Antiquated business systems, complicated or redundant processes, siloed information, and poor management waste time and money, but they also make day-to-day operations feel ineffective and pointless, dampening morale and leading to employee turnover. When you’re spending more time and resources on problems, you’re investing less in product innovation, employee development, and other initiatives that make your company an attractive place to work.
Creating a company culture that’s modern and responsive to employees takes dedication, but it can make a real difference in the workplace. An important way to create the culture you want is to focus employees on a common vision and values they can work toward and feel excited about, and from which all goals and objectives are aligned.
Here are the five values our company rallies behind every day that you can use to create your own culture of excellence.
1. People-First Approach
Your employees — a.k.a. your “people” — are the life and soul of your business. When you understand what employees are looking for in a company, you can attract the top talent you need and earn their respect, enthusiasm, and loyalty to boot.
Today, employees want flexibility and opportunities for career growth. They want to perform meaningful work that gives them a path to progression within the company. And they expect work-from-home options and flexible work hours that provide the autonomy and work/life balance they need. Listening to what employees want and understanding how the workplace is fundamentally changing is at the core of a people-first culture.
When you put your people first, you’re also better positioned to find and hire a diverse range of employees who each bring to the table a variety of talents, skills, and perspectives that enrich and strengthen your entire organization.
Equally important are your customers. Meeting customer needs and providing great service doesn’t just drive customer loyalty. Being customer-centric also gives your employees clear objectives to work toward and moments they can be proud of.
When the customer is at the center of every idea, decision, and interaction, you’re able to give customers the products and experiences they expect. If an idea or decision doesn’t benefit the customer in some way, it gets tossed out. Generally, customer-centric companies are proactive and accessible, anticipate customer needs, respond to feedback, and nurture the customer relationship beyond the sale.
When everyone is guided by these same principles, they can row in the same direction and collaborate across the organization, giving purpose to what they do. Even better, your employees can actually see that they’re making a difference when customers are satisfied.
3. Operational Efficiency
Becoming more efficient isn’t just about cutting costs, nor is it a one-time exercise. Instead, it’s an ongoing effort to optimize processes, tools, and people through a commitment to continuous learning and improving.
Automating time-consuming or repetitive processes, reducing administrative burden and paperwork, facilitating collaboration across the organization, and managing employees more effectively are at the heart of operational efficiency. Removing barriers to information so it flows more freely between people and teams, as well as creating more visibility and transparency overall, also boosts efficiency and can transform your whole business.
Through a combination of the right technology solutions and management practices, you can cut costs and waste while also ensuring your company is a more dynamic, enjoyable, and effective place to work.
4. Growth Mindset
Individuals are capable of personal growth and development. By helping employees grow, you ensure you have the talent, skills, and gumption to achieve whatever your company sets out to do. Every employee helps advance or grow the business, not just sales.
Companies with a growth mindset believe in maximizing every employee’s potential. They consider that most, if not all, of their employees have what it takes to advance in their role, whether it’s moving up to management or into other departments. Offering coaching, skills training, and mentorship programs give your employees the attention and tools they need to live up to their potential and help the organization as a whole live up to its potential.
When individual capacity for growth is recognized and compensated, you also improve employee retention. Employees want to work for a company that doesn’t see their current talents as fixed or limited, and values all employees instead of just some.
5. Product Innovation
The rate of change is accelerating everywhere, and those who prioritize innovation have a distinct advantage when riding the waves of change. To innovate successfully, you need to instill a culture that embraces technology and honors creativity.
An innovation culture gives employees the freedom and latitude to develop what’s interesting and exciting to them, to form new teams and projects that can take the business in a new direction. Employees are encouraged to ask questions, try out new tools, imagine new scenarios, and adapt to changing circumstances. Making the space for discussions about what’s possible, not just practical, fuels innovation.
By valuing product innovation, you also show your workforce that the company is capable of leading the field. This inspires employees to take pride and ownership in their work and know they’ll be supported in their efforts and ideas.