Culture, just the same as your sales numbers or product inventory, needs to be monitored. Actions need to be taken to maintain and increase it.
- Are employees living the intended culture?
- Are you happy with the current attitudes and behaviors of employees at your company?
If you want to change your existing culture, you’ll first need first to take inventory to make sure the foundation are in place. These include:
- Examine What Culture Currently Exists,
- Ensure You Have Clear Vision Statement,
- Ensure You Have A Defined Mission,
- Have Defined Core Values and,
- Review the Culture of Other Companies.
1. What Culture Currently Exists
Observe how your employees work and act. Listen to how they talk to each other and how they talk with your customers. Pay attention to what customers are saying about the company or your organization. What is being written about your business? These are all clues to your existing culture.
Discover and define what is currently in place with this information.
If you like what you’re learning – you may reinforce these (behaviors and beliefs/actions and attitudes) with tools, training, recognition, and reward. Make notes what you like and what you do not prefer.
2. Clear Vision Statement
What do you want your brand to become? In 10 years what is the achievement your brand or company has achieved? Your Vision Statement is your desired future state, your destination. Where does your organization want to go together?
3. Defined Mission
What’s your present state? What is your 1 to 3-year direction? If your vision is the destination, the mission is “how” or the major milestones toward reaching that mission. The mission is what you do together.
Starbucks Current Mission:
To inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time.
4. Core Values
You will often find a company’s Core Values listed as part of their Mission Statement. Core Values are a very strong gauge of a company’s Culture. Values define and guide behavior.
Here’s an example of Starbucks core values:
Starbucks Current Values:
With our partners, our coffee and our customers at our core, we live these values:
- Creating a culture of warmth and belonging, where everyone is welcome.
- Acting with courage, challenging the status quo and finding new ways to grow our company and each other.
- Being present, connecting with transparency, dignity and respect.
- Delivering our very best in all we do, holding ourselves accountable for results.
- We are performance driven, through the lens of humanity.
5. Review Culture of Other Companies
Do Some Research
Take a look at your direct competition and others in your similar industry. What are they doing right (and wrong)? Make a note of what you want to incorporate into your Culture.
Read Job Descriptions of Competition and Well-Regarded Brands. Visit their websites and take a look at their job descriptions. There is usually a section about the “type of employee” they’re looking for. Use this as a guide to understanding the culture they cultivate.
Review the Fortune Best Companies list. It is no secret what ingredients make up the Best Company recipe.
Research performed by the Great Place To Work Institute indicates that Trust, Pride, and Enjoyment are the most important elements of what makes up a great workplace.
Here’s an excerpt from their article, “What is a Great Workplace?”
Great workplaces are built through the day-to-day relationships that employees experience — not a checklist of programs and benefits.
The key factor in common in these relationships is TRUST. From the Employee’s perspective, a great workplace is one where they:
- TRUST the people they work for;
- Have PRIDE in what they do; and
- ENJOY the people they work with.
Trust is the defining principle of great workplaces — created through management’s credibility, the respect with which employees feel they are treated, and the extent to which employees expect to be treated fairly. The degree of pride and levels of authentic connection and camaraderie employees feel with one are additional essential components.
What are you currently doing? Or, what could you be doing to build Trust, Pride, and Enjoyment?