Company Culture Matters
Company culture “defines the environment in which employees work.” It can grow and change throughout your company’s development and as your team expands.
Employers should always strive for a successful company culture. Furthermore, a successful company culture is incredibly important for beneficial employee and management interactions. Better teams are built when everyone is on the same page and everyone’s values are consistent.
Employees value company culture and are more likely to enjoy working for a company when their own beliefs and values match that of the company’s. Having happier employees means higher productivity and retention, which in turn, creates a successful organization.
How to Start
The next step is defining clear expectations for reinforcing those values. Once they are defined, you can utilize them in the hiring process, development of employees, and when letting people go.
“When you’re trying to perform a certain set of expectations, you need to know what those expectations are,” President of CITY Colin Wetlaufer said. “The biggest part of that is having an open discussion about it.”
After clearly defining and promoting company values and expectations, the next step is to utilize a system that “will hold people accountable to those expectations.”
CITY uses a popular software program called Threads that helps companies stay on the same page.
“Culture software builds and strengthens your culture by putting your organization’s core values front and center,” Sean Abbas, Co-founder and President of Threads, said. “[Threads measures] alignment to core values, expectations based on the job responsibilities, feedback and is a visual representation of what actual performance looks like.”
Threads uses a method that combines core company values and individual results. By plotting employees on an x-y axis with four distinct quadrants, companies can identify whether or not an employee contributes positively to the company. Those employees that do not follow the organization’s values or are not producing results can then be identified and communicated with accordingly.
Threads also provides the ability to write and store feedback about an employee’s performance which greatly aids in the review process for providing recognition and discussing areas for improvement.
“We recognize employees performance not just in their specific job function but also reward employees for their reflection of the company values,” Nicole O’Brien, Human Resource Manager at CITY, said.
“Threads provides a quick resource for checking in,” O’Brien added. “I remain in the loop in all departments regarding how employees are doing – who may need a little extra help in an area, and who might be ready for new challenges or deserve recognition.”
Having serviced Baird Industries, a company also owned by Abbas, for over three decades, CITY was introduced to the Threads software four years ago and was one of Threads, Inc.’s first clients.
“The best leaders realize that culture needs attention from them,” Abbas said. “Every company experiences the problems that Threads addresses at certain points in the life cycle. Colin was interested in what he could do. Threads helps him do what he already knows how to do.”
“I feel culture is always a work in progress,” Wetlaufer said. “It’s something you always need to be talking about, and Threads allows us to communicate better and have really good discussions.”