There’s more than one way to build company culture. I’ve met some leaders who effectively try to dictate culture, imposing a set of values on their team members. And let me tell you, that almost never works. A culture has to emanate from your entire team; it has to be something that arises from the way your employees interact with one another day in and day out.
That doesn’t mean leaders can’t actively shape their company culture, or try to achieve a culture of a certain kind. What it does mean is that you need buy-in. Simply put, you need your team members to agree to the culture you’re proposing, and to take it upon themselves to live out that culture and its values.
Sound like a tall order? It can be—but I have a few guidelines that can help you out.
Getting Employees on Board with Your Company Culture
- Be an open-door leader. In other words, be approachable to your team members. Let them know that they can come in and talk with you any time they have questions, concerns, or ideas of their own. Here’s why it matters: By being approachable, you show them that you’re not trying to force a culture on them; rather, you’re trying to build a culture with them.
- Offer praise where praise is due. Employees will feel more excited about the company and its culture if they feel like their role is appreciated—so let them know it when they do something you think is praiseworthy!
- Set goals and offer autonomy. Another approach that I recommend is setting some clear objectives—for individual employees as well as for the team as a whole—but then allow them to determine how they’re going to reach those goals. This provides both a sense of purpose, but also a sense of ownership.
- Stay social. One more thing I’d recommend: Make sure you’re organizing some opportunities for the team to get together and socialize. Having some time together to bond, outside the work environment, helps build team unity and enthusiasm for the culture you’re making together.
Again, there’s more than one way to create a company culture—and I think you’ll find it much easier if team members are crafting it with you. Contact me directly if you have any further questions about how to create culture! You can contact Dr. Rick at www.rickgoodman.com or call 888-267-6098.