Defining and establishing your culture is vital to your company for a variety of reasons. It's all about creating a great working environment for the people who want to help you work toward your ultimate business success. Then you need to continually build a team around the values at the core of your company, the principles that make it work (and ultimately succeed).
There's no "secret sauce" for getting your company culture right, just a few simple things you need to do.
Have Company Founders Expound on What They Are Passionate About
Creating your company culture needs to start with the founder(s) of your company. The early employees will look to those who started the company for enthusiasm, passion, and belief in core values. Once you've taken the time to set your company values, you need to emphasize them at every opportunity.
Everyone in the company needs to live and breathe what inspired the founders.
The founders of your company came together (presumably) with some shared values they intended to apply together in their business lives. Now they need to delineate these as clearly as possible, perhaps with the help of a dedicated facilitator. Such person may advise taking the entire company on a weekend retreat for the purpose of defining the principles that drive your company.
Get your company culture down on paper and distribute a version of it throughout your company.
Keep Your Company Culture Alive and Well
- Posting your core company values where everybody, staff and customers alike, can see and use them for points of reference throughout the day.
- Recognizing stand-out employees regularly, even in seemingly small ways. Give them a day off, a special parking spot, or a gift card.
- Gathering your team together in regular meetings to discuss the health of the company culture. How's it working for them? What issues might be addressed to enhance it?
During these meetings encourage shout-outs for employees who seem to be exhibiting the best of what the company culture is all about in their daily work. Team members who don't seem to be taking so well to the way you do things might also receive friendly guidance on how to fit in better.
Continue to Hire People Inspired by Your Culture
The best way to ingrain your company culture, and work it into the fabric of your future success, is to hire people inspired by it. New hires will often self-select depending on how clearly you've communicated your core values and what it is that inspires your business life.
Selecting the ones whose eyes light up when you explain it to them is your job.