Defining Company Culture
More and more companies are realizing that their “company culture,” is a critical success factor they need to invest in.
But what exactly is company culture?
It’s like a company’s personality, made up of shared values, beliefs, behaviors, and norms. This shared way of thinking affects everything from how decisions are made to how employees interact with each other and deal with challenges.
Company culture evolves over time based on what’s happening inside and outside the company.
Some examples of company culture include:
- Innovative Culture: Emphasizes creativity, experimentation, and a willingness to take risks.
- Collaborative Culture: Focuses on teamwork, cooperation, and open communication.
- Customer-Centric Culture: Prioritizes delivering exceptional customer experiences and meeting customer needs.
- Results-Oriented Culture: Values achievement, goal setting, and a focus on measurable outcomes.
- Adaptive Culture: Embraces change, flexibility, and proactively approaches new challenges.
- Hierarchical Culture: Emphasizes structure, rules, and a clear chain of command.
- People-Centric Culture: Prioritizes employee well-being, development, and a positive work environment.
Why Transforming Culture Matters: Adapting for Success
Transforming or deliberately changing company culture is important for companies that want to thrive in a world that’s constantly evolving.
Here’s why it’s so important:
- Adapting to Change: In today’s world, businesses need to change quickly. A strong culture helps companies handle changes effectively, turning challenges and setbacks into opportunities.
- Attracting and Keeping Good Workers: Today’s employees want to work in a positive and fair culture. A good company culture not only attracts skilled people, but it also keeps employees engaged, happy and wanting to stay.
- Encouraging New Ideas: A company culture that encourages taking risks and values creativity is a great place for new ideas. When employees feel free to share their ideas without fear of criticism, companies can unlock their creative side.
- Doing Better at Work: Culture affects how employees act. A positive culture, connected to the organization’s values and goals, can help everyone perform better.
The Path to Transforming Culture: How to Make it Happen
Transforming or changing a company’s culture involves taking it one step at a time:
Find Out What Your Culture Is Now:
- Evaluate the current culture by talking to leaders, employees and conducting surveys.
- Figure out the core values, shared beliefs, and what behavior is currently expected.
- This is your starting point.
Define the Culture You Want:
- Engage your employees in defining the culture that matches the company’s goals and aspirations.
- State the core values, behavior expectations, beliefs, and the overall way of thinking that is expected.
- This is your desired outcome.
Leaders Need to Lead:
- Changing culture starts with the leaders.
- Leaders need to demonstrate the values and behaviors they want in the organization.
- Leaders must “walk the talk.”
Get Everyone Involved:
- Employees are essential to successful culture transformation.
- Share what you learned through surveys, explain what you want to achieve, and involve them in making decisions.
Communicate, Communicate, Communicate:
- Tell everyone why you’re making changes, what you expect, how the changes benefit them and how things are progressing.
- Keeping everyone informed helps build trust.
Teach and Train:
- Give employees the skills they need to succeed in the new company culture.
- Deliver training programs and/or workshops to help them learn what you expect, how the changes benefit them, and how to behave in the new company culture.
Give Credit for Good Work:
- Celebrate small wins and large milestones.
- Recognizing good behavior helps everyone keep doing their best.
Check How Things Are Going:
- Changing company culture takes time.
- Regularly check how things are going, conduct surveys, ask for feedback, and be ready to adapt as needed.
Challenges and Things to Think About: Navigating Obstacles
Transforming or changing company culture is not easy. People might not want to change, might not see how the change benefits them, or there might be different subcultures within the company that are deeply embedded.
It’s important for leaders to be patient and adjust the program based on the organization’s progress.
Changing company culture can be challenging but it is absolutely worthwhile. It’s about understanding the current culture, knowing what culture you want, and getting everyone, especially leaders and employees, involved. By doing this thoughtfully and systematically, companies can handle today’s challenges and thrive in the future.
Want to Know More? The Dunvegan Group’s Expertise in Culture Change
The Dunvegan Group has been helping B2B companies for over 25 years to change their culture in a way that helps them improve productivity, keep good employees and high value customers. For more information, contact Anne Miner, President, and Senior Consultant, at email@example.com, 1.888.281.3074, or schedule an appointment today.