Founders and early employees are the ones who develop the company’s cultural blueprint. If not intentionally managed, the culture can dissipate.
As a new manager, it’s easy to manage the existing culture with the current population of team members. As you begin to hire additional employees to fill the ranks, sustaining the culture that once was becomes more and more difficult.
To ensure your company culture grows at the same speed as your business, consider these three safeguards.
1. Survey your employees. Your employees are on the front lines and, therefore, have the most valuable information, yet over 75 percent of our prospective customers who attended our recent webinar, “8 Engagement Strategies to Drive Performance,” reported not having a strategy in place to survey what their employees want/need. If you want to know what’s happening to make a difference in culture, you have to ask.
Today I received a friendly message in my inbox from my employer, Paycom. It read, “You have been invited to complete a short survey. Your honest feedback is greatly appreciated and will be used to make improvements in the workplace for current and future employees.” I know they are good on their word, so I filled it out.
Depending on what information you are seeking, you could ask questions such as:
- What makes you proud to work here?
- How does the organization support your professional development and growth? How could we improve?
- Do you feel the organization provides an environment that promotes a culture of open and honest communication?
- If you could change one thing about the company, what would that be? Why?
The key to an effective survey is follow-up. Again, I knew Paycom was being truthful when they said that my feedback would be used to make internal improvements, because they disseminate the findings from surveys and take action, when necessary. You may not always be able to fix a problem employees bring to light right away, but you still should address their concern and explain why you can’t do anything now or give them an alternative to how you can help. One of the biggest mistakes organizations make in the survey process is failing to disseminate the findings to management and employees.
By giving your workforce a channel to consistently provide its feedback, you are strengthening the lines of communication and building loyalty and retention, all of which positively affect company culture.
2. Train your employees. There are many research studies, articles and experts out there that claim to know the best ways to train employees. And they all might be right. But to train your employees, you might actually need to invest in a learning management system (LMS).
With an LMS, you can train and develop employees online, through a portal. This portal supports all of your branded learning initiatives, which employees easily can access at any time. You’re able to train all types of learners and deliver an assortment of training curriculums. Providing employees with the tools and knowledge they need to succeed at their jobs is a driving force that can assist your organization in meeting your goals, cultural and otherwise.
3. Empower your employees. Employees want autonomy in the workplace. This isn’t new news, and still, 50 percent of our prospect webinar attendees reported not giving employees access to an online self-service portal.
Employees want to feel a sense of control and stability at work. A self-service portal meets these basic needs. Employees easily can access personal information, such as W-2s, pay stubs, time-off accruals and more.
Having this information at their fingertips enhances transparency and fosters a sense of trust. Establishing trust fosters a more open company culture – one of which employees will be proud to be a part.
These three safeguards serve to ensure that as your business grows, so does your culture.
For more insight on employee engagement, access our free, on-demand webinar, “8 Engagement Strategies to Drive Performance.”