Company culture is not what you read on the website. It is what the employees tell their friends.
Good company culture is not synonymous with having table tennis, a football court, and a lot of food (although we’d all love that). Company culture is more about the values and way of thinking in a company. It is similar to how personalities are for people. For start-ups, company culture is majorly influenced by the founders. It is the personality and way of thinking of the founders that get transcended into the company culture.
Why is company culture important?
Candidates and companies are mutually looking for ‘culture-fit’ options. It is a big deal as culture affects morale, growth, and efficiency. Rigid cultures that can’t adjust or heed to employee wants and needs are an obstacle for business growth especially with the markets being turbulent.
Identity: Workplace cultures are significant differentiators in a marketplace. When your employees go out with their friends and discuss their work-life, they shouldn’t be using terms like exhausted, toxic, bad politics, and no growth. These are the red flags that companies must notice if they want to build a positive and healthy workplace culture. And if you have a supportive and performance-driven culture, your employees will naturally advocate for it.
Employee retention: Workplace culture is a deal-breaker when it comes to competitor poaching and employee retention. By providing friendly culture and employee benefits that assure that they are valued and trusted, you’re more likely to retain them. A challenging and supportive culture is a win-win for the company’s and employee’s growth.
Companies have different cultures. There are no set types of culture you can choose from. However, you can take inspiration and build your own. The basic components that contribute to a good company culture are trust, empathy, communication, and transparency.
Here are 10 company culture examples to inspire from
One of the fastest-growing companies has attributed a portion of its growth to its culture. Efforts put in employee engagement, gamified virtual company events, internal master classes, workation are consistently reaping benefits.
“Culture should be created and not be dictated from above”, Abhishek Paul, Culture Shepherd at Kissflow. Kissflow religiously invests in their culture. The culture focuses on inclusivity, performance and easy problem-solving. The new hires are free to express their likes, dislikes and what changes they want to bring in. They follow OKRs and prefer small teams for high performance and easy management. Every Friday, they have a G2G (Good to Great) session to connect, learn and have fun. With work from home, G2G has become a significant aspect to grow and bond.
upGrad recently offered ESOPS/Employee stock ownership to its employees. They believe in the talent and want to retain it. They are also popular for setting up a flexible and fun culture. By providing benefits for upskilling, they are supporting personal and career development.
Fun and family is what the employees at Zappos swear by. Zappos keeps communication with the employees to improve and discuss all the bottlenecks. They have a bi-weekly meeting across all departments called Voice of Employee and a quarterly all-hands meeting. Managers dedicate 10 to 20 % of their time to team-building activities. When they hire, they make the new hires be a part of the Customer Loyalty Team where they get to answer customer calls. This training program gives new hires hands-on experience in understanding the company. As a company, they are obsessed with customer satisfaction and are not willing to have anyone in the company who would say otherwise.
Employees who work at HubSpot have HEART: Humble, Empathetic, Adaptable, Remarkable, Transparent. They focus on flexibility and autonomy even in decision-making processes. Instead of handbooks and guidelines, they follow the policy; use good judgment. This not just paces trust on employees but also makes them responsible. The culture has evidently amplified the company’s growth.
Flexible, fun and sense of community – words that describe the culture at Google. The culture is built on trust in employees. They hire self-driven, innovative, talented and curious candidates who fit the culture. They prioritize innovation and provide avenues for employees to voice and challenge their skills. Google has a flat hierarchical structure and an open communication policy that enforces ownership and transparency.
Zoho conducts many events and also encourages clubs and discussions to drive employee engagement and relationships. To boost the same, they also have an open office set up. Employees are free to take initiatives and participate. Appreciation will follow.
Adobe offers huge perks like paid family vacations, cafes, healthcare and whatnot! However, Adobe’s company is more than the perks. It’s their core values (innovative, inclusive, exceptional and genuine) that bring growth to the business which they use in return to invest in their employees. With a $10000 allowance/per year, they encourage employees to learn and develop skills and knowledge. They can do certifications courses and degrees.
Nike has exclusive training programs to get new joiners accustomed to the brand and the culture that shouts talent, diversity, and inclusivity. They hire talented folks and committedly work towards minimizing barriers that affect growth and performance. Programs like Bias to Breakthrough (for turning barriers into creativity) and NCourage (cultural awareness and community building) helps in streamlining and development.
Yes, they offer fancy perks but if you dig deeper you will see the foundation is built of feelings, emotions and loyalty. SAS takes effort to show that all employees are individually valued and they believe they will positively reciprocate. While the perks are symbolic representation, valuing its people is the core of SAS’s company culture. Now, employees don’t want to leave SAS and are more productive even in a pandemic.
Things to remember when you are building a workplace culture
Wear it proudly like a badge. Communicate on social media platforms, with your employees, and even on your job listings. By communicating aptly with your employees often, you reinforce that they are important to you. Consistent interactions will help you stay up to date and resolve hitches.
Action and result-oriented
Workplace culture is not just about the benefits and fun. Efficiency, satisfaction and growth are largely affected by the culture, environment, and hierarchy. Have processes and operating models that are result-oriented. Focus on long-term solutions and ensure the people are recognized for the work.
Based on the size of employees and budget restrictions, you can find the perfect package for employee benefits. The common benefits are health insurance, and paid time offs. You can also choose if you want to employ mental wellness programs or give allowances.
Learn more about organisational culture and its impact on employee performance