Culture is the character and personality of a business. It is what makes your business unique and comprises of traditions, values, beliefs, interactions, behaviours, attitude, and communication.
Positive workplace culture attracts talent, drives engagement, impacts happiness and satisfaction and effects performance. Leadership, management, workplace practices, policies and people, impact workplace culture significantly.
Most businesses let their workplace culture form naturally without defining what they want it to be which is a mistake. This involves creating policies that are based on other organisations – not what fits with theirs, hiring employees who “don’t fit”, tolerate management styles that threaten employee engagement and retention, and poor communication.
Some of the correct foundations to form a strong workplace culture should include:
- The way your leaders communicate and interact with employees.
- What they communicate and emphasise, their vision for the future.
- What they celebrate and recognise, what they expect, the stories they tell, how they make decisions.
- The beliefs and perceptions they reinforce.
- How your business is managed—its systems, procedures, structure, hierarchy, controls, and goals.
- The degree to which managers empower employees to make decisions, support and interact with them.
- Practices related to recruiting, onboarding, benefits, rewards and recognition, training and development, advancement/promotion, performance management, wellness, and work/life balance.
- The people you hire — their personalities, beliefs, values, diverse skills, experiences, and everyday behaviours
- The types of interactions that occur between employees (collaborative versus confrontational, supportive versus non-supportive, social versus task-oriented, etc.)
Objects and other physical signs in your workplace. These include what people place on their desks, what the organisation hangs on its walls, how it allocates space and offices, what those offices look like (colour, furniture, etc.), and how common areas are used
By implementing the above every business can take a first step towards generating the culture that they want to see in their workplace. Remember, each kind of work environment leads to a different culture, but this culture must be driven and monitored on a regular basis to make sure the company and its employees are headed in the same direction.