Why You Have To Get Your Culture Right

Culture is a word that is bandied about quite frequently, it means different things to different people. However whatever the actual meaning a business with the right culture grows and attracts better people, who stay longer. Businesses where the culture is poor obviously have the opposite effect, staff leaves frequently, particularly the good ones and the business struggles.

I wanted to share some examples of companies with great cultures and the benefits this brings as well as share some ideas that will hopefully help to improve your current culture.

We all know that Google is one of the most popular places to work, in fact, they receive over 2 million job applications each year. They are definitely spoilt for choice in this regard. Facebook is similar and another company renowned for great service, Southwest Airlines in the US also receives thousands of applications each year.

Great company culture is a sure fire way to attract the right talent and that is critical when you want to be the best in your field. Unfortunately, I hear a lot of companies complaining it is hard to find the right people. It’s challenging but the right people are being employed somewhere, it may as well be with you!

It’s easy to think that it is only big companies that have the resources to develop and maintain an amazing culture. They can offer free lunches, ping pong tables, massages etc to keep their people motivated, we can’t do that. Probably true for most, so what can you do? I wanted to share some ideas that I picked up recently from an article published by Employment Hero. Employment Hero is Australia’s first all-in-one cloud-based HR, payroll, and benefits platform, providing all the tools and resources businesses need to hire great talent and keep them super happy.

Great workplace culture is not just about perks, instead, it is more to do with providing ways to help your people meet goals and become more productive and successful in their careers. Every business can do that. Companies with a learning culture are popular employers, so here are four suggestions:

  • Offer growth opportunities. Most workers, (particularly the younger ones), are keen to expand their knowledge to make it possible for them to learn, on the job and off the job. You should be offering regular training courses related to their field. You could reimburse (or subsidize) tuition in non-related training courses. Or create a mentoring program. All of these things will help to build their skills, which they value highly.
  • Recognise value. This one is generally free! All staff members love praise so make sure you do this frequently. You could create a system whereby staff members are nominated by their peers and/or customers for the extra effort they have put in. If they come up with new ideas that benefit the business, reward them for this.
  • Provide employee benefits. Most businesses do something here, however, how well used or appreciated are these? One way is to ask staff what they would value as an ongoing benefit or a one-off reward.
  • Keep the workplace flexible. A popular benefit you can offer potential employees is the opportunity to balance work and personal time more effectively. Not always an easy one in retail, however, if you can offer this, it is a great incentive for a number of staff.

Creating and maintaining a great culture is hard work, yet the benefits of being able to recruit, retain motivated and highly productive team members far outweigh any drawbacks. And if your culture isn’t the best, you’re going to lose your best people and only keep the less engaged ones. That is a quick recipe for disaster.

Roger Simpson – CEO, The Retail Solution and Author of “The Ultimate Retail Sales Experience” With over 35 years’ industry experience, Roger Simpson is recognized as Australia’s #1 Authority on customer ROI in the retail industry and as a global expert on staff coaching, customer service, and selling skills.