How to Use Your Company Culture As a Competitive Advantage

February 17, 2022 - 9 minutes read
How to Use Your Company Culture As a Competitive Advantage

Building company culture is crucial in 2022 – and, truly, every year. When a business begins to expand, owners can easily start to lose the control, vision, and culture that they’ve created. The company culture you foster allows you to have a competitive advantage in your industry.

Managers and owners need to use culture to create:

  • Company personality
  • Workplace environment

Focusing on this culture doesn’t just mean making your workers happy. Culture has numerous elements, including ethics, value, company mission, goals and more.

If you lack culture, it will likely eventually lead to:

  • Poor productivity
  • Lack of morale
  • Higher turnover rates
  • Lower sales
  • Less employee engagement

A survey of 3,200 business leaders and employees found that 69% were able to gain a competitive advantage thanks to the culture they created.

If you want to create a culture that will help you gain a competitive advantage, attract top-tier talent and retain these professionals, the following tips can help you build a culture that employees want to be associated with.

4 Tips for Building Company Culture

1. Gain and Build on Current Company Culture

Before doing anything else, sit down and learn about your current company culture. Whether you realize it or not, you have a culture that already exists in the workplace. You can build off this culture, but you need to define it first.

If you’re not sure what your culture involves, survey your employees.

You should ask your employees:

  • What they like about your company culture
  • What they don’t like
  • Suggestions on improving the company culture you’ve built

What will this step help you do? It will help you change course by changing negative experiences in the workplace and building on what already works.

Utilizing the right tools and processes can help you build on your already existing culture. A few of the many ways to begin building on the current foundation of culture are to:

  • Share success stories and achievements in real-time. Celebrate the milestones and goals reached by employees and teams.
  • Recognize and acknowledge the advancements of employees. For example, if a new member of your sales team struggled to land new clients and has significantly improved, recognize this and acknowledge the improvements.
  • Throw company events that bring employees together.

Whenever possible, use 1-on-1 communications, even if it means videos sent from the owner or VP to the team to thank them for helping boost profits last quarter or stay late to work on a project with a quick turnaround time. 

2. Work to Improve Employee Wellness

There’s a reason 77% of adults consider company culture before they apply for a job – it’s  important. Employee wellness is crucial, especially when talent is in such high demand. Employee wellness can be improved in many ways, including finding ways to lower stress, avoid negativity, share your “wins” with employees and always find tools and resources to help employees succeed.

For example, you might offer new productivity tools or systems to help employees focus less on mundane tasks and more on core tasks.

You can also offer the option for employees to work remotely a certain number of times a month to reduce stress levels.

Some companies even offer physical wellness benefits, like reimbursement for gym memberships.

Get creative and consider how you can contribute to your employees’ overall wellness. 

3. Hire Talent That Fits Into the Culture You Create

Talent is in high demand across industries, yet it’s too easy to look at a person’s skills and credentials rather than whether they’re a good fit for your company. Hiring talent must go beyond these basics and focus more on how the person will fit into the overall culture you create for your business.

Hopefully, the person with the most credentials and experience is a good cultural fit for your business, but they may not be.

New hires can make it difficult to retain talent because they disrupt the company culture too much.

During the hiring process, you should change your processes to:

  • Ask behavioral questions to determine if the person will be a good fit for your workplace.
  • Optimize your interviewing process to gain a clear understanding of the person’s experience, skills and how they’ll fit into your culture.

Attitude should be a crucial component of the hiring process. Just because a person can step into a role immediately doesn’t mean that they will benefit the rest of the team. Create balance in the workplace by hiring talent that can bring new ideas to the business while fitting into the rest of your company’s dynamics.

4. Bring Meaning to the Position

Happy employees are 12% more productive, and what can help improve happiness? Meaning. Many employees come to work every day to collect a paycheck. Perhaps the person likes their work, but they go through the motions every day when there is no meaning behind it.

It’s up to you to bring meaning and purpose to a position.

When positions are meaningful, they’ll lead to greater job satisfaction and productivity. One way to bring meaning to the position is through acknowledgment and rewards. However, you can take it a step further by incorporating:

  • Examples of how the person’s position will help the business grow
  • Ways to show how employees are crucial to business operations

Sit down with employees and explain how their role in the business will help shape the future of the company and help clients and/or customers.

Want to take it a step further?

Reinforce your core values by creating peer awards. These awards can be monthly or annual awards that are given out to employees that:

  • Exceed expectations and help the business the most
  • Represent the very core values of the business

Every employee must know that their position has a meaning and purpose that goes beyond merely a paycheck.

If you need help finding meaning and purpose, it may be time to hire a business coach to help. These professionals can help you see your business in a new light and make sure you’re following your mission and vision properly.

We’ve scratched the surface on improving and building company culture. Your business will need to routinely send out surveys to employees and refine ways to continue creating a workplace that people want to be a part of today and in the future.

If you want to build a strong company culture and grow your business, we need to talk! Schedule a call today. 

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