Every company needs to undergo a culture transformation at some point or another. Unfortunately, corporate culture can be a difficult thing to change. That’s because many young entrepreneurs and career-goers don’t want to risk their job or business security by disrupting the status quo.
However, with proper guidance and a clear strategy, corporations can make meaningful changes that lead to a healthier, more productive work environment. To ensure that any cultural transformation is successful, there are some key steps to take. Below, we’ll take a look at some of the ways corporate companies can accept cultural transformation for the better.
Assess Current Corporate Culture
The first step is to assess the current corporate culture. This means looking at which practices and values define the current corporate culture, and how these practices might impact the way employees view a business. For instance, almost 70% of people said they believe their work environment was toxic. While you might not think of it as such, a toxic work environment can be created by small but consistent negative behaviors.
Some examples of a toxic work environment and corporate culture might include:
- Not valuing employees’ ideas and opinions
- Managers who don’t take the time to listen
- Failing to recognize good work
- Creating an environment of fear
Once you identify the areas that need improvement, you can move forward with your cultural transformation. The last thing you want is for your employees, and in turn, your customers, to think of your corporation as toxic.
In addition to understanding the current practices and values, it’s important to understand how employees feel about them. Do they see them as helpful or hindering in their career progress? Are there any elements that need improvement? Once you have identified potential areas of improvement, you can begin crafting strategies to make changes.
Set Clear Goals
Once you’ve assessed the current corporate culture, the next step is to set clear goals for improving it. It’s important to ensure that your cultural transformation goals are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely – also known as SMART goals. One of the best specific goals you should consider is improving employee retention. That’s because, according to the Pew Research center, over half of Americans quit jobs due to feeling disrespected.
If your corporate culture leads to low retention, then it’s time to make a change. Think of ways you can make employees feel valued and respected, such as offering more training opportunities or creating flexible work schedules. Setting SMART goals will help you create clear strategies that move the business towards a better culture in an effective way. In this case, this is what your SMART goal would like for employee retention:
- Specific: Increase employee retention rate by 10%
- Measurable: Track retention rates and compare to past months
- Achievable: Create incentives and opportunities that make employees feel valued and respected
- Relevant: Improve the work environment to foster better connections between employees
- Timely: Increase employee retention in 6 months or less.
Communicate & Monitor Changes
Once SMART goals have been set, it’s time to communicate the cultural transformation changes. You should be sure to explain the goals and objectives of your cultural transformation, as well as how each employee can contribute. This is especially important for larger companies with multiple teams or departments.
In addition to communicating the changes, you must also monitor them and ensure your employees are abiding by new cultural standards. For instance, if you were once lax on foul language, but now have a zero-tolerance policy on it, you should monitor the conversations in the office. If someone does slip up and say something inappropriate, then you can remind them of the new rules and why it’s important to stick to them.
Getting help from Human Resources might be beneficial, as they can assist with monitoring changes and addressing any issues that may arise. Your HR department plays a vital role in corporate culture transformation and can help keep everyone on the same page. More importantly, they should be viewed as a helpful resource, rather than a punishing authority figure, so your employees are comfortable with any changes and asking questions.
Reinforce Positive Behaviors
More than just monitoring negative behaviors, it’s important to reinforce positive behaviors that contribute to a healthier corporate culture. Encouraging employees to recognize each other’s good work, or offering rewards for exceptional performance, is a great way to improve retention rates and culture. In fact, research shows that 85% of employees feel the need to do their best when incentives are offered.
Consider rewarding employees on an individual basis, as well as team-based rewards. This way everyone feels appreciated and valued for their hard work. Additionally, you can also create a recognition system that acknowledges exemplary performance or displays of strong corporate values. For instance, you might reward an employee who takes it upon themselves to create a diverse group, or someone who goes above and beyond to help a co-worker.
Culture Transformation For the Better
When corporate culture is transformed for the better, it not only helps employees but also leads to better business results. So make sure you set SMART goals, communicate changes effectively and reinforce positive behaviors – all of which will help create a successful cultural transformation. By spearheading these initiatives and leading by example, you can turn any corporate culture into a positive and successful one.