Quick Tips: How to Define Your Company’s Culture

200330784-001Company culture is a hot topic. It affects how companies market their products, advertise their services, recruit new hires, retain current employees, and even design their websites. But before you can start sharing your culture, you’ve got to know what it is. Check out these five tips on what you should do when defining your company culture.

Look at Your Employees
Your employees are your company. They give your business life. If you take a close look at your team, you’ll likely be able to spot a glimpse of your company culture pretty quickly. Are they from the same generational group? Do they have similar backgrounds, education, passions, skills, character qualities, or styles? The elements you see standing out in your overall employee population are a strong foundation for defining your culture.

Identify Your Company’s Mission
This should be easy if you’ve already established a mission for your business. If you haven’t created a central mission for your company’s existence, then now is the time to do it. Are you there to give outstanding service, provide an invaluable product, make people smile, or help your employees succeed? Having a company mission is imperative, not only in outlining your culture, but also in creating goals and charting your plans for future growth.

Experience the Work Environment
When was the last time you walked your halls and experienced the environment for yourself? You can learn a lot from watching how your team interacts, how individuals have their workspace decorated, and if people like to go to lunch or have after-hours drinks together. Close your eyes and listen. Do you hear excited voices collaborating, laughter as the result of camaraderie, or quiet professionalism? All these factors speak loudly of your culture.

Review Your Compensation and Advancement Program
How you pay your employees, as well as how you handle employee advancement, are direct reflections of your culture. Consider if you give pay raises based on performance or tenure. Do you promote employees because of skills, leadership ability, or years of experience? All of these things reveal where you company places its value and how important your employees are to you.

Study Your Customers
Finally, take the time to study your customers. Your company culture exists whether you define it or not, and your customers are obviously attracted to it. Contemplate the same things you did when you looked at your employees – generational groups, backgrounds, education, passions, skills, character qualities, and styles. Also, find a way to see what your customers see when they interact with your business and employees. A better understanding of your clients is a better understanding of your company.

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