by Charlotte Gurney
Culture is at the heart of any business and influences everything, from productivity and innovation to internal relationships. Different cultures perpetuate different results - some can cause your enterprise to thrive while others will stifle growth. If you’re keen to improve the culture within your business to drive better results there are some simple ways to do it.
● Strengthen relationships between leadership and employees. Leaders play a key role in defining business culture and where relationships are weak with employees this can lead to a disconnected and disengaged workforce. Leaders who are active mentors have a big positive impact - 76% of employees feel like they are part of a larger purpose where there is a leader actively mentoring - and building relationships on an individual level is also highly beneficial.
● Avoid micromanaging. Teams, and individuals, require a certain level of autonomy to thrive. Creating a positive culture means striking the right balance between autonomy and ensuring that people feel supported and safe.
● Employees need to be connected to the organization’s ‘why.’ This is the reason for being and why the business exists at all. You might have clearly laid out the values, mission and strategy of your organization, all of which are essential as the ‘what’ and the ‘how’ of what the business does. However, it’s the ‘why’ that will motivate your staff to go on and deliver results.
● Take the time to understand the experience your employees have. It’s employee experience that defines business culture so it’s vital to understand how this plays out at your organization. Employee experience is essentially all the interactions that an employee has with the business, from the tone of emails to how comfortable and well-equipped workstations are. Some of the simplest ways to improve employee experience include providing staff with a forum for feedback and voicing concerns, implementing regular team events and meets and ensuring that leadership sets the tone when it comes to enthusiasm, openness and respect.
● Regular recognition is essential to positive workplace culture. Recognition is the act of showing appreciation for employees, which is at the heart of employee engagement. 78% of employees say that they feel highly engaged when they also feel recognized - and its engagement that drives key positive outcomes, such as increased productivity. There are many different methods to introduce more recognition into the way your business operates to help improve workplace culture. That could be something as simple as a public thank you, extra days off around special occasions, wellness programs or providing team treats.
● Transparency and communication are key. During the earlier months of the pandemic, organizations that were transparent saw 85% more staff engagement. People respond to honesty and to open communication - and this creates a culture that is more authentic, connected and ideas-driven. One simple way to open up a more communicative culture is to schedule regular one-to-ones between leaders and employees and allow both to speak openly. This can improve morale, make employees feel heard and drive engagement and productivity too.
Investing in building a stronger, more positive workplace culture will have a big impact when it comes to business results.