Do you know the certification " Great Place To Work ", in French "les entreprises où il fait bon de travailler"? This is an award given by the company Best Workplaces, which can be translated as "The best workplaces". This label aims to recognize companies that combine good working conditions with a healthy environment.
What if we told you that the well-being of your teams is a pillar of your company's success?
Working on the culture of your company is a development lever. It allows the development of customer loyalty, improves the daily functioning of your company, the improvement of your teams...
What is corporate culture?
Widely used today, the term corporate culture is a set of values, behaviours and habits that define a company. Beyond technical characteristics such as work schedules or guidelines, it is above all a philosophy of operation.
- The company's values: they are the company's identity. Based on moral, human or societal principles, they help to unite, reassure, build loyalty and develop the company;
- Rites: actions that make the company's values concrete. They are those habits that allow each person in the team to feel like a player in the company (way of dressing, speaking, seminars, meetings, regular team building events...);
- The management style: persuasive, participative, delegative... Management reflects your corporate vision. Thus, a participative management style encourages the involvement of everyone in the decision-making process, while a delegative management style limits the involvement of the manager and favours the consultation of the teams in the decisions;
- There are other major points to consider: the history of the company or its vision for example.
For the corporate culture to become a vector of identity, it is important that these elements be shared by all employees and managers. It must be supported by common convictions.
Although the values emanate from the founders, they are the pillars of everyone in the company. By working on the values of the company, and thus on culture, you will have the opportunity to federate each employee, associate, customer or partner. Thus becoming the standards of your values.
We must not forget that corporate culture is a vector of internal and external communication. It allows you to differentiate yourself from your competitors, to put forward your beliefs, ambitions and objectives.
Having a strong corporate culture means making it concrete by letting employees and customers become imbued with it. Defining your corporate culture in concrete terms not only allows all your stakeholders to identify with it, but also simplifies the work of your company. By defining its expectations, its needs, its values, it is easier to know how and when to take a major decision for its company.
The keys to initiating your corporate culture
Corporate culture is explicit work, so that everyone can imbibe it and spread it. But it is also an implicit work, since many rites and ideas can be carried informally.
It may therefore be important to formalise them at some stage in order to standardise communication and facilitate the integration of new recruits. This is a long-term task that needs to be adjusted over time.
And if we talk about formalizing culture at a given moment, it is also because there are stages in the creation of this identity.
At the base of your work to create a corporate culture is the introspection phase. Good questions will help to identify your own values: What issues are important to you? How are decisions made? How can you make your team's work more enjoyable?
Values, Mission, Vision
These questions will allow you to define three key aspects of your business:
- Its values, completed with their definition to facilitate understanding;
- Its mission, to explain what you bring to your customers and partners today;
- His vision, to express your will at 5 years.
These three tools will also allow you to define your raison d'être: the role your company wishes to play in society in the years to come.
Premises and rituals
Corporate culture is also an environmental issue. How can you claim to be "green" while integrating your company between a factory discharging its chemicals into the river and a coal-fired power plant? Creating an environment that is in line with your values means taking into account each of your definitions.
It is a question of transforming the offices. Sit-stand desks to avoid back pain and to encourage movement between teams if collaboration and health are strong values. Creative areas with tables, ideas and plants if you want to emphasize your ability to create an environment of ideation. This is not limited to spaces: taking the example of offices, it is possible to set up regular yoga sessions to improve the physical condition and limit back problems of your teams. Are you an international company? Train your teams in languages through collective and fun courses!
The culture suite
Your corporate culture will then permeate your entire world:
- creating a logo becomes a communication weapon: designed according to your values, it becomes the flag, it is claimed by your teams;
- Recruiting is simpler and finding the right person becomes obvious: candidates will imbibe your culture to show you their willingness and desire to be part of your adventure;
- leader is an obvious choice: goodbye to management and team management, hello to exchange, valorisation and full integration of everyone in the projects and objectives.
Many other changes are to be expected, but once you start working on your corporate culture, you can't stop. How can you not dream of a company where everyone feels involved? In charge? Where everyone can participate in decision-making, while keeping in mind the convictions shared by the team?
Corporate culture is not the solution to all your entrepreneurial and leadership woes. But it is a very powerful tool that can lead to a great opening towards empowered companies and teams.