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"The Art of Culture: Tips on Creating a Company Environment that Makes Employees Want to Stay"


By Ariel Shaw, Contributor, Internmasters.com

Have you ever been talking to someone at a party, and it becomes clear they have no culture at all? Let me ask you this: Are they the person you spend your night socializing with?


If you are anything like me, then the answer is no. You may grit your teeth and deal with them for a while for politeness sake, but you beat it out of there at the earliest convenience to go to someone who can offer a bit more scintillating conversation.


Well, the same is true for an employee when they find themselves stuck at a company with no people skills. Sure, they may have to stay for a while, but the first competitor that smiles at them will steal them away to give them what they have been wanting all along: a little bit of job satisfaction and positive morale.


The Cost of Being Uncultured:

Employee Retention Beats Employee Replacement

As I am sure you are aware, it is much cheaper to keep a current employee than it is to find and replace them with someone else. And even if it wasn’t, if employees are leaving because of low employee morale, then you are just going to be stuck in a cycle of employee abandonment until you fix the underlying problem.


Hopefully I have convinced you by now that creating a good company culture not only matters to your employees, but it also makes a difference to your bottom line. So no matter how you look at it, you need to take a good hard look at what you are doing and evaluate what you could be doing better.


Signs of a Bad Culture


There are a lot of way to tell if your company culture is okay or get-left-as-fast-as-possible-at-the-party bad.

  • Look at your employee retention rates

  • Keep an eye on online reviews

  • Survey your current employees

  • Conduct exit surveys

How Can You Fix Your Company Culture Anyway?


Once you have decided that you need a little bit of cultural education in your place of work, start creating a plan on how you can accomplish this. There are many ways you can start improving your company culture for the better right now.


For starters, listen to your employees. No two companies will be or should be the same. You have different employees with different wants and needs. Trust your own intuition. You picked these brave workers for a reason: You thought they would work hard and well for you.


In payback for your great decision-making, trust that these people can tell you what they need without creating impossible requests. This becomes a lot harder, though, if you work for a big, multi-location and/or international organization.


Let’s work through an example:. You work for a large, multi-national corporation that has employees across many countries and multiple locations within a single country. How can you positively impact the culture, especially considering different branches have different needs?


There are actually several ways I can think of off the top of my head:

  • You can create employee resource groups that bring like-minded people together within and across sites.

  • You can start leadership development programs to bring future talent in, develop them for specific roles, give them an individualized plan to correct gaps, provide them with mentors to build their morale and build relationships in the organization, and connect with them on a personal-level.

  • You can also work to create a performance-centered culture that values teamwork and freely shares information across functions.

See? It isn’t as hard as it might sound!


Culture Is All About Class


For better or worse, companies often rely on their HR departments to create the culture in the workplace. The problem with this is that HR practitioners are not always equipped to do so.  


This kind of leaves you with two decisions: Figure it out, as if your busy day isn’t filled with enough tasks already, or outsource.

If you choose to outsource, then you need to make sure you pick a company who has successfully created cultures through building teams, developing employees, and bringing in the right talent.


To determine which company is right for you, make sure you do your research before hiring. Just like you wouldn’t hire an employee blind, you wouldn’t want to create a partnership with someone you haven’t vetted.  


If you have any questions on creating a company culture that will make sure you keep all of your best employees, make sure to contact us today.

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