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Company Culture:
The vibe in your workplace

It’s hard to grasp, yet it’s everything: the company culture in your organization. A great corporate culture can be the driving force behind success. What is the secret? Perhaps autonomy, respect, less hierarchy. There’s no secret sauce. Or at least, it’ll be different for every organization. Sometimes even for each team. 

Learn more about the three cornerstones of company culture.

01.
Company productivity
Happiness at work is an incredible productivity driver. When employees feel content and valued, their motivation and engagement levels soar. This translates directly into increased productivity.
Read more
02.
Transparency at work
Transparency is the key to building trust in your company. Unfortunately, many organizations tend to keep crucial information under wraps, creating an environment of suspicion and making employees feel undervalued.
Read more
03.
Remote work
The traditional office landscape is evolving, and for good reason. The days of everyone clocking in at the same location are shifting towards a more flexible, remote setup. This is where trust comes in.
Read more

What is company culture?

‘Company culture’ is not easy to define. It’s the vibe in your workplace: how things happen, formal and informal. It's the mix of systems, behaviors, and values that shape the experience for employees and customers. Essentially, it's how things get done. We’ve seen it described as: ‘company culture is the personality of your organization’.

Company culture is not just rules or traditions. It's the shared norms, attitudes, and practices that make a company (or sometimes a team) unique.

Invisible but yet so important

Think of it as the invisible glue that binds your team and sets the stage for daily stories that build your company's identity. It sets invisible rules and expectations on how people behave and interact with each other, in teams. The importance of company culture is huge: 67% of executives prioritize it over their organization’s strategy or operating models.

In real terms, employees connect with company culture through missions and values, recognition, celebrations, and how the company handles performance. So, company culture guides employees' daily actions, creating a cohesive environment where decisions follow a shared vision. 

Want to learn about some of the companies known for their culture?

Buurtzorg is a health care organization with 15.000 employees and 0 managers. None. Employee retention is much higher than average, as is overall happiness. You can learn from that! No need to reinvent the wheel. 

Learn from Buurtzorg & other pioneers

Why is company culture important?

Because engagement keeps people happy. It keeps them with the team. With the company. It makes everyone perform best. It keeps innovation going.

All things that any company needs. But also things every employee needs, on a human level.

Before the great resignation (when people went looking for better career opportunities and more purpose), only 1 in 5 employees said they were engaged at work (Gallup). Needless to say, a company wants better results than that. A better company culture makes a difference (ok, bit of a chicken and egg, but let’s just leave it at ‘they go hand in hand’ for now).

We could argue that team culture is more important than company culture (which in turn trumps organizational structure). It’s definitely a good place to start.

Setting a good company culture

So, you want a great company culture. But that is easier said than done. If you look at company culture as the personality of the organization, how would you go about making it a great one? Is that even possible?

To know the status quo of your company culture, it’s best to go to the heart of it: the team members. Do a survey. Anonymously, if that works best.

After that, it’s time to roll up your sleeves. Even if the overall opinion on company culture is positive, there’ll be room for improvement. Like there’s always room for growth.

How? Well, less hierarchy would help. Or get rid of it altogether, even. 

Sign up for our courses

Our courses on company culture

You can take a course on how to handle conflict better in the workspace. Teams are made of individuals, with different backgrounds and ideas. Conflict can easily arise, especially when the stakes are high. Conflicts are not productive, but the solution can be! The course gives you the tools to deal with this quickly, respectfully and steadfastly.

Understand the intricacies of transformation, gaining insights into practical strategies for reshaping your organization into a dynamic and innovative entity. The course on how to transform your organization.

Or, follow our course on how to deliver feedback effectively, a skill vital in fostering a constructive and growth-oriented corporate culture. Feedback serves as a guide for continuous development, offering valuable insights into performance and encouraging individuals to adapt and refine their approach. When done right, feedback is a cornerstone for personal and professional advancement, creating a positive, adaptable, and high-performing work environment. But how do you ‘do it right’? The courses gives you that information - and more.

Psychological safety is another hot topic. Learn not only the "how" but the "why" behind the cultivation of an inclusive and supportive workplace environment. Discover methods to cultivate an environment where team members feel secure to share ideas openly, ultimately enhancing collaboration and innovation. Our course ‘boost psychological safety’ provides in-depth knowledge and actionable takeaways, empowering you to navigate and influence the various facets that contribute to a truly exceptional company culture. Elevate your understanding and capabilities beyond the surface level, and gain insights that can drive lasting positive change within your organization.

Quick wins.

Changing company culture doesn’t happen overnight. But it also doesn’t improve magically. Need some inspiration? See how these rebels have done it. They have a great company culture and are highly successful in their industry.

To get you going, we have some quick wins.

Set core values

Perhaps even before you try to improve the workplace culture, it is a good idea to look at the company’s values. They are at the core of the culture.

Core values are guiding principles for decision-making and actions. Clearly communicating and reinforcing these values fosters a culture based on trust, integrity, and a shared sense of purpose among team members.

Cultivate connections

Relationships are important, also within teams. Even when team members work remotely. You could facilitate team bonding activities, such as team-building exercises, off-site events, or casual gatherings, to foster genuine connections among team members. Building strong relationships enhances collaboration, improves communication, and strengthens the overall team dynamic.

Nurture growth opportunities

Lack of career opportunities is the main reason people leave their jobs. Support career advancement by offering mentorship programs, providing training opportunities, and establishing clear pathways for professional development. Encouraging continuous learning empowers employees to acquire new skills, take on challenges, and contribute meaningfully to the organization.

Master transparency

Prioritize open communication about company goals, decisions, and challenges to foster transparency. Transparent communication builds trust among management and team members. It promotes a culture of accountability and shared understanding, as well as a common goal.

Establish recognition initiatives

Recognition comes in many shapes and forms. Good old praise, but also monetary recognition, like bonuses or personal development opportunities. In whichever form it comes, recognition is incredibly important. And easy!

Recognize specific achievements, whether big or small, to boost morale and reinforce positive contributions. Regular acknowledgment creates a positive work environment and motivates employees to excel.

Celebrate team success

In line with recognition: teams deserve the same applause as individuals do. Regularly celebrate collective victories, such as project completions or team milestones. Celebrations create a positive and motivating atmosphere, strengthening team bonds and fostering a sense of shared accomplishment.

Flexibility

Acknowledge the importance of work-life balance by offering flexible work arrangements. Whether through remote work options or flexible schedules, providing flexibility demonstrates a commitment to employee well-being and helps in attracting and retaining top talent.

The art of giving regular feedback

Provide constructive feedback timely and constructively. Regular feedback sessions, both positive and developmental, guide employees in their professional growth. Regular feedback gives direction. It also shows that their contributions are valued and contribute to a culture of continuous improvement.

Lead by example

Cultivate leadership that embodies and exemplifies the company's core values. Leaders who 'walk the talk' set a positive example, fostering a culture where integrity, accountability, and ethical conduct are not just words but integral to daily actions.

Integrate company culture into the hiring process

Make cultural fit a pivotal consideration in the hiring process. Prioritize candidates whose attitudes and values align with the company culture. This contributes to company culture by ensuring a harmonious work environment and brings higher chances of long-term employee satisfaction and productivity.

Autonomy inspires

Foster employee autonomy by avoiding micromanagement. Trusting team members to manage their responsibilities effectively promotes a sense of ownership and independence, contributing to a more efficient and empowered team.

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