If you feel like your employees are more and more dissatisfied with their jobs and careers, the statistics actually back up your suspicions. According to a survey recently conducted by CareerBuilder, 21% of full-time employees plan on changing jobs this year, up 4% compared to recent years.
One of the best ways to guard against high turnover is to improve your company culture on a fundamental level. When people know they’re working at a place with a thoughtful and inspired philosophy, they’re less likely to seek out greener pastures. Here are six tips for improving company culture at your business.
If your company culture isn’t defined in writing, you won’t have much success improving it. Is your work environment bounded by structure, rules and regulations or more laid back? How do you expect new hires to be treated? How about those from different backgrounds? What are the core values of your business?
Apply thorough consideration to all of these questions and include your answers in a clearly worded statement. If you don’t already have a defined company culture in place, get going on one today.
Conduct Informal Reviews
If you’re not constantly communicating with your employees, you may not become aware of problems such as low morale until it is too late. Don’t wait around for formal reviews. Set aside some time each week and initiate personal conversations with selected staff members to discuss company culture.
Creative Team-Building Events
Want to try a team-building event to improve company culture? How about one based on your business’s core tenets? If you’re a strong believer in trust, try out a few trust exercises. A quick Internet search should give you plenty of specific examples. Are strong interpersonal relationships among staff members important to you? Take your employees out for a night of bowling or throw a picnic so they have a chance to get to know each other better in a casual, fun setting, away from the office.
Review Your Hiring Process
Make sure your HR and recruiting staff members are clear on your company culture as well—and get them to discuss it during the interview process. Your hiring professionals can weed out candidates they don’t feel would be a good fit, and potential employees can get a clear understanding of what it’s like to work there before they accept an offer.
Offer Inventive Employee Perks
Instituting an employee referral program is a great way to improve company culture, since your staff already knows the type of workers you’re looking for-and a referral bonus can generate some serious enthusiasm. If you want staff members’ families to have deeper relationships with one another, allow them to attend company events, such as softball games and the annual holiday party. If your business model is compatible with telecommuting, offer a modest telecommuting plan first to the employees whose positions can best accommodate telecommuting. See if it works without affecting operations.
Look to Other Success Stories for Guidance
Need proof that interesting company culture improvement ideas are effective? Look to the Seattle Seahawks football team for inspiration. Its scouts are allowed to search for players who may not necessarily fit into the organizational system, but can add value of some kind. It’s then the head coach’s responsibility to put that value to use by allowing the players to be themselves—as long as those players give the team a better chance to win.
The Seahawks’ culture is guided by one simple, yet effective phrase: Always compete. If you’re curious about the effectiveness of the plan, their recent Super Bowl win should be enough confirmation. Consider offering up your own variations of this idea in your organization.
If you’re not living and breathing the basic tenets you put forth, you’re going to have a hard time getting your employees to buy in. Start walking the walk more instead of just talking the talk. That step alone could go a long way toward improving your company culture.