3 Tangible steps to improve your culture

This blog post originally appeared on the Greater Memphis Chamber’s website. View the original post here.

With pressing items like maintaining visibility in the marketplace and increasing bottom lines vying for attention, company culture may seem to be less important or even get lost in today’s business environment. However, having happy and healthy employees is a prerequisite for long-lasting success. How does one “fight” for company culture?

1. Increase transparency

Transparency can be a scary word for some, but it shouldn’t be! Embracing open communication does not mean you release an unlimited amount of classified information to the masses, it just means that you let down the walls between executives and employees. Simply put, transparency is trust. By giving your team unfiltered insight into operations and the future of the company, you are creating a level of comfort and security that is crucial to a healthy office culture. Individuals working in environments where open communication is valued tend to feel as if their voice matters, which enhances loyalty and retention. If you’re a leader, make yourself available to employees, ask for their opinions or let them sit in on a long-term strategy meeting. It will make them feel good and you look good.

2. Reward in public. Critique in private.

Recognizing and rewarding top-notch work is a great way to make employees feel appreciated and valued. In a world where trophies and awards are given out just for participating, honors can lose their meaning. This is why giving out nods to those only when individuals go above and beyond the call of duty is a sure way to make them feel good.

On the flip side, critiquing individuals in private rather than in a group setting is crucial. Getting berated in front of colleagues can create distrust and disrespect among your employees. Take the time to sit one-on-one to address instances where they may have fallen short. Doing so shows you are invested in their professional growth and genuinely want to see them succeed.

3. Start at the top

If you’re not embracing the company culture, why should your employees? Always remember that company culture starts at the top. Leaders must embody the culture they wish to instill day in and day out. After all, being an executive isn’t just about delegation or instruction. Effective leadership requires one to be a servant leader by getting into the thick of things with the team when needed, treating others with respect and setting a good example. When employees see their bosses modeling positive behavior, it creates a ripple effect, allowing that type of culture to permeate the workplace.

This blog post is part three of a three-part blog series from Obsidian PR – click to check out part one and part two. To learn more about the topic of corporate culture, sign up to attend the Chamber’s September Lunch in the Know. Obsidian’s senior account manager, Whitney Albert, will discuss all things corporate culture and provide impactful action items for small business owners and leaders. We hope to see you there!