your company’s mission statement might be, “Offering the best legal services since 1986.” To establish a cultural statement that takes your mission into mind, you could declare, “Offering the best legal services since 1986 using compassionate, expert, and logical work.” Compassionate, expert, and logical would be the core values you that would guide the direction of company culture efforts and programs.
Someone needs to be in charge of efforts to nurture company culture. Depending on the size of your business, this can be a single person or a committee of employees from multiple departments. From planning company-wide, team-building events to organizing employee recognition programs, your company’s culture guru spearheads initiatives to incorporate your cultural statement into the everyday operations of your business.
Managers and executives must lead by example if they want employees to embrace company culture. When business leaders actively demonstrate their company’s values, people follow suit. If you expect your staff to act with integrity, grace, and kindness, you must act that way yourself. It’s one thing to say there is a company culture at your business, but it’s quite another to actively manifest its core values in your daily routine.
While there won’t be numbers to analyze, provide benchmarks to measure the success of your company culture efforts. One of the best ways to determine the effect of company culture activities is by simply asking your employees. After an event, send around an anonymous poll to get feedback. Listening to your employees not only builds culture, but also helps you better understand how to shape company company culture programs and initiatives.
Recognize Culture Fanatics
Whether it’s monthly, quarterly, or yearly, take some time to regularly recognize those employees that personify the values of your company culture. Handing out certificates and awards for workers inspires and motivates others, while once again reaffirming the values of your company culture.
Consider what Zappos CEO, Jeff Hsieh once said, “Your brand is your culture.” Consider what your business offers customers when determining how to establish company culture for your organization.