As recently seen, even industry giants with reputations for amazing corporate culture can fall into unfortunate—yet entirely avoidable—culture pratfalls. Corporate cultures evolve based on the people who work within them, but the foundations of these cultures can determine a company’s success or failure. Here are ways you can build a solid corporate culture and avoid all-too-common cultural pratfalls.
Address Discrimination Head-On
To attract the greatest talent, you need your talent pool to be wide open. Discrimination within the workplace quickly shrinks that pool, leaving fewer options and negative public image. To fight discrimination, address it directly whenever it arises and take steps to ensure it does not take hold in the first place. Sensitivity training for management and human resources is a great start, but there are always steps your corporation can take to be more inclusive. Do your research, reach out to marginalized groups, and be willing to learn how to better serve your employees and the community.
Set Employees Up for Success
Make sure your employees have the right tools, training, and time to be successful in their endeavors. One of the biggest oversights in achieving this is not giving employees the right space in which they can succeed. While some employees thrive in open office concepts, others cannot concentrate when surrounded by noise and activity. Some employees do well with fun distractions, like games or a TV room, to help them let off steam, while others struggle to pull themselves away when it’s time to be productive. Work with your employees on an individual, team, and corporate level to optimize their space.
Burnout is a silent killer in businesses. It saps employee productivity, increases employee turnover, and ultimately makes the business less likely to succeed. The good—and bad—news is that burnout is a corporate culture issue, not just an individual issue. There are countless tips for fighting burnout, but the basics are to maintain reasonable workloads, limit working hours, provide your team with ample support, and ensure that they take short breaks and vacations.
Promote Work/Life Balance
In the vein of preventing burnout, a healthy corporate culture also encourages employees to have a good work/life balance. Employees have different needs when it comes to their work/life balance. Some may want to pick their kids up from school every day, others may want to work remotely or bring their dog to work. Reach out to your employees and ask them what you can do to make their work/life balance better. You may be surprised at how easy it can be to accommodate their requests.
Ultimately, the best way to improve your corporate culture will always be to hire excellent people, seek out their input, and implement changes based on that input. However, you can make good strides by doing your research, looking at what other companies in your field are doing, and making corporate culture a priority.