A strong company culture based on core values and principles shared between all employees is crucial to business success. Companies that put their teams first and foster a spirit of inclusiveness are rewarded with increased employee loyalty, employee satisfaction and low turnover rates.
People who are happy in the workplace are often willing to go the extra mile for the company and its clients. This, in its turn, translates into higher customer satisfaction rates and better productivity.
With all this in mind, many companies still fail to prioritize great organizational culture and make it a reality.
Here are seven easy and realistic steps you can take to improve your company culture and boost organizational citizenship.
1. Run team-building activities
In the corporate world we often have to work with people with different personalities, habits and values. When people are too different from each other, teamwork and collaboration might seem hard or even impossible. Yet there are many good ways to use this tension creatively and build a strong team where differences only add value.
Team-building games are one of those ways. There are many fun and creative team-building activities you can use to bring your team together and have fun. The collaborative nature of these activities teaches people to work together and contribute to common goals. If you want to connect remote teams, you can rely on virtual team building activities.
2. Embrace transparency
The internal sense of trust and transparency between management and employees is the foundation of a great company culture.
Employees want to know what drives the company, what long-term goals and challenges it has and how they can contribute to achieve those goals.
While it might seem hard for the management to let employees behind the curtain, transparency can help you improve employee satisfaction, build company reputation and benefit your bottom-line.
Here are several things you can do to foster a culture of trust and transparency with your employees.
- Give employees access to information. Encourage open communication in the workplace. Don’t avoid openly talking about the company’s growth strategies or performance issues.
- Open up transparency in finances. Share at least some nuances about the state of financial affairs, growth forecasts, profit and loss statements with your employees.
- Acknowledge and discuss mistakes. This is especially important when the mistake comes from the CEO or the management team. When managers acknowledge their mistakes, employees feel more comfortable to openly discuss their own.
- Create a transparent recruitment and employee promotion policy. Apply that policy to each job candidate and each team member seeking promotion.
3. Involve employees in decision-making
This is the logical continuation of fostering transparency in your company culture.
Involving your employees in decision-making is a great way to express your trust and let them feel like a valued part of the team. Besides, when you involve more minds, more solutions may be brought to light that were never thought of before. Employees often have great ideas but sometimes they feel uncomfortable expressing themselves during the meetings.
In order to make the decision-making process more transparent and democratic, you can use polling software with web and text voting features, such as Swift Polling by ExciteM. With Swift, you ask questions, create several options of possible solutions and ask your employees vote for the one they think is the most effective.
4. Celebrate success
Never miss the chance to raise a glass to your team’s achievements. Celebrating success breathes life into your company and gives employees an extra motivation to work even harder for better results. While it’s very easy to blame people for their errors, it takes time, effort and sense of appreciation to recognize achievements and throw your employees a party or organize a lunch at the office. But it pays back in terms of higher team morale and loyalty. Having a celebration ritual helps to keep the team spirit high during tougher times and increases employee satisfaction.
5. Run anonymous employee satisfaction surveys
Conducting employee satisfaction surveys is a great way to give employees a voice, see if they are happy in their job and what you can do to improve their working conditions. It allows you to get into the heart of what drives your team and understand the mood in the workplace.
If your employees aren’t satisfied it can have a negative effect across the whole company, including performance, customer satisfaction and consequently revenues. On the other hand, if people are happy with their jobs, it means they are naturally motivated to provide great customer service.
The best way to find out if your employees are satisfied with their jobs is to run anonymous online surveys with web polling software. The anonymity feature will allow them to express their opinions more freely and will let you unearth real insights about your team’s happiness.
6. Invest in employee development
As a company, your people are your biggest asset. In the race to hire the brightest and most promising talents in your industry, you shouldn’t forget to give those people the opportunity to develop. Providing a platform to encourage and support your employees’ professional development not only helps you build a team of skilled experts, but also boosts employee loyalty and performance at work.
According to a Gallup report 87 percent of millennials say development is important in a job. In fact, most of them look for work that fuels their sense of purpose and gives them development drive instead of other “fancy perks,” like free food or ping pong tables companies usually offer.
7. Promote from within the company
This point is directly linked to the previous one. It’s not always necessary to look outside your staff to find new hires. When you run effective employee training activities in your company, the talent you are looking for can be found and developed in your team. Many of them will be happy to take a new challenge and an opportunity to apply their skills in a new position. The perspective to grow their career gives people an incentive to work harder all the year round. High motivation in its turn results in higher job satisfaction and employee retention rates.
Building a great company culture and boosting organizational citizenship is one of the most rewarding tasks you can take. A great culture improves employee retention rates, enhances engagement and overall performance and shapes your company’s reputation to attract new talents. Try these seven simple steps and see what long-term impact they will have.