July 7, 2011
Your organization is made up of people, people who directly contribute to your bottom line. Doesn’t it make sense to have a corporate culture that highlights the people you work with?
Corporate culture is the underlying soul and guiding force within an organization that maintains the highest levels of team member satisfaction, customer loyalty and profitability. It may not seem obvious, but creating a “winning” corporate culture can be the differentiator between a company that drives growth and a company that merely exists.
If you feel your organization’s corporate culture may need rejuvenating, consider trying these steps:
1. Focus on the bigger picture. Where are you headed? What are your organization’s core values? Define and communicate your vision to all employees, giving them the opportunity to find ownership within your goals. If your team members grasp your focus, they can make decisions for their departments with your big picture in mind.
2. Don’t just lead others, empower them. You hired your team for a reason. Provide them with the proper tools and access to the right information to do their job and do it well. You’ll never know someone’s potential if they aren’t given the opportunity to try.
3. Support Mistakes. It’s one thing to encourage your employees to take risks; it’s another thing to give them your full support when they fail. No one is going to take a chance or try something new if it means potentially getting fired. Sometimes, a “mistake” is just another way of doing things.
4. Reward Others. Highlight innovation within your team. A simple verbal recognition in a team or company meeting can go a long way. I know your team members are important, you know they’re important, why not let them know they’re important. Does your organization have employee recognition awards? Simple awards can be a great way to acknowledge a job well done.
5. Promote From Within. Establish a company culture that nurtures talent and promotes high-performing team members on the basis of merit. Seeing a career path within your company can increase the effort and productivity your team members put into their roles and action items. If you take the steps to invest in their career, they most likely will return the favor.
6. Encourage Collaboration. Push your chairs together, take down your cubicle dividers, invest in some new tables, hold off-site meetings - anything to get your teams talking. Email conversations and shared documents are great tools, but can be limited in supporting effective collaboration.
A poor corporate culture fosters poor employee morale, which leads to poor profits. Nobody wants that. I’ll leave you with these good words from Stephen Covey, author of “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People”:
“An empowered organization is one in which individuals have the knowledge, skill, desire, and opportunity to personally succeed in a way that leads to collective organizational success.”
Kellee Montgomery serves as the Marketing and Social Media Lead for Billhighway, leading the financial technology platform’s traditional, emerging media and social media marketing strategy and execution. She is responsible for creating effective marketing and branding campaigns utilizing traditional and emerging digital concepts. Montgomery can be reached at [email protected]. Billhighway is 2010 winner of Metro Detroit’s 101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For.