6 Tips To Cultivate An Incredible Company Culture

By Christi Anderson, VP Client and Media Strategies & Culture Committee Chair

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If you want your company to succeed and grow, then you’ve got to focus on your company’s culture. Workplace culture is key to employee happiness.

 

A look at the numbers confirms just how important it is to cultivate incredible company culture. According to the book Corporate Culture and Performance by John P. Kotter and James L. Heskett, organizations with strong cultures can vastly outperform businesses with unremarkable cultures. Kotter and Heskett found that strong positive company culture can enhance employee engagement by 30%.

 

Building a positive company culture takes focus and commitment, but the rewards far outweigh the efforts. That’s why it’s no surprise that 94% of executives and 88% of employees believe that positive company culture is critical for success, according to research from Deloitte.

 

A great place to start is to take what your company values and expand on it. At Cannella Media DTC, we value team members with entrepreneurial spirits, that are results focused with a can-do attitude.  We also place a lot of value on the individuality of each team member.  We used these qualities as the inspiration for our 2021 holiday gifting and offered our employees the opportunity to pick a curated gift box of their choosing.  We had four themes and within each box there were certain, bespoke Cannella Media items along with unique items that aligned with the boxes theme.  We should mention, 80% of the items within the boxes were specifically sourced to support over a dozen small business across the country.  It’s not a surprise to share that these boxes were a hit as the employees felt like they were tailored to where their joy comes from and not a one size fits all gift.

 

A positive company culture leads to more engaged employees, higher morale, and more productivity. You can use the six tips below to build an incredible culture that propels your company to greater success.

Tip 1: HAVE A CLEAR MISSION

You can’t build a company culture of any caliber without a clear company mission statement explaining your purpose and clarifying why you exist. Use your mission as a rallying cry to motivate employees to work towards shared goals and embrace your unique organizational culture.

 

Here at Cannella Media DTC, we meet with our entire team at least once a year to review our overall mission and company goals.  By doing a thorough review and offering numerous outlets for continued education opportunities for our employees to grow both their soft and hard skills, we proactively encourage and support their career growth which in turn supports our mission & goals.

Tip 2: HIRE THE RIGHT PEOPLE

If you want to build a strong culture, you need to have people on your team who support your mission, goals and values. Your culture and the relationships you want your employees to curate, both with each other and your clients, should be at the forefront throughout your recruiting process. During interviews, discuss your company goals and ask people what they mean to them and how they would effectively work towards those during their workday.

 

Include multiple team members in your interview process and have several rounds of interviews if necessary. Taking the time to choose the right people who will fit into your culture is always worthwhile.  A great employer will know when to bypass someone who may look “perfect” on paper for a candidate who will fit their culture better.

Tip 3: LEAD BY EXAMPLE

Even when you’ve hired the best talent, you need to have leaders who advocate for your culture and values. Nothing is more demoralizing than a leader who subscribes to the “do as I say, not as I do” mentality. Your leadership needs to embody your culture in all they do and all they say. When your leaders are champions for your organization, your team will respect and emulate them.  Prioritize regular touchpoints with your senior leadership team and always encourage them to continue to work on their own development, both personal and professional.

 

Remember that culture starts at the top—whether a small team or a large corporation. Your employees will mirror what you say and do.

Tip 4: COMMUNICATE CLEARLY AND REGULARLY

You might have a clear company mission or goals, you might have hired the best people, and you might practice what you preach. Still, communication is a critical element that empowers you to build an incredible company culture.

 

Be sure to communicate intentionally and regularly about key topics—company news, successes, changes, and challenges. Follow these tips to maximize the value of your communications:

    • Identify clear messages about your culture and reinforce them in your internal outreach. Consider clarifying your values in company-wide training and then publicly praise employees who emulate those values in a company newsletter or meeting.
    • Use multiple communication channels (such as email, in-person, video, Teams) to reach employees in various departments and roles.
    • Foster two-way communication and create an environment where employees feel encouraged to ask questions or share ideas. You might consider an “ideas” email inbox where any employee can send suggestions to be reviewed by higher management.

 

We hold bi-weekly All-Agency video meetings to keep our employees up-to-date on things that are happening across the various channels within our company. We also use these calls for our team to share family news and fun photos, hold agency-wide polls on both fun and relevant topics and celebrate birthdays and anniversaries.

Tip 5: EMPHASIZE HOW EMPLOYEES’ JOBS CONTRIBUTE TO YOUR SUCCESS

One of the most critical steps to building a positive culture is helping your employees understand how their work contributes to your company’s overall success. Most people desire to be part of something bigger than themselves and do work that brings meaning into their lives. People want to feel needed, necessary and vital to their company’s success, and your encouragement will help them feel proud to work for your company.

Tip 6: CELEBRATE AND RECOGNIZE SUCCESS

Whenever possible, pause to celebrate behaviors that exemplify your culture. For example, if your organization has an intense focus on exceptional customer service, institute a way to recognize employees who excel at relating to customers. Public praise, such as awards or bonuses, is often welcome, but many people appreciate a simple “thank you” from leaders for a job well done.

 

Something we do regularly at Cannella Media DTC is to encourage nominations for Team Members of the Month and recognize & reward the winners during our All-Agency meetings.

Build A Thriving Culture

Companies with dynamic and vibrant workplace cultures often enjoy a clear sense of shared purpose, loyalty and camaraderie among employees.  When you have a visible culture, people outside your organization—such as your customers, partners, and vendors—know what you value and what to expect when engaging with you. Your culture can also reinforce your brand and help you distinguish yourself as a leader in the marketplace.

 

Make 2022 the year that you clarify and prioritize your workplace culture and establish objectives that will make your employees thrive!