What is Corporate Culture?
By now, most of us have heard the term “corporate culture” get tossed around. It’s boasted of on job sites, makes its way around office gossip and affects both how you obtain and retain your company’s talent. But what exactly is it, and how can developing a positive corporate culture become the cornerstone of your company – acting on its own to bring in top-tier talent and keep them motivated as employees, while overall increasing workplace productivity and efficiency?
Well, first it would make sense to define the term. In short, corporate culture is why your company exists, and the values you uphold as a result of that. For example, are you an event planning company? If so, it probably wouldn’t make sense to have a dull, bland office environment. You would want your employees to be full of life and as energetic as the events they’re planning, thus radiating your company’s energy to fellow coworkers and clients with each and every interaction!
Furthermore, event planning tends to have a lot of elements to it – food, venues, music, alcohol, transportation. You name it. It would likely make sense to also reinforce a culture that encourages teamwork and collaboration. Some companies are doing away with cubicles and other restrictive measures, and rather motivating their employees to come together, and brainstorm their way to their brightest ideas and execution strategies. They’re implementing policies like open floor environments, ping pong tables and arcade games within the office, monthly stipends for out-of-office gatherings and more. In addition to simply promoting the collaborative nature of teamwork though, it would also make sense for the company to uphold adjacent values such as transparency and clear communication – and not by just encouraging it, but by actively demonstrating it throughout management’s daily actions and supported policies.
Now, these specific circumstances may not apply to your business, but the core principles of developing a positive corporate culture hold true in most circumstances: the term can be defined by the energy you want to radiate alongside your product or service, and cultivating it starts in-house, with the actions and policies you both encourage and display on a day-to-day basis throughout all levels of management.
However, starting this process in-house affects more than just your current employees. It also affects your future employees, and in more ways than you may realize.
How Does Developing a Positive Corporate Culture Affect the Talent You Attract
Let’s take a moment to imagine ourselves as a budding Human Resources specialist with a stunning resume of unique, highly relevant job experience and an over-the-top sense of personability that dazzles interviewers time and time again. As graduation approaches, we send out our resume to a whole slew of companies – perhaps some in industries we’re most interested and passionate about, and others in industries where the salaries do most of the talking. In either case, we line up a half dozen interviews, all of which seem comparable on paper. Maybe a few trade-offs here and there but, for the most part, comparable.
In the first five interviews we’re asked the standard questions, we reply with the standard answers and walk out feeling fairly confident from each – essentially just waiting on who has the sweetest offer. Then last but not least, the sixth interview comes along. The sixth interview is a bit different – the sixth interview asks more personal questions that try to see whether your personality is a good fit for the company. Do you like working individually or collaboratively? Do you prefer in-office or remote work? Do you prefer to be closely guided by mentors or a more hands off approach?
The sixth interview doesn’t have an uppity salary to offer, but these questions open up a new door. These questions poll whether or not the candidate would enjoy and contribute to the values their company upholds, rather than solely evaluate if he or she would be able to accomplish the work the job commands.
The sixth interview makes the candidate feel more at home – as though they could be themselves within the company, rather than another employee ID on the spreadsheet.
Days pass, and all the offers roll in, all at comparable salaries, give or take a few points. Which do you think the candidate is going to go with?
And, if this process is repeated by the sixth company for weeks and weeks, months, even years – what kind of team do you think that would build?
Corporate culture attracts not just talent, but relevant talent. Plain and simple.
A Worthwhile Investment
Developing a positive corporate culture is about more than just upholding your company’s values, it’s about attracting the talent that will add to your goal of doing so, rather than serve as a potential roadblock. Cultivating the right work environment can take some time, especially if it’s something that’s fallen by the wayside for some time now – but it very well may be the most worthwhile decision you can possibly make.
While the process to recruit new staff that aligns with these values can be time consuming, there are also agencies that can help you accomplish this goal. The number one hurdle with this, though, is of course ensuring that a third party not only knows your company’s values – but believes in them and is eager to help you uphold them. In fact, this is exactly why, at Priority Staffing Group, we take the time to understand each of our client’s goals, and carefully vet each candidate to ensure they not only align, but will contribute to and uphold the company’s values.
In either case, an investment in the right work environment is a decision your recruitment team will thank you for, your candidates will thank you for and your current employees will thank you for.
Truly a worthwhile investment.