Like a country’s culture, companies have certain behaviors, beliefs, habits, skills, and values that are shared among all their employees, shaping their corporate culture. This culture is the essence or personality of any organization. Although they may have yet to think about it or may not be aware, all companies have a corporate culture.
In this article, we want to answer all your questions related to corporate culture, explain what it’s all about, why it’s important, how many types of corporate culture exist, and how to enhance your company’s culture, so keep reading.
What is corporate culture in business?
Corporate culture is the set of beliefs, actions, habits, or behaviors a company has; in other words, it is the organization’s personality based on the vision, values, and practices shared by all its members.
All companies, regardless of size, have a corporate culture that is the essence of the organization and helps it stand out from the rest. While this culture is often established organically over time, each company can shape it through its objectives or vision.
Corporate culture reflects how the members of a company interact with each other and their clients and how they carry out their tasks. Understanding this phenomenon is simple when we think of corporate culture as something that is transmitted. At some point in their career, professionals have found similarities in dealing with customers, speaking with others, or interacting with everyday aspects of the job and their co-workers. Team members share work processes, respect for rules, and hierarchy, which gradually shape a company’s culture.
What are the critical elements of a company’s corporate culture?
Corporate culture is necessary for the long-term success of an organization. When we help guide our employees towards a positive and unique corporate culture, we can achieve better customer and employee loyalty and, consequently, an increase in productivity.
In its article “Six Components of a Great Corporate Culture,” the Harvard Business Review lays out 5 common characteristics of successful corporate cultures:
The vision statement is a fundamental part of a company’s corporate culture because it provides the organization with a purpose. It’s necessary to ask to build a company’s vision: “Where are we heading?” The answer to this question will give clients, suppliers, and employees a clear idea of the company’s culture.
Together with the vision, a company’s values provide the guidelines for the necessary mentality and behaviors to achieve this vision. That is, values set the standard for how members of an organization should think and act. Most company values revolve around customer service, professionalism, and how employees are treated. Still, in some companies, the values are simple, like Google’s slogan: “Don’t be evil.”
Company values must be enshrined in its practices, so a company’s actions must align with its values. For example, suppose a company claims that the professional development of its employees is in its best interest. In that case, the company should be prepared to invest in training and offer a tangible growth plan.
People are essential to corporate culture because their actions, values, and behaviors define a company. Every organization can build a thriving corporate culture with people who share and embrace its vision and values.
In the creation of corporate culture, stories are of great value. The ability to highlight a company’s history, origins, and how it has survived until now – and turn it into a story – is key to building a company’s corporate culture.
Why is corporate culture important?
A company’s corporate culture is important because it motivates employees, attracts customers, and determines the processes and ways of working of a company. It also reflects what the members of the organization feel and think, and also:
- It helps attract talent by projecting a solid company image, reducing turnover, and building employee loyalty.
- It promotes autonomy in the team since managers do not have to repeat the rules c building employee loyaltyonstantly. A positive corporate culture lays these out implicitly, and employees incorporate them into their daily work.
- It streamlines processes because each individual knows their role and how to act within the organization. This means that there are fewer problems and inappropriate behaviors, and it reduces the time and effort required to resolve any issues.
- It improves the work environment because issues of management or employee coexistence are avoided while also increasing employee commitment and promoting teamwork.
- It helps reinforce the brand image because, in a positive corporate culture, employees feel more valued and, in turn, offer better services to clients, which impacts the company’s productivity and customer loyalty.
What is a strong corporate culture?
Corporate culture requires a group effort since a single employee cannot create a culture. An example is an employee who wants to give a customer a free product or service because of a complaint, but the company’s policies do not allow it. The way employees act as representatives of a brand is essential when it comes to showcasing a company’s culture.
Corporate culture must be present in all areas of the company. For example, if this culture is focused on employee well-being, the company will most likely be concerned with providing training for professional growth and employee benefits. However, suppose the sales department is only focused on increasing profits. In that case, regardless of schedules, training, and work environment, that company’s corporate culture is not focused on employee well-being.
Corporate culture is reinforced over time, starting with establishing the company’s mission and values and then recruiting employees who support this mission and are attracted by its values, strengthening the corporate culture.
When an employee accepts a position and becomes part of the team, this indicates they understand and accept the corporate culture. Companies do not ask their employees to start acting by the company’s corporate culture; this is implicit because employees learn from their supervisors and co-workers.
What are the 4 types of corporate culture?
Although a company’s corporate culture is unique and cannot be copied, it can be nurtured. There are different types of corporate culture, and some are:
- Team-based culture
This corporate culture focuses on employees and building a team that shares the company’s beliefs and values. Companies with a corporate team culture generally look for employees who share these values and care about keeping them happy by providing training, group activities, or simply listening to them.
- Results-based culture
This type of corporate culture is results-oriented and fosters company members’ competitiveness. It is a culture that focuses on efficiently managing resources to obtain the best results, although it can sometimes cause stress.
- Market-driven culture
This culture focuses on company growth and profitability. And since growth in the market is the main objective of companies with this type of corporate culture, every employee must contribute to the company’s success, although employee satisfaction is sometimes neglected.
- Task-oriented culture
Companies with this type of culture usually have a specific professional who performs each task, which ensures that activities are performed well, and their full potential is harnessed. Employees focus on solving their jobs and are motivated because they can take action or express ideas.
How to build corporate culture?
Now that you know what corporate culture is, its characteristics and why it is essential, it’s time to move from theory to practice. Some of the actions you can take to boost your company’s corporate culture are:
- Find professionals who share the same values and ideas
- Motivate workers
- Encourage good communication
- Reinforce good relationships among co-workers
- Promote work-life balance
- Promote professional growth
Continuous training is a pillar of creating and maintaining an excellent corporate culture. From onboarding new employees to guiding them across their new job and work environment, to building loyalty, retaining them, and committing them to your company’s vision, mission, and values. Do you want to give your team the training they need?
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