It’s a good question. Can we define good company culture? Let’s try.
Good company culture is when you walk into the office without feeling like someone is clocking your arrival. Where your co-workers stop you to say “hi” and ask you about your weekend plans. Where your boss checks in with you often to see how you’re doing and what progress you have made on your assignments. Where you attend meetings with outlined agendas and expectations are clear. Where you gather for happy hour and go on team outings. Where you have lots to do and plenty of variety.
Good company culture is when you walk into a quiet office, get your coffee, and sit down to start your day without interruptions. Where your co-workers are friendly, but not invasive. Where your boss checks in but focuses on you, personally and removes any barriers, and leaves you in charge of managing your workload. When you have one project to focus on and dig deeply into the possibilities. Where meetings are reserved on an “as needed” basis. Where instead of team buildings, dinners, and events, your boss rewards you with a nice letter, small bonus, or time off from work.
There are so many other scenarios that could also make up a “good company culture” for YOU. The definition of a “good company culture” is different for different people. Each one of us has a different idea of the perfect job, the perfect boss, the perfect company culture. And while leaders are trying to establish a positive, productive, and engaging company culture—they need to recognize that in this case, one size does not fit all. So, the question remains, “how do I create a good company culture for my team?”
Finding Your Definition: Individuals
At Crosworks, we work closely with individuals to help them achieve career clarity and a huge part of that is by examining their interests, usual behaviors, and their stress behaviors. This gives the individual insight into what, to them, consists of good company culture. For example, we often ask our clients: “what do you need out of your position?”
At first response, the usual things are communicated; respect, specific salary, growth, appreciation, creative freedom, etc. But we want you to dig deeper.
- What are your interests? What sort of projects and assignments motivate you?
- What is your usual behavior? In what environment are you the most productive? What are your strengths?
- What are your stress behaviors? What do you need to combat these stress behaviors?
At Crosworks, one way we help you identify these needs is through the Birkman Assessment.:
“The Birkman Method reveals four key perspectives of every person: Motivation, Self-Perception, Social Perception, and Mindset. In understanding these perceptions and how they influence each other, individuals can better understand the emotions and actions that drive their life.” (birkman.com)
Every person brings different strengths, weaknesses, and NEEDS to a team. Being aware of what these are for you will help you secure the right position and communicate in productive ways. Developing self-awareness and then finding your voice to advocate for what you need is imperative in understanding your ideal company culture. If you find yourself in a situation where your needs are not being met, it is your job to communicate what you need to your leaders. You want to be successful. Your leaders want you to be successful, understanding and communicating what is necessary for you to succeed in your position will help your leader provide it for you making both parties more fulfilled and successful.
Finding your Definition: Leaders
As leaders, finding a good company culture for your team can be tricky. The tricky part being finding a balance between coming together as a team and giving the individuals of your team what they need to succeed. The goal for most leaders is to create a culture that is all-inclusive and presents a feeling of belonging and respect among employees. However, reaching that goal means different things to different people.
Understanding that the way you lead may not work for everyone on your team. For example, one employee may appreciate the team outing to the game as a “thanks” for all the challenging work, whereas another employee would have preferred a note of thanks and a small bonus instead. Identifying what your team needs on an individual basis will help you find a balance between the two. Even if you consider yourself an excellent judge of character, realize that your perceptions are not always accurate. What someone exhibits on the outside may not be a clear indicator of what is going on inside.
Encourage a common vision, mission, and goal within your team and then focus on the individual’s needs to determine the best way to achieve them. Give your employees permission to share with you exactly what they need. Align practices, processes, and recognition systems with individuals as well as the group to maintain balance and promote all-inclusive and respectful company culture.
When working with organizations and leaders, Crosworks also incorporates the Birkman Methods and philosophies to promote productive teams and enhance problem-solving. Each of the 4 quadrants of the Birkman Method works well together in a team setting. By having a variety of personality types on one team, different thoughts, ideas, and solutions are presented, offering better results. Having like-minded individuals on one team prevents an element of innovative thinking and creativity when it comes to productivity.
Empower your team members to be self-aware and authentic. Make it a priority to listen to what your employees say they need. Understand their strengths and their styles to enhance their idea of good company culture. Understanding individuals’ traits and strengths to the advantage of the entire team not only gives that person job satisfaction but enables the team to be stronger. Spotlight the things people do well by providing specific tasks and responsibilities to them that are in line with their top qualities and get to know the way your employees communicate and learn to recognize when something is off and/or wrong and address it.
We Can Help!
We understand that finding the definition of “good company culture” is not an easy task. Balancing needs, wants, and expectations can be difficult to navigate and at times, frustrating. Having someone outside of the situation who specializes in not only the Birkman Method but also career strategy can be extremely beneficial to you or your team. Crosworks works with individuals and organizations to help identity what exactly you NEED to succeed, and we are here to help. With an exceptional team of experienced career counselors with vast knowledge expanding all different industries, environments, and company cultures, we can guide you to become happy within your role, your team, and your career.