Improving organizational culture is a concern for many managers and business owners. Organizational culture is a phrase we hear a lot, but what is meant by organizational or corporate culture? How to develop, measure and improve the organizational culture of our business? In this article, we will tell you what organizational culture is and why it is considered a competitive advantage by many experts, and then we will introduce ways to improve organizational culture.
Organizational Culture | The importance of organizational culture | The impact of organizational culture | Improving organizational culture
What is organizational culture?
Organizational culture reflects the identity of the organization. This culture determines the beliefs and daily behaviors of employees in the shared work environment and shows that:
- How employees work together;
- How employees work with the organization;
- What is the value that employees place on activities?
- What are the individual goals of employees and the alignment of those goals with organizational goals?
Culture is effective in employees’ understanding of the organization’s goals, mission, and vision, so all employees need to know what the organization is pursuing. At the same time, these goals must be aligned with the individual goals of the employees. Goal alignment is an important principle that is often overlooked. It is not enough for employees to do their job just because they have to or just to earn money. Attracting employees is a two-way street: Employees need to know that the growth of the organization will lead to the personal and professional growth of themselves.
Culture is different in different organizations; For example, some companies have a culture of cooperation and teamwork; That is, employees work together to achieve goals. Some businesses have a broad approach in which each person has their own goals and strives to achieve them. Some companies are very formal and require employees to wear formal clothes and be at work at certain hours. Others take a different approach, leaving employees free to choose their clothes and manage their time.
It cannot be said that one culture is better than another. Every organization must find its own culture.
The importance of a good organizational culture
A strong organizational culture makes the organization work like a smooth wheel. In such a culture, each employee is aware of his or her own values and acts in line with the values of the organization.
It is easier to associate employees in a structure with the right organizational culture; Because all employees know what the organization expects of them. To effectively implement organizational culture, all members – from senior executives to lower levels – must encourage organizational culture-enhancing behaviors. Investing in organizational culture is a long-term process, but it is certainly rewarding.
The impact of organizational culture on business
1. Better work environment
It is more pleasant to work in an organization with a certain and transparent culture. Organizational culture is a guide that helps employees know what is expected of them, thus reducing people’s ambiguity and uncertainty about their plan; Something that is essential for the mental health of employees. This situation makes the work environment more socially and psychologically pleasant. In addition, when everyone knows how to behave, coping with others becomes easier and less incompatible.
2. Improve the quality of work
Without a strong organizational culture, the company’s values and the way to achieve them are definitely not clear. This means controlling employees, monitoring their behavior, and encouraging them to work with the greatest effectiveness, effort, and effort. It is clear that a strong organizational culture reduces the need for managers and group leaders to oversee, because employees know what their work means to the organization. As a result, organizational culture helps to improve organizational performance.
3. More organizational acceptance
In an organization with a codified and transparent culture, it is easier to accept the principles and beliefs of the company for new employees and encourage them to work in line with the goals of the organization. Employees in such an organization are more motivated and more enthusiastic and loyal. As a result, not only are employees less likely to leave the organization, but employees become company representatives.
4. Strengthen teamwork
Strengthening team solidarity is one of the most valuable outputs of an effective organizational culture, because employees know where they stand and believe that their co-workers are doing their job well. In addition, employees know what an important role their work plays in the success of the organization and are aware of their own worth.
5. Get better and more
Everyone likes to work in an organization with a pleasant culture. Culture is one of the biggest strengths of well-known companies like Google and Facebook. Many companies today see cultural alignment as part of the hiring process.
6. Enhance informal learning
Focusing more on collaboration and teamwork provides an opportunity for informal learning. In most workplaces, only 10% of what is learned is the result of formal education, and the rest of the learning takes place while working and interacting with others.
Recommendations for improving organizational culture
Now that you are familiar with some of the benefits of effective organizational culture, it is time to look at ways to improve organizational culture. Follow these tricks:
1. Listen to the staff
Provide opportunities for staff feedback; For example, arrange regular sessions in which top managers and lower-level employees exchange ideas. Employees work longer in organizations that care about their opinions. In contrast, when employees feel inaccessible to managers, they reduce their effort.
2. Communication is your key
Effectively define the organization’s values, vision, and mission for employees. In this way, employees feel they have a common goal and, as a result, no longer see themselves as small nuts in a large machine, but rather as key nuts for the team.
In organizations where values are not clear to employees, only 1 in 150 people do their best. In addition, employees who believe that the values of the organization are clear and understandable are 51% more likely than employees who do not understand the values of the organization.
3. Emphasize cooperation
Emphasize employee collaboration to show that you are all one team. Take advantage of interesting content in the company’s learning management system. Provide opportunities for employees to support each other and overcome challenges together. In one study, 86% of employees and managers attributed their failure to ineffective communication and lack of cooperation.
4. Be transparent
Transparency builds trust. Weekly advertisements on the company’s website, in the organizational group or in the learning management system about current events will inspire employees. In one study, 50% of employees believed that information sharing by the boss and manager had a positive effect on their motivation and productivity.
5. Follow the leader
Organizational culture needs care, and it starts at the top of the pyramid. Leaders must clearly demonstrate that they believe in the principles and beliefs of the organization. Showing videos of CEOs or other senior executives in training programs is helpful. 89% of employees who believe that they have the support of the organization’s leaders, consider the company a good place to work. Fifty-two percent of HR experts consider external management to be the biggest obstacle to improving organizational culture.
6. Give regular feedback
Employees need to receive regular feedback to align their performance with the culture of the organization. Annual staff conferences are not enough. You should encourage behaviors that align with the organization’s values and identify areas that need improvement. Things get smoother with regular reporting. A survey found that 68% of employees who receive accurate and regular feedback are satisfied with their job.
7. Create epic value
We all like to be superheroes and do great things. Show employees that each of them is a superhero for the organization and that their work plays a key role in the success and development of the organization. Feed the staff with training content so that after a while you will all be on the same path to success.
8. Use gamification
Gamification or game development makes employees eager to achieve more and better. Scoring in gamification is attractive for employees and provides an opportunity to chat and shout. Such an environment is great for improving organizational culture.
Organizations can increase the cooperation of employees by using gamification. Also, 9% of respondents to the survey claimed that they are more productive in work or educational environments that have a playful atmosphere.
9. Reward employees
Reward employees who best represent the culture of the organization. In a culture that recognizes the efforts of employees, there is less job leaving and more cultural persistence. In companies with the top 20 in terms of recognition, voluntary staff turnover is 31 percent lower.
Provide opportunities for growth by creating challenges. This way, employees will find that you trust them, and as a result, their loyalty to the organizational culture will increase. Many employees, especially younger ones, believe that the opportunity for professional growth is an important element in an organization’s culture. Employees who have the opportunity for personal growth and development are more likely to want to work with the organization for a long time.
Do you know the organizational culture of the company in which you work? Do you think it is in line with your personal goals? How can managers help improve organizational culture? How is this done at your workplace? If you are a leader as a manager, share your experience with us.