Building a Winning Company Culture
“Culture eats strategy for breakfast.”
Management icon Peter Drucker’s classic quote highlights the need to get the culture right before diving into execution. If there isn’t alignment among people, values, and priorities, then even the best-laid project plans can fail –– or at least become more expensive, difficult, and time-consuming.
But how does an organization build a culture of success? Addison Group has more than 20 years of experience in developing both its own exemplary company culture as well as helping clients find the right cultural fit for their organizations. Read on for the key ingredients of a winning culture that are essential for moving engagement, productivity, and business results forward.
Find the Right People for Cultural Fit
First, an important clarification. Hiring for “culture fit” doesn’t mean that every employee should be a clone of the hiring manager and HR –– far from it. In fact, valuing the diversity of background, experiences, and opinions helps create a vibrant culture that continues to grow through additive perspectives. Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) is also needed when recruiting a top workforce. In fact, a Glassdoor study found that three-quarters of job seekers and employees consider diversity and inclusion when sizing up potential employers.
According to a Forbes article, the right way to hire for a cultural fit is to create job descriptions that clearly articulate key qualities and attributes for the role and then, to help reduce bias and avoid creating a homogeneous culture, use standardized scorecards to evaluate candidates.
A culture that meshes and brings diverse people together must have shared values. Building a strong culture begins with the hiring process, and sourcing and selecting candidates that believe in the mission of the company will ensure that cultures get stronger with the addition of new people.
Coaching is Culture
Talking about culture often brings to mind images of an organization’s mission statement and all-hands meetings. No doubt, these elements contribute to an organizational ethos. But to really embed culture on a deep level, leaders should be investing in individual coaching, mentorship, and one-on-one feedback.
According to Harvard Business Review, coaching “creates a true learning organization” and “all managers should engage with all their people all the time, in ways that help define the organization’s culture and advance its mission.”
With improved collaboration and employees feeling more appreciated and engaged as a result of coaching, both productivity and retention will likely improve—key outcomes that support a healthy culture.
Building a Community of Shared Values
Everyone values a healthy workplace culture. Perks like salary and benefits may get people in the door, but culture is what helps top performers stay––or drives them away. A 2022 Sloan Management Review study indicated people are 10 times more likely to quit their jobs because of toxic work cultures rather than lack of compensation or work-life balance.
With this much riding on company culture, it can’t be taken for granted. The values that brought people together will start to dissipate if they’re not reinforced over time. A sustainable culture takes deliberate leadership that finds ways to constantly recognize the core traits that make the group succeed.
There are a variety of ways to perpetuate the culture, both through in-person and virtual activities—both are important when you have a mix of hybrid, fully remote, and/or fully in-person employees. Town halls, retreats, Slack conversations, employee recognition programs, coffee meet-ups, and other ways to connect are all efforts to keep the culture alive and well.
Build Employee Advocates
Ultimately, building a culture that people want to celebrate is a virtuous cycle. When employees inside the organization are thriving, they naturally want to tell their peers and bring in other top-tier talents. Taking these steps to strengthen culture will produce immediate returns.
Satisfied employees can become advocates online and offline. That can include adding positive company reviews on Glassdoor, Indeed, and Google, as well as talking up the organization’s benefits in networking situations. Talking about work with friends and connections is natural, so building employee satisfaction will build the brand and recruitment efforts by extension––which in turn will attract the type of employees to make the organization better in the long run.
Key Takeaways for Culture
Building a winning culture doesn’t have to be transformative, but it does take dedication and resources as well as sound communication across the organization. If culture isn’t continuously building, it will start to decay. It takes effort and focus to grow.
The good news is that there are workforce experts at Addison Group that can help, with more than 20 years of experience (and recently named one of the largest U.S. staffing firms in 2022 by Staffing Industry Analysts (SIA)) in finding and placing top-tier candidates in a variety of roles at organizations of all sizes and different industries. Whether you’re looking to develop a robust company culture from the ground up or add new talent that can further strengthen your culture, we’re here to simplify the candidate search process for you.
Looking to find your next great hire? Contact Addison Group for help finding the best talent for your organization.