Company Culture Building For Your Small Business
Company culture refers to the shared values, beliefs, attitudes, behaviors, and practices that shape the social and psychological environment of an organization. It is the personality of a company, representing the collective character of the people who work there and the way things are done. Company culture can impact employee engagement, productivity, and retention, as well as the organization's reputation and brand identity.
Company Culture: Are You Ignoring It?
Small businesses may ignore company culture for several reasons. First, they may not fully understand what company culture is or how it impacts their business. They may view it as something only larger companies need to worry about, or they may believe that as long as they provide a good product or service, culture doesn't matter.
Second, small business owners may be so focused on day-to-day operations and survival that they don't have the time or resources to invest in developing and maintaining a strong company culture. This can lead to a lack of communication, transparency, and collaboration among employees, which can negatively impact the business in the long run.
Third, small business owners may be hesitant to address cultural issues because they are afraid of conflict or don't want to rock the boat. However, ignoring cultural problems can lead to low morale, high turnover rates, and a negative reputation in the community, which can all hurt the business in the long run.
Overall, small businesses may ignore company culture because they don't fully understand its importance, don't have the resources to invest in it, or are afraid to address cultural issues. However, developing and maintaining a strong company culture can lead to increased employee engagement, productivity, and retention, as well as a positive reputation in the community.
How Do I Establish A Good Company Culture?
Getting started in establishing a positive company culture is usually the hardest part. That's because you have to look inside yourself and inside your business. Start by identifying the core values that you and your business stands for. What is your "why"? Why did you start this business? What does it mean to you? What does it mean for your family, friends, community, and employees? These values should guide your decisions, behaviors, and interactions with employees, customers, and stakeholders. Write them down, communicate them to your team, and post them publicly for everyone to see.
As the leader of your business, you need to model the behaviors and attitudes that you want to see in your employees. You can't expect your team to embrace a positive company culture if you don't live and breathe it yourself. Lead by example and make sure that all of your actions and decisions are inline with the company culture.
When hiring new employees, look for people who share your company values and can contribute positively to your culture. Skills and experience are important, but attitude and fit are even more critical. Don't hire someone out of desperation. Hire them because they are a great fit with your company culture. Teaching skills is easy. Teaching attitude and mindset is extremely difficult.
When you've hired a good team, now you have to foster a positive work environment and good employee relations. Create a work environment that is welcoming, inclusive, and supportive. Encourage collaboration, teamwork, and mutual respect. Show appreciation for your employees' hard work and achievements. Celebrate successes and recognize outstanding performance with rewards or other incentives. And the most important part of a positive work environment is to eliminate any toxic employees immediately. A single toxic employee, especially a manager, can destroy the morale and culture of a company quicker than just about anything. Even if they are the best salesperson or the one that always comes in for overtime shifts, they need to go ASAP.
Finally, you need to communicate with your team and your customers regularly. Regular communication with your team is important to build trust and ensure everyone is on the same page. Encourage open dialogue and provide opportunities for feedback.
The Benefits of Having A Good Work Environment
Having a good company culture can bring a wide range of benefits to a business, including:
- Attracting and retaining top talent: A positive company culture can help attract and retain the best employees, as they are more likely to want to work for a company that values and invests in its employees.
- Increased employee satisfaction: A good company culture can make employees feel valued and appreciated, which can lead to increased job satisfaction and higher levels of motivation.
- Improved productivity: When employees are happy and motivated, they are more likely to be productive and perform at a higher level.
- Better teamwork and collaboration: A positive company culture can promote teamwork and collaboration among employees, which can lead to better results and a more cohesive work environment.
- Enhanced customer experience: Employees who are happy and engaged are more likely to provide excellent customer service, which can lead to increased customer loyalty and positive word-of-mouth marketing.
- Increased profitability: A positive company culture can lead to increased employee productivity and engagement, which can ultimately lead to increased profitability for the business.
Overall, establishing and maintaining a positive company culture is a worthwhile investment for any small business, as it can lead to a range of benefits that can help drive success and growth over the long term. Establishing this work environment takes time and effort, but the benefits are worth it. By prioritizing culture, you can create a workplace that attracts and retains talented employees, promotes innovation and creativity, and ultimately drives business success.
If you would like to get started developing a positive company culture or need to fix a toxic culture, we'd love to help. Get in touch with us and we can help you evaluate how and where changes are needed to build your small business with a great company culture.