As a business owner, you have a fire burning inside you that keeps you motivated to work hard every day. You believe wholeheartedly in your company and it’s values. But if you want these beliefs to be shared by your entire team they need to be instilled into your company’s culture. Here’s 10 ways to improve your company culture to help you get the team and the business that you want.
1. Encourage team connection
Wekelo says that when we get together we’re able to reduce stress, hence, a closer relationship is built. Closer relationships promote work satisfaction and teamwork. Plus, it’s a great way for leaders to show their support for a culture that gives priority to well-being. It is crucial to encourage team connection in order to create a happier, more productive work environment.
Work to cultivate strong coworker relationships. Employee engagement is driven by strong relationships at work, but this does not happen automatically. It takes time and effort to build up strong coworker relationships. MindTools shared some great tips for building relationships.
2. Remove hierarchies
It turns out, what was once the “open-door” policy has become the “no-door” policy, states Goel. When leaders are sat behind cubes or closed doors it’s easy to fall into the trap of “us” and “them”. Working within this kind of environment inhibits the free flow of ideas and creates an atmosphere of intimidation. Therefore, try as much as possible to get rid of all hierarchies.
It’s also important to maintain consistency in your workplace, as employees feel less anxiety when they know what they expect every day. Therefore, it is necessary to maintain a sense of management and consistency in your company’s structure. However, you shouldn’t be afraid of shaking things up from time to time.
3. Encourage short breaks throughout the day
Your worker’s health is more important than the services that they offer. It’s important for them to have frequent breaks during the day so that they may have a better mental and physical health. The human body wasn’t created to sit behind a screen for several hours without breaks. In fact, doing so can even lead to serious health issues. Regular breaks also help to keep your team refreshed, clear-headed and make them feel even better at their jobs.
It’s equally important to practice flexibility in your workplace. Nowadays many companies have come to realize the importance of providing their employees with added flexibility. It can reduce stress, reduce employee turnover and increase morale. In a recent survey, flexibility proved to be the greatest driver of retention. Flexibility is entirely personal; it can be a parent stepping out for a couple of hours to watch a school play or any employee taking a much-needed sabbatical.
4. Be a good role model
You wouldn’t take a life advice from a hypocrite, would you? So, try as much possible to keep your words and action in line. Always be clear and transparent with your team. In order for any boss to raise the top, the momentum to get him or her there strongly depends on their employee’s efforts. Create a company culture where the information shared is valued, discussed, and made use of. Try as much as possible to help people and add value to your team and make them feel like part of the tribe.
With this in mind, remember to practice work-life balance in your own life as well as your employee’s. Imagine a manager who promptly responds to emails while on a vacation. This could send your employees the wrong signals. It tells them that they should be doing so as well. Respect the privacy of your employees and stop contacting them after normal working hours unless it is an emergency.
One of the biggest complaints that most employees have at work is communication (or lack of it). What if I asked you, “How many times have you heard employees getting confused by a memo because they’re not really sure what it means?” Or, “How often do employees hear rumors about pay cuts or redundancies while the management remains quiet?” It’s probably a lot, right? Indeed, this must make your employees feel very uneasy. The messages you send to your employees should always be clear, as it can be dangerous if a manager and his or her employees do not communicate well.
Motivated employees have better job satisfaction, higher performance levels, and greater productivity. A good way to motivate people is through magnification. Magnification is the application of gaming aspects to non-gaming activities. (For example everyday work tasks.) Magnification, or gamification, is important since it builds employee’s knowledge and skills and helps teams to work together efficiently. Gamification has great benefits, using this, everyday things turn out to be more fun. A few little friendly competitions, even if it is in the office, are a great way to get your employees engaged and motivated.
7. Embrace success as a team
In business, you will only be able to tackle challenges as a team if you also celebrate your success as a team. Your employees will be empowered when you share responsibilities and recognition for the company’s accomplishments. Employees who are engaged in a high performing team are always 25% more productive. Any business that supports collaborations can greatly help to foster this positive culture.
You should also take the time to recognize and reward valuable contributions made by your team. Employee recognition is a big factor in their satisfaction with their boss and their workplace. Some of the key practices which drive the culture of reward and recognition include, creating a peer-to-peer recognition programme, focusing on rewards for achieving company goals and giving recognition frequently and openly.
8. Empower and trust
Sometimes as a business leader, you’re not able to know everything that goes on in the business. Goel advises leaders to trust and empower their team to make right decisions for them. The risk you take when you trust and empower your employees to take on some of the responsibility is far outweighed by the risk of mistakes that could be made if you didn’t.
Trust your employees, if you let them know that you trust them to do a good job for you they will rarely disappoint. A vote of confidence from you can go a long way to improving their confidence, work satisfaction, and your company culture.
10. Invest in your employees
Your people are your biggest asset. Therefore, why wouldn’t you want to invest in them? Most of the time we tend to actively work to hire the best, the most talented, and the brightest for our business. Once they’re on your team, remember to give these people an opportunity to progress and develop with continued encouragement and training.
10. Align the company’s culture with its values
The guiding principles by which people should operate is your company values. Therefore, you should always try to align your company values with the company’s culture.
Author Bio: Emma Conlan. Marketing Specialist – PinkSquare.
Emma is a copywriter and marketing professional from the UK, currently living and working in Copenhagen. Emma loves traveling, writing, shopping and (most of all) her dog.
PinkSquare is a company dedicated to improving the experience of purchasing 3D animations, especially for small and medium-sized companies. They make the process of buying 3D animations easy, fast and affordable.