While company culture is becoming part of a bigger conversation within organizations, the challenge is that knowing what makes a company culture great and actually implementing a winning company culture are two different things. Here are the four core strategies we’ve implemented as we are building a sustainable culture that drives performance.
Strategies for building a great culture that drives business start by instilling great leadership and principles and driving an open culture that values communication. Communication should be deeply rooted in corporate strategy, investments, and operating plans to ensure integration and clarity from top to bottom around what is most important to the company and how people can clearly contribute each day. Adding some healthy competition to the mix is key, as well. People love to be on the winning team. At Grand Rounds, we push ourselves to achieve amazing things on behalf of our patients, members, and customers, and that is central to who we are.
While these strategies can appear to be straightforward, leaders, especially HR executives, are challenged to organize and staff their teams to architect this outcome in a sustainable way. Embedding internal communications and employment branding into HR can drive focus and help to build a productive, efficient environment. Adding those strategic weapons to the HR arsenal of services can have a very positive impact.
Great companies are built with great leaders of all levels that team members trust. To build trust, leaders must first have a strong understanding of their industry, which includes the landscape that they operate within and the opportunity that it offers. They then must be able to translate that opportunity into strong operating and talent plans, which will lead to business success. Great leaders will be able to set a vision and purpose, have a strategic mind-set, and have deep business insight—all of which can attract top talent and instill trust along the way.
Fostering a respectful and competitive work environment where everyone takes pride in his or her work can influence performance. Companies should seek to have an audacious vision that allows them to raise the standard of work. We have an audacious vision to reimagine and raise the standard of health care. To do this, like every successful company, we need the best talent to build great products, services, and experiences for our members. We foster a respectfully competitive environment where everyone takes pride in his or her work and performance.
Understanding how members contribute to the goals of the business makes a huge difference in maintaining a healthy company culture. Communication should be done with the intent of making people more productive and ready to give their best performance in their roles. The better they are prepped with valuable, useful context, the faster and further they can go. Clearly, consistently, and continuously communicating the company strategy and how everyone contributes to the success of the company is key. Align values at every level, from company meetings to internal conversations, so that everyone knows he or she is an integral part of the goals. Finally, always strive to have open lines of communications, along with an open-door policy, so that employees know their voice is valued and, most importantly, heard.
“Doing well by doing good”—creating a culture where employees are encouraged to give back to their community—is a key element in company culture. Encouraging employees to give back to their communities through noble causes can inspire passion. Building a giving-back culture will organically create more trust, innovation, and engagement within your company, along with many other benefits.
Creating a sustainable winning culture doesn’t just create a happy workforce, it also creates results. If you focus on communication, competition, leadership, and values like social responsibility, it will also improve productivity to lead to greater performance. Building a winning company culture takes time and can and should be measured. Culture should be added to the list of key performance indicators for all companies as they look to the future. Measure what you want to become this year and in the years ahead.