Today, culture is so enmeshed with a company brand that it’s hard to discuss one without the other. It is what you stand for as a company leader and an organization as a whole. Beyond benefits and vacation time, company culture is an environment of support, transparency, and enthusiasm. And it cascades from the top. It’s a huge part of your role to set the tone for how employees feel, how they treat each other, and how they perform.
Why does it matter?
We spend one-third of our lives at work. Let that sink in a second. That alone should be an incentive to create a healthy workplace culture at your company. But fostering an attractive culture isn’t just good for employee morale; it can have dramatic effects on your company’s bottom line. Your company’s culture, then, is one of the most important elements in your long-term success.
Happy employees are productive employees
Employees that feel valued have higher levels of performance. Value stems from feeling heard, being empowered to make decisions, and receiving regular feedback on their performance. Open communication also leads to increased participation, engagement, and enthusiasm from employees. This prevents boredom and stagnation, and encourages creativity. Employees with a high sense of value approach new challenges with energy and positivity. They’re more likely to think outside the box and focus on innovation.
Happy employees also take less sick days. Lower absenteeism means higher production. This, of course, is all good for your bottom line.
Job retention is high
A strong company culture increases company loyalty and keeps employees around for longer. This is incredibly important in a time when the average tenure for today’s largest work generation is just two years. Employees are significantly less likely to look for new employment when they feel supported and motivated. This includes providing paths for upward mobility, mentorship opportunities, and continuing training and education.
This ultimately saves significant resources by lowering turnover. You will save time and money on recruiting, training, and acclimating new employees. High retention is a positive feedback loop. Employees are more likely to jump ship when they see their office neighbors regularly doing the same. And they’re more likely to stick around when they show up for work every day with a group of people who are happy to do the same.
You will attract top talent
You can’t fake good workplace culture. The working world is more transparent than ever. Platforms like Glassdoor make it possible for employees to leave honest feedback about the workplace and company culture for anyone to read. Job applicants are entering interviews armed with information they read online, and companies had better be prepared to answer for it. This new level of transparency is shifting the power dynamics at many large corporations by empowering employees of every level to express honest feedback about whether or not they feel appreciated, encouraged to maintain a healthy work-life balance, fairly compensated, and a part of a supportive team.
Your workplace culture will attract or repel top talent before they even walk in the door for an interview. A well-established, attractive company culture will naturally attract talented applicants who will bring with them fresh new ideas and innovative techniques.
How do you do it?
So how can you foster a healthy, happy work culture at your company? It turns out the youngest generation of workers currently in the workforce are the ones re-defining what an ideal company culture looks like. We’ve put together some simple ways to improve your workplace culture in five steps.