A strong, cohesive culture is essential for any business. After all, your company’s culture determines how your employees interact with each other and your customers. If you want your business to succeed, you must ensure that you have a strong, positive culture in place. Leadership plays a significant role in shaping company culture, but every employee also contributes to it. While the topic of creating a strong culture would consume far more time than we have here, these three summarized steps can help you get started on the journey to creating an intentional company culture in your organization.
Define, Design, and Deliver Your Values
Before discussing building a cohesive culture, you must first decide what type of culture you want, what is required to get there, and how you’ll make it happen. What does your company stand for? What are the things that are most important to you? Once you have answered these questions, you must ensure that your values are reflected in all your policies, best practices, and procedures. Your values should be evident in every goal you set, every initiative you undertake, and the processes you implement. These logistical steps create the foundation for delivering your culture.
Hire the Right People
The second step is to ensure you are hiring the right people. It is not enough to hire people with the skills and experience necessary to do the job; you also need to ensure that they fit in with your company’s culture. Leadership needs to make cultural alignment a top priority for its recruiting strategy; companies must make both technical qualifications and culture-fit prerequisites for new hires. The best way to do this is to use an objective culture-focused tool like the Workzinga Culture Fit Assessment during the interviewing process. Getting it right in the talent acquisition phase is critical to building a culturally cohesive workforce.
Culture Lives and Breaths in Your Relationships
Now that you’ve created a comprehensive culture strategy and are hiring the right people, it’s time to vault your organization into one of those top workplaces we all hear about. Culture is all about relationships. Whether it is a relationship between coworkers, between a supervisor and an employee, between sales and a customer, or even between the company and a vendor, culture is a living and breathing part of every relationship in your organization. You must be vigilant that every encounter is governed by and demonstrates clearly your culture and values. Do not assume that your list of Core Values or your Mission Statement is enough to reinforce the culture you want to see. You must be mindful and aware of what is happening throughout your organization. What level of engagement does your workforce have, are your leaders exhibiting your values with their teams, do your processes bolster your desired culture, are your key measures and goals all supportive of your culture? Ambivalence and apathy are the enemies of strong culture – you must stay engaged and aware of what’s going on throughout your organization.
The value of a coordinated and intentionally-designed culture in your business can be evident in how well the organization thrives and how the individuals within the organization thrive. A strong culture can also be a key differentiator in both recruiting and retaining high-quality talent. Following these steps will put you well on your way to developing a robust and cohesive culture at your business.