People are an organization's most important asset. A company's employees and the relationships among them drive productivity, collaboration and profit. A positive company culture correlates with successful recruitment, effective job matching, and employee collaboration and retention. Thus, improving company culture is an essential task for modern HR management.
Why Does Company Culture Matter?
Company culture involves the ways that all of the people who make up an organization relate to each other, at every level and across departments and functions. But it also involves a company's mission and values: How are core beliefs reflected in the company's internal and external operations and the company as a whole?
Employees who believe in the companies they work for and who feel valued and supported are more likely to be engaged and invested in their work. The improved productivity, collaboration and innovation can help maximize performance and profits.
Company culture and corporate responsibility are also at the forefront of many prospective employees' considerations in a job search. A 2016 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends survey found that corporate culture is a potential advantage in people management. For example, a recruiter may find the perfect candidate for a position. But if the company does not align with the candidate's values, that person may very well turn down the job.
According to a 2019 Glassdoor Mission and Culture Survey:
- 77% of respondents would consider a company's culture prior to applying for a job.
- 79% would consider a company's mission and purpose before applying.
- 56% rate company culture higher than salary when it comes to job satisfaction.
Here are six ways HR leadership can improve company culture:
- Demonstrate Flexibility
Being flexible with workers and respecting their lives and needs outside of work helps create a culture where employees feel valued and supported. Examples include scheduling flexibility that enables an employee to volunteer on a workday or attend their child's event at school. Organizations that support individual needs while keeping working conditions equitable for all staff tend to foster loyalty.
- Embrace Hybrid Workspaces
Open offices may well serve extroverted employees, fostering a culture of collaboration and positive relationships. Yet private workspaces may work best for people who benefit from solitude and minimal stimulation to focus. A hybrid workplace design that offers a combination of office environments as well as remote work options can help address the needs of a diverse range of employees.
- Keep People Connected
A strong company culture depends on building positive connections among people. Managers can check in regularly with employees to give and receive feedback. Teams can have daily meetups to stay on the same page and collaborate.
A company might have weekly meetings of its entire workforce, from entry-level employees to presidents and CEOs, giving everyone an opportunity to have input. The goal is to help employees feel more invested in the company's success.
- Encourage Communication
Keeping people, especially remote workers, connected and engaged relies on effective communication. Internal systems such as Slack and video-conferencing platforms like Zoom allow management to foster effective communication and teamwork at any scale, across any distance.
- Highlight Employee Successes
Leaders should highlight positive employee performance and accomplishments, whether individually or company-wide. Valuing and celebrating employees' achievements is an important aspect of building a success-driven company culture.
- Articulate Your Company Culture and Values
Those who define the company culture should do so clearly and transparently, incorporating input from stakeholders and employees alike. The culture should inform the company's mission, vision, treatment of employees, business model and so on.
Developing a healthy company culture is integral to HR management. It may be the key to successful recruitment, performance management, conflict resolution, retention and profitability.
Studying the interrelationships that make up an organization can help HR leaders foster the positive culture needed to succeed in today's socially conscious, worker-focused business environment.
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