To us, the culture in our business is the most important thing.
Happier and more engaged staff means better productivity. Happy, engaged staff will serve your customers better, go the extra mile when the need arises, and buy into your company’s direction. All of this adds up to a better bottom line.
A strong culture (to us) trumps higher pay rates. It’s simply not enough to pay staff above average and expect them to do an above average job. If your staff don’t feel any ownership over what they’re doing and believe in the direction your business is going, you’re not going to get the extra 10% performance out of them.
Some of the ingredients to a strong culture are:
Identifying why you’re in business
Getting your staff to understand why you’re in business (beyond just earning $$) will help them understand what you’re looking to achieve. If you’re all heading in the same direction you’ll get there quicker.
Be open with targets
We have clear turnover and sales targets we aim to hit every month. We share these targets with all staff. Sharing the targets means we can work together to create a plan to hit the targets, and let staff know how we’re progressing each month.
Yes, this means staff know our turnover numbers – at the end of the day there’s no real downside (most staff worth their salt can figure out what you earn anyway). Sharing means we hold each other accountable and are more likely to hit our targets.
Give staff the right tools
If your staff have old computers, unreliable equipment or cheap tools they’ll be less productive and get frustrated. This is an easy thing to fix and can have a big impact on culture.
Communicate and be authentic with what you’re saying
It’s important you tell staff exactly what’s expected of them. It’s also important to tell them how they’re tracking against those expectations. Openness breeds an environment where people trust the feedback you’re giving and negates any hidden agendas.
You’ve hired good staff. Trust them to make decisions. If you can’t trust them to do their job and make decisions you shouldn’t hire them.
Measure the things that count
Say you’ve been for a bike ride. Your app might tell you you’ve traveled 45 km at an average of 30km per hour, with a heart rate of 160 beats per minute. This information doesn’t make you any happier. You know whether you enjoyed the ride without all that information. Your staff know whether they’re enjoying their work without you overloading them with information. Make sure you’re only giving them the stats that are critical to them doing a good job.
All of these ingredients add up to better staff performance. This might come from higher productivity, better staff retention, improved customer service or lower absenteeism. All in all, your bottom line will thank you for improving your company culture.
Need a hand improving your culture? Feel free to contact us at [email protected] or call Hamish on 04 212 4977 for a no cost and no obligation chat.