By Paul Binsfeld, president and founder of Company Nurse LLC
If you want to grow your company, you need to not only examine the satisfaction of your external customers, but also that of your internal customers — your team members.
It’s no surprise that happy employees are more likely to be high-performing employees. Happy employees are excited to come to work, strive to perform to the best of their abilities, and want to take care of your company.
So, how do you create a team of happy employees? With a great culture. A culture that your team members feel confident and appreciated in. A culture that your team members feel a part of. A culture that your team actually likes.
Yes, this is easier said than done, but by putting in place a few key practices, you’ll have the building blocks you need to develop a positive culture and grow your company.
Below are the best practices that I’ve adopted over the years for my own organization, Company Nurse, and the results I’ve experienced. Read on to learn how to grow a company with culture:
Build Confidence in Your Team Members
Confident employees are productive employees. When your team members have confidence in their abilities, they can trust themselves to make decisions, getting things done and helping to grow your organization.
An important part of creating such an environment is developing clearly defined processes. When employees understand procedures and what to do in a variety of important situations, they are prepared to make decisions. And if an employee comes across an unfamiliar situation and makes an incorrect decision — don’t punish them. They’ll likely be too afraid to make a decision again. Instead, applaud them for taking initiative and explain how the process should work next time they are in that situation.
By showing team members appreciation for taking charge and for the results of their decisions, they will continue to develop into a more productive team.
Make Your Team Members Feel Like a Team
Makes sense, doesn’t it? Your company’s team members should feel like they are on an actual team. By building camaraderie and respect between your team members, you will motivate them to work toward your organization’s success.
And while standard team-building events and games can be fun, true team building takes constant work.
Make sure to have consistent, standing department meetings so that your team members work together toward their shared goals. This will help to prevent your members from working in silos and identify opportunities for team members to work together on projects.
On an organizational level, regularly share your company’s vision and the progress of that vision so that all team members understand they are working toward a bigger purpose. That’s why it’s important to also share how each department contributes to this vision.
When you provide each team member with purpose and reason to work toward that purpose, you are positioning your organization for growth.
Develop an Authentic Set of Core Values
A key part of building your organization’s culture is developing a set of core values.
Keep in mind, a generic, “cut-and-paste” set of core values isn’t going to cut it— your employees want a set of core values that is authentic to them and your organization. Ensure that these core values accurately reflect your organization by asking your team members what they think these should be.
When my team and I redefined Company Nurse’s core values in 2016, we looked at the everyday actions of our team and the components of our culture that people loved the most; that made them want to come to work and help the organization succeed. What we got was a set of core values that our team members fully embrace not only in their day-to-day activities but in their long-term goals as well.
Create Communication Channels
Another vital component of your culture’s health is keeping an authentic, open flow of communication. Your team members need to understand what is happening in your organization and to communicate their experiences, suggestions, and ideas.
At Company Nurse, we send out consistent updates through weekly and monthly internal publications. These keep our team informed on what’s happening in each department and celebrate our successes — recognizing individuals, teams, and our organization as a whole.
In return, team members provide their input through commenting on these internal publications, by using the anonymous employee feedback tool, TINYpulse, or simply by telling their supervisor. With a variety of channels, team members can communicate in the way they are most comfortable.
Finally, you must remember to acknowledge and address your team’s feedback and thank them for communicating to you. If employees don’t feel like their voice is truly being heard through these communication channels, they may become upset and your communication strategy could backfire.
By truly listening and responding to your team members, you encourage a culture of open and honest communication.
In embracing these best practices, Company Nurse has developed an award-winning culture that attracts and retains talented team members, invested in the organization and its growth.
These happy and productive team members exceed the industry’s service standards, differentiating Company Nurse as the best-in-class service — a reputation that has led to double-digit growth.
To become an industry leader, you first and foremost must become a culture leader.
If you’re looking to develop your culture with employee benefits, call Company Nurse first. As the premier nurse triage service for workplace injuries, we continue to perfect the process, taking care of employees, helping workplaces be more productive, and making businesses more profitable. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.