Creating a Unique Culture Webinar

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Creating a Unique Culture Webinar

tandem HR exceptional workplaces exceptional people good morning everybody my name is Tom feegle and welcome to tandem hr’s fourth-quarter webinar creating a unique culture we’re glad to have you this morning talk about what I think is the most common characteristics of a successful and during company and that is their culture now before we get started I will let you know that we have a if you have any questions as we go along you can submit them to the chat box and wheel answer them at the end of the presentation so in my 20 year career as an HR consultant I’ve had the great opportunity to work with many different companies and industries and observe observe firsthand some healthy cultures and some not so healthy cultures so this morning I will share with you not only the best textbook practices of creating a unique culture but also what I have learned and seen personally in my travels so every company from small businesses to large corporations has a culture this culture that every company has can either work for the company and help fuel its success or can be very damaging and ultimately caused the company to fail successful companies know that there is more to just creating a business plan to solving the company’s problems or setting the company’s direction they know that without the support and the buy-in from their employees that these plants will fail so to capture the hearts and minds of their employees and help them achieve their business plan they create a unique and healthy work culture and the most common characteristic of a healthy company culture is the values that guide them and have them act and guide them behave in any situation so first before we get into determining and creating our unique culture I think it’s important to provide a definition of what we mean by the term culture the traffic culture was first used way back in the Roman times by the orator Cicero to mean the cult of pation of the soul modern times anthropologists have used this term to describe the behaviors qualities and unique characteristics of any group of people now defining work culture can be difficult as you it is usually thought of something that is abstract really hard to visualize a common textbook definition for what work culture is the set of beliefs values and norms shared by organizational members but I’d like to describe work culture in a different way so let’s say that you and I started business together beginning on the first day you and I will develop particular ways of handling the work and how we are going to behave towards one another we may not even be aware but over time they will gradually become our acceptable way of doing things so now let’s say we brought in some business and now you and I have to start hiring some employees which is a good thing right from the beginning these employees will observe how you and I interact and how we get these don’t get things done these employees will repeat our habits and gradually they become our company’s acceptable safe way of doing things another way in other words these become our company habits so I like to define workplace culture as the habits that have grown over time and defined how things get done around here although these habits may not be completely visible they are reflected in the actions taken by you and I and our employees so now the approach we just described that you and I are taking would be considered an unstructured approach to creating our culture hopefully the habits we formed our productive and inspire people to believe in our business and allow us to be successful in the long term but what if it doesn’t turn out that way the alternative to hoping it all works out is for us to deliberately from the beginning create the guidelines that will determine how we work together and how we will get things done this would be considered the structured approach to creating our culture a structured approach to creating a culture has been shown to increase the probability that our company will be successful not just for a couple of years or when the demand is high for our product but also when times are tough and we are going through changes so this structured approach to creating a unique cultures what we will be talking about today so let’s talk about how culture is tied to business success cultures that place a high value on its employees at all levels assure that there is an extensive employee

interaction across all levels and treat our employees equally and with respect are known to get positive business results and there are four particular results i would like business results i would like to discuss a little bit further number one positive healthy cultures have a good employee retention in a company that values workers for their contributions to the business employees experience high morale and a positive attitude towards the organization workers with the positive attitude are loyal to the organization which reduces employee turnover worker turnover has a high cost to the business with increased costs for recruitment hiring and training the healthy corporate culture can help retain valuable employees and reduce expensive administrative and human resource costs secondly reputation companies with a healthy corporate culture gain a positive reputation among potential employees which may attract talented and skilled workers to our organization in addition to attracting high quality workers a well-regarded business reputation allows the company to change to charge a higher price for the products and services and increases the value of the company in the financial market customers may prefer to conduct business with a business with a solid corporate reputation as well thirdly productivity the improved morale of workers in a company with a help healthy corporate culture increases productivity when workers increase productivity the financial health of the organization improves and profits increase increases in productivity are a measure that illustrates efficiencies and effectiveness in the company employees can benefit from this increase in productivity with higher salaries and better benefit programs and lastly successful businesses have better quality a healthy corporate culture encourages workers to consistently deliver a high quality product and service companies with cultures valuing the highest standards create an atmosphere for workers to deliver the products that meet those high standards the cultural standards for excellence are an important factor for creating a product or service with a reputation for high quality so let’s go back to the example that you and I the example of you and I starting the business if we both agree is better for our company to take the proactive approach and build a deliberate company culture what would it look like what are the things that we should do as stated before I’ve had the great opportunity to observe the habits of hundreds of different companies in my career and I believe most of these habits that demonstrate company culture can be broken down into four categories number one communications empowerment behaviors and management style so let’s go through these forged categories and see how a company’s culture how companies demonstrate their culture number one under communications high-performing cultures or healthy company cultures the people go to the person they have an issue with or a problem with first before talking to others in weak company cultures people talk to others about a problem they have with somebody or a co-worker rather than the person themselves and we may have all experienced this situation and when this happened two things happen if number one in high performing cultures when people address the issues with themselves they develop trust in one another and they continue to grow and develop their working relationships in a week culture when people are talking about someone behind their back it is very destructive and causes distrust in the organization another way culture is demonstrated is in any changes that will impact another person high-performing cultures think of who will be impacted by the change and we’ll notify them beforehand conversely in weak cultures they’ll make changes that affect people without telling them and as we all know when we experience this it leads to a lot of frustration to the person who didn’t know about the change and is caught off guard when they are what become aware of it also high-performing cultures share information they think of who could use

the information any information to be effective in their job we cultures on the other hand keep information to themselves they are not willing to share it and hoard information for themselves also company cultures demonstrate themselves in how we what is acceptable response time so a high-performing culture every employee promptly respond to all internal and external requests or any type of communications usually within 24 hours in weak cultures the companies allow people to respond to an email or voicemail or anybody’s request whenever they want or sometimes not at all secondly high-performing cultures and cultures can demonstrate themselves with empowerment and empowerment goes a long way to developing the rich culture that successful companies all have so under empowerment delegation is very important high-performing cultures provide opportunities for people to grow by giving them challenges and are not afraid to extend the leash a little bit to allow them to learn in at sometimes they make mistakes but most importantly they are allowing their employees to learn in weak cultures they feel is better to do it themselves so it gets done right the first time also decision-making allowing the people to work to who allowing the people who do the work to decide how it will get done is very important for high-performing cultures in we cultures usually only it’s only the management that make all the decisions and how the work is going to get done risk-taking high-performing cultures allow people to take calculated risks fail and learn from their mistakes and we cultures they feel that taking risks is way too dangerous and lastly inner empowerment accountability high-performing cultures make all people accountable accountable for their performance and their behavior in weak cultures they allow employees bad employees with bad behaviors to stay employed thirdly let’s talk about company behaviors I think it’s interesting to note that high-performing cultures have a certain way that they are looking at the customer they understand that we wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for the customer and conversely we company cultures you’ll see that employees will talk and talk about the customer and treat the customer like they are a bother and also under behaviors is interesting to see and note that healthy cultures demonstrate themselves with a lot of courtesy and cooperation in other words people treat each other with respect and Ultron at all times conversely in weak cultures people are rude and impolite to each other so lastly another way that company culture demonstrates and displays itself is in the management style that the company has so first off got my back in high performing cultures managers do not throw their employees or their peers under the bus and we cultures managers act in their own self-interest by focusing on and protecting and promoting themselves in doing what’s best only for themselves secondly visibility hype in high performing cultures managers make their presence known and are not afraid to help their staff when needed and weak cultures managers rarely come out of their office and are not visible at all also double standards and high-performing cultures there are no double standards managers hold themselves to the same standards that they expect and have for their staff and weak cultures you’ll see this displayed as do as I say the do as I say not as I do philosophy and lastly good cultures good cultures with good managers understand and place a high priority on training and development they provide the resources in the train so the people can effectively do their jobs not only for today but for tomorrow in we cultures they do not place the emphasis

on trading and expect people to figure out on their own so before we continue I’d like to take a quick poll and ask you to let us know if you think your company demonstrates more than fifty percent of the time the aspects of the high-performing cultures that we just discussed so we’ll give you a little minute a couple minutes to provide us your responses yep okay so the results are in so it’s good to see that more than fifty percent of us out there believe that our company their company is displaying and demonstrating the characteristics of high-performing cultures let’s that’s good to know the forty three percent that said that does not happen as we go through the remaining of the webinar I’m sure there’ll be some some things that you will see in there that would be helpful and then maybe you can implement or think about providing in your workplace so now that we’ve talked about what culture looks and feels like let’s take a look at a couple of examples of how some well-known companies that have linked their cultures to delivering distinctive value to customers and how successful they are number one south west southwest is Southwest is one of the most admires companies in the country respected in the industry that’s better known for delayed in flights and bad customer service than great corporate culture not to mention the fact that remain profitable in a sector that rarely is one of the reasons for this is that the founder / Kelleher who put in a moment enormous amount of emphasis on culture and the customer experience something that’s persisted even after he stepped down as a CEO so naturally throughout the time at the helm and even now companies wanted to know what is their formula what is the secret behind Southwest culture and its success in an interview with Fortune magazine Herb Kelleher described it this way it’s not formulating the way I describe it is this huge mosaic that you’re always adding little pieces to to make it work and it’s not just a job that you do for six months and then just say well that’s behind us it’s something that you do day and secondly Google we all know who Google is and they are not only one of the fastest and most useful web search engines around they’re also one of the top 100 companies to work for according to Fortune 100 magazine Google’s organizational culture is very strong they hire people that embody their company values and feel the same intensity sire for unlimited amounts of information this desire allows companies the company’s employees to work towards the same goals and intensifies the bonds that they share as a result google has low turnover and low turnover rate and receives over 1,300 applications a day but Google’s culture is a combination of things it’s an ethical customer responsive and spiritual Google encourages employees to be creative in problem-solving which sometimes calls for risk-taking the Google employees also have a sense of team instead of self so this encourages them to work together to achieve goals rather than compete against each other this also prevents unethical behavior Google’s low formalization and service-oriented employees work to be customer responsive they understand that thinking outside the box is what they are known for so

they go above and beyond what others would do to satisfy customers need while maintaining their company values so now let me know what company culture looks like let’s give you some tools to help you will help you create your own unique culture we each one of these in more detail but I believe there are four main steps that should be taken to create a unique culture and they are number one understanding your core business understanding and knowing what you do that cannot be replicated by your competition number three assessing your current culture and blast ly creating values so first it’s important to remember your core business in your industry before we start creating our company culture this will play a big part in determining what type of culture is best suited for our company for example a company that manufactures a product like cheese or an automobile part there will be a lot of value placed on the processes that go along with creating that product so the customer gets the same high quality product every time and at a cost that they are willing to pay so if the customers value a low-cost consistent quality product the company’s culture should encourage and reward its employees for doing these things well on the other hand if your business is in the service industry then your customers will place a high value on the ability to respond and resolve to any complaints or problems as quickly as professionally as possible so in this example we want to create a culture that encourages and rewards the people responding and resolving to the customers completes as quickly as professional as possible so we want to reinforce what is most important to our customers next step 2 is to determine and understand what it is that you do differently than your competition what is it that you do every day that holds you out as different from the rest and cannot be replicated this will make some part of your company advantage and should be leveraged for example does your team seem to naturally collaborate well or do you have an exceptional learning environment where people spend time learning from each other’s experiences does your team seem to be constantly finding innovative ways to create a product or provide a better customer experience these things should be leveraged and should be part of the company culture so now that we understand our core business and our internal strength in what sets us apart from the competition we can now create the programs and strategies that will develop reward recognize and promote these attributes that hold you above the rest so this becomes part of our culture and it we should never shift away from it so now that we now that we understand what our core business is in what differentiates us from the competition we want to take a look and assess our current culture and there are three common ways that you can get a picture of your current culture number one is by observation an impartial observer of your culture be an impartial observer observer of your culture and action observe how people interact and communicate with each other watch for emotions people will get excited and upset about things that they care about and that are important to them and this is reflective of your culture secondly you can interview your staff in small groups and while you’re doing this pay attention to the behaviors and how they interact with each other since we know it’s difficult for people to describe culture them open-ended questions like what is the one thing you would change about our company or what is your favorite characteristic that is present in our company another way to get feedback on your color current culture is to distribute surveys to your employees customers and vendors it is best to use the information you gathered from your observations interviews to create these surveys so these are the three ways you can observe and understand your company

culture the results of this assessment will tell you what you should do more of what you should do less of what you should stop doing or what you should start doing so now that we understand our core business what are differentiators and understand what company culture looks like we are ready to create our company values values are the glue that steer and drive every company in good times and bad so another way of looking at it is you obviously you cannot be there every time to an assist any an employee when they need to quickly decide how to behave in a situation so how will they go about determining this well in these situations people go to what they believe and what they have observed to be the acceptable acceptable wave to behave and respond in other words they’re going to be drawing on your company values so a simple way to define company values is that they serve as a compass for actions described what is important to us and describe how we should behave at the core of every strong corporate culture it’s a strong standing commitment to these set of values values are not intellectual or passive in an organization with strong cultures these values must be perceived to be authentic and consistently applied and durable the values of most successful organizations are admired by the ployees and their customers companies with healthy cultures understand that you cannot force feed values to people and the best way to develop a company the company values is to allow the people who will be following them to make them themselves this then creates the this is how we do things around here or this is how things are done so to do this to create your company values I suggest allowing the whole company to participate in this exercise and allow everyone to share their ideas of what is important for them in order for them to work together in a productive and respectful way so before you start make sure you provide the group and understanding of your core business and what sets you apart as we discovered before as this as we want to align these two parts to our company values that we are going to create so now I’d like to provide you a real-life example of the values that were created at a client of mine that I assisted with about four years ago and as a group they decided that number one they would listen and show respect for all others views secondly they decided that we would discuss the issue and not the person they also decided that we they would always encourage others to participate and they would praise each other and not be critical and they also decided that they will always follow through with their commitments and assignments and if they are not able to get an assignment done on time they will notify the person that needs to know so four year laters I’m happy to say that these values are still in place with this client and they have work to bring about strong relationships and helped up helped make this business successful so now that we’ve talked about how to create your culture let’s talk about how you can stain it sustain it and how you can allow your culture to work for you long term and make sure that it’s enduring and allows you to be successful so the first thing that you can do as a company and also as an individual we also have the the power to take action ourselves and demonstrate the behaviors and the qualities ourselves it’s not just the company that’s responsible and the managers that are responsible for sustaining the unique culture that we want but we can all do this we all have the power to do this every day so number one we always want to empower our people employees want to say and what goes on around them and they want to be communicated with and listen to they want to have their opinions considered and they want to participate in the decisions that will affect them they want to be able to use their education and experiences and call something their own so we want to allow them to have a say in how they will do their work and

also a say in the direction of the company next we want to be a role model it’s important for all of us to demonstrate the company values ourselves first if we want caring cooperative people who are involved we must take the first step and demonstrate it for all others next we want to always seek input from a broad spectrum of employees without employee input will find it very difficult to get anyones by in with any type of project or initiative that we have as we discuss you cannot force this on people it has to be something that they understand it has to be something that they see and value and something that they want next create the right environment none of us can change someone’s personality but we have a lot of control and we can change the situations in which the works gets done so think about how we can create an environment in which people are interacting with each other in in line with the culture that we have created next we want to always encourage authenticity so in other words take the first step and allow yourself to be vulnerable if you make a mistake admit it as this shows everyone that is okay to be wrong and make mistakes when you do this you’ll see others follow suit and this will also help build the strong working relationships it’s also important to make your values visible and point out examples of when people demonstrate the company values it’s always good to commit your values to print and distribute them create a banner and put your values on the wall for all to see it’s also important to make sure that everyone sees what the importance of company culture values are and recognize these in group settings and individual ease compliment employees and let them know that you recognize that they are in line and they are demonstrating the company values as we know the work that gets recognized will usually get repeated so now that we’ve created our company values it’s also important to hire the people with the same values that your company has someone who does not believe in what your company is trying to achieve or does not treat both treat people the same way as you do can be an infection and this can their negative style can sprite spread throughout the whole organization and finally stick with it not everything you do is going to work but that is ok Google and Southwest had their struggles to but they do not let failure get in their way with the right amount of focus and time you your company and your company’s culture can provide you the same success that they have had so that concludes our presentation our fourth quarter webinar on creating your knee culture I hope everyone has learned a few points and understand a few points that they can take back and apply to their own work cultures you