With so much of employers’ focus on recruiting and retaining talent this year, a lot are concentrating on revamping company culture.
While good pay and benefits can convince a lot of employees to stay, a healthy work environment can be just as critical — and it costs virtually nothing to create.
Research by Deloitte found that 88% of employees believe company culture is crucial to an organization’s overall success, as well as employee happiness.
Here are just some of the benefits of a healthy company culture, according to Forbes.com:
- Attracting more talent. Who wouldn’t want to work for a company known for its happy employees? Word of a positive culture will get around and could be the thing to seal the deal for prospective employees.
- Less turnover. Positive culture will help recruit workers as well as retain them. If people are pleased with their work environment and enjoy going to work, they’ll be more loyal.
- Better teamwork. A good company culture fosters collaboration and socialization. It’s only natural this would lead to employees effectively working together. Employees also tend to be more motivated and to produce better work in general.
- Less stress. Companies with healthy cultures tend to see fewer stressed employees.
Focus on employees
So how can employers build a healthy company culture? It’s not overly difficult, but it won’t fall into place just because you want it to, either. Here’s how one company went about it.
Jeff Chambers, CEO of Lumin Digital, knows how important it is to intentionally create the kind of culture you want.
“A lot of companies are focused on performance metrics and revenue, and a culture just sort of emerges,” Chambers said. “Sometimes it’s a good one, and sometimes it’s not. We wanted to avoid falling into that.”
Chambers’ goal was to create an intentional culture at Lumin Digital — one employees would love to be a part of. So company leaders got together and came up with some values they wanted the culture to consist of, transparency, inclusion and flexibility making the top of the list.
“We decided we wanted managers to focus on employee behavior instead of fixating on outcomes,” Chambers said. “When you invest in the people, they’ll produce the results you want.”
Transparency and trust
A big thing Lumin Digital focused on was ensuring employees knew management trusted them. Chambers said this meant managers weren’t constantly checking in with workers. Instead, they expressed confidence in their employees that they could get the job done.
Transparency is key to help build this trust. “This can be uncomfortable for leaders,” Chambers said, “but at our company, we know it’s important to share everything — even the not-so-great news.”
Lumin Digital has weekly roundtable meetings between small groups of employees and company leaders. This creates a relaxed setting for leaders to share important news and for employees to give their input. Employees appreciate the fact they have easy access to company leaders — and this allows them to feel good about sharing opinions.
Chambers’ efforts to achieve a transparent, trustworthy culture have paid off, the company boasting an impressive 1% turnover rate. Lumin Digital has also ranked in the 95th percentile for employee engagement.
“We put effort and trust into all our employees, and we get that from them in return,” Chambers said.
4 more strategies
While working on building trust and transparency, here are some other healthy culture strategies employers can implement:
- Focus on wellness. Employees won’t be able to appreciate company culture if they aren’t feeling their best. Physical, mental and emotional wellbeing are the foundation to a great culture. Leaders should look into providing wellness tools and on-site health opportunities.
- Share your values. Employees feel more connected to their job and company if they know their work has purpose. Give your workers concrete examples of how they’re positively contributing to the company or clients.
- Keep things positive. Leaders should lead by example and praise employees and practice kindness. It’s important to show any rude or negative employees that their behavior won’t be tolerated.
- Always listen. The easiest way to know what will make employees happy is to ask them! Not only can you tailor a culture to what they need, but they’ll be appreciative you took their opinion to heart.