The Right Culture Gets The Rights Results
It’s not just our intuition – there is growing proof that the right culture can have a significant positive impact on your bottom line. So if you are hoping to increase people and business performance, take a close look at the prevailing culture at your organization.
The Definition of Corporate Culture
We define corporate culture as how things truly get done on a day-to-day basis. It can be measured by understanding the way people think, behave, and work. It can be seen in the words and deeds of leaders, in organizational practices and processes, and in relationships with colleagues, customers, and partners.
The Right Culture Research
- A recent Glassdoor study found that the companies on their “Best Places to Work” list outperformed the S&P 500 for five straight years.
- And, with even more data, Fortune agrees. The magazine claims that their portfolio of “Best Companies to Work For” outperformed the S&P 500 by 84.2% since 2009 and surpassed the overall stock market.
- Our own organizational alignment research found that corporate culture accounts for 40% of the difference between high and low performing organizations in terms of revenue, profits, employee engagement, customer retention, and leadership effectiveness.
The Correlation Between The Right Culture and Business Performance
More leaders are learning about the strong correlation between high performance corporate cultures where employees are productively and satisfactorily engaged and the financial returns of these companies. The question is: What is it about these great places to work that keeps their employees happy and committed to them?
In other words, what does the right culture of high performance look like?
Four High Performance Culture Factors
Here is what we have found are the factors that support a high performing culture where workers are fully engaged and challenged:
- It’s First and Foremost About Healthy Levels of Leadership and the Organizational Trust
It is difficult, if not impossible, to create a high performance culture unless you have high levels of leadership and organizational trust.You will know you are on the right path to high levels of leadership trust when employees have confidence that leaders are setting the right direction, willing to make the changes required to succeed, following through on decisions, and are effective at building trust-based relationships.
You will know you are on the right path to high levels of organizational trust when employees have confidence that the organization as whole is on the path to success, focused on the right priorities, and is truthful and honest with all internal and external interactions.
- Next, It’s Having Strong Strategic Drivers – Vision, Mission and Values
When the company exists for a reason beyond just the profit motive, employees can identify with and commit to a greater purpose than just clocking in each day. When employees know how they contribute to the overall purpose of the organization and believe in that purpose, they report being more committed to its success.Make sure that your Corporate Vision clearly articulates what you hope to become, your Company Mission outlines your organization’s core business and fundamental purpose, and that your Corporate Values reflect your fundamental beliefs and critical decision-making filters.
- And Don’t Forget The Role Leaders Play In Creating a Positive Environment
Great leaders set the stage and embody the behaviors that strengthen and reinforce the strategic priorities and desired corporate culture. They model open communication, integrity, an attitude of continuous learning, and a genuine concern for the well-being of their employees.When the company leadership exhibits and values desired behaviors, they will more easily cascade down through managers to teams and to team members.
- The Final Piece Is How You Recognize and Treat Specific Behaviors
Strong corporate cultures are best represented by their highest performers. And the highest performers (in terms of results and desired behaviors) should receive the commensurate share of the recognition and rewards.Conversely, under performers (in terms of results and behaviors) should be helped to improve or to move on in a timely and compassionate manner so you can consistently maintain high performance standards.
The Bottom Line
Don’t underestimate how the right culture can make or break your company’s business and people success.
To learn more about creating the right culture for your unique strategy, download How to Build a High Performance Corporate Culture Whitepaper