For many companies, the shift to primarily remote workplaces has resulted in spending less time focusing on maintaining and improving company culture. However, a remote workforce makes the focus on maintaining culture an even bigger priority as many employees can feel disconnected from what originally drew them to the organization in the first place.
What is your current environment?
Company culture represents the shared values, ideals, attitudes and goals that characterize an organization. Although it may and should evolve over time, it should be clearly defined. Reflect on your organization’s culture (particularly before any work-from-home scenarios) to evaluate where you currently stand and where corrective action might be needed. Begin by asking yourself and employees these questions:
- How defined is our company environment?
- How specifically is it defined, and how do our new hires become aware of our defined culture?
- Do employees have a reasonable knowledge of brand values?
- How often do you see your team leaders failing to adhere to your ideal culture?
According to Time. Talent. Energy, employees that feel engaged and inspired are 125 percent more productive than the satisfied staffer. Additionally, including employees in conversations to define and improve the current culture may energize the team, leading to further company success and employee fulfillment.
Remote work culture
According to YouEarnedIt, 49 percent of employees say that company culture influences their employee experience more than their physical workspace or the technology they use. If your employees aren’t able to meet in person, you’ll have to expend effort to promote personal connection.
Although remote workers are communicating via email, text, phone, video conferencing and other tools, they are missing out on relaxed conversations that usually occur naturally in the office. These conversations typically include information about their lives and interests, help build relationships between coworkers and lead to a cohesive corporate culture. Plan time before, during or after video team meetings for employees to have the option of sharing personal updates. This will help long-time employees as well as new hires feel a sense of normalcy and have their experiences acknowledged. It may also be helpful to schedule weekly or biweekly check-ins for HR or leaders to meet one-on-one and with the team.
Other tips for maintaining culture virtually and in-person:
- Give employees a voice and encourage them to use it
- Be transparent – let them know what’s going on
- Be supportive (especially when it comes to employees wellbeing)
- Maintain frequent communication
Project your company culture
Your employer brand is shaped in large part by your corporate environment. Showcasing your culture with potential customers, clients and prospective candidates is no longer an option in this uber-connected and transparent marketplace. In fact, 35 percent of employees claim they would pass on their ideal job opportunity if the company culture didn’t appeal to them. Job seekers have placed a higher value on company culture and their acceptance of an offer is dependent if they seem themselves fitting in.
A thriving and well-established company culture will help attract and retain talent, leading to less turnover and better chemistry. Marketing tools like your company website and social media can allow you to highlight your culture through your tone of voice and brand personality, communicating core values and testimonials from employees (and clients if applicable).
Visuals are always the most effective way to display your company environment. Look for ways to proactively add visuals to the candidate journey, particularly where they would look for more information like on your social platforms, website and even job description. Embrace authenticity by sharing employee-generated content, such as a staff member live-tweeting an office event, sharing behind the scene work-life photos or showcasing employee accomplishments.