According to employees in the Denver area – it’s all about an employee friendly work culture. Companies that encourage teamwork and employee-friendly work cultures see greater productivity and employee loyalty.
The Denver Post recently published the results of their second annual Top Workplaces program. Collecting 32,000 employee surveys from 183 employers in the Denver area, employers were scored in areas such as employee confidence in senior leadership, appreciation of workers, company direction, workplace values and ethics, encouragement of ideas, competence of management, and pay and benefits.
After staff tallied employee responses, the Denver Post staff found the most common characteristic among successful and best companies to work for was a friendly work environment. Many of the participating employers recognize that the right workplace environment is necessary for attracting and retaining the right talent and reaching company goals.
They’ve learned a simple formula – happy employees are productive employees. Your work culture determines whether the work environment fosters happiness, commitment and excellence, for example, or not.
Is the Denver region unique? Fortunately – no! From the Denver Top Workplaces program to ongoing Harvard Business Review (HBR) research, employees nationwide are actively seeking employee-friendly work cultures. Downsizing, unemployment, and corporate budget cuts have created a workplace of hostility and poor employee morale. But many employers are turning the tide by creating a work environment where employees want to come to work and be a part of the company’s success.
How do companies build a positive, engaged, and employee friendly work culture to sustain their success? These seven tips will help an organization succeed.
- Recognize employees as your champions – As I state in my audio training program, Engaging Employees to Champion Change, “if you want more civility, recognize people who went beyond the call of duty to be kind and helpful to someone in another department. If you want quality, recognize the rock star teams that achieve it and then tell stories about it to every new hire.” A company’s employees are the back bone of customer, vendor, and partner interaction. Without clients and customers, successful companies realize they will soon be out of business.
- Create an employee friendly work culture -Why not do something special for employees that strengthen teamwork and cohesion while increasing your bottom line. Team building activities and team games are a great way to build trust among employees and their managers. They discover team and organizational strengths and weaknesses and address them in a non-threatening atmosphere.
- Create the sense of community and belonging – Belonging separates companies like those on the “Forbes Best Companies to Work For” list from those with high employee turnover. “When leaders nurture belonging in their work culture, their leadership practices and in their systems, success is the inevitable outcome. Employees are engaged. They are loyal. And, people step forward to accomplish extraordinary things through collaboration and team work. Time and time again over two decades, TIGERS Success Series has helped leaders build teams of committed, loyal, and collaborative employees. Belonging is the foundation that launches high levels of engagement and productivity.”
- Build morale through storytelling – Humans are naturally wired for storytelling. From the dawn of ages, man has communicated through stories which have been passed down through generations. Legacies have been created through storytelling. Businesses that share stories of successful teamwork or an employee that went above and beyond the call of duty create the feeling of community. “Institutions that can communicate a compelling historical narrative often inspire a special kind of commitment among employees. It is this dedication that directly affects a company’s success and is critical to creating a strong corporate legacy,” said author Adam Galinsky, Morris and Alice Kaplan professor of ethics and decision in management.
- Hire the Right People – This goes without saying. Hiring prospective candidates that match your work culture and team environment strengthen your organization. Hire the wrong people and your well-oiled team may dissolve before your eyes. Dominating personalities, aggressive behavior, and “it’s all about me” attitude are not conducive to team behavior, creativity, or collaboration, which leads to the next point.
- Create a team culture where “we” and “us” are the norm – Modern work cultures have become “I” instead of “we” oriented. When executives incorporate the word “we” into their vocabulary, employees at all levels feel included and a part of the organization’s success. Michael A. Olguin, president of Formula PR adds, “When counseling clients, use terms like “we believe…” or “our recommendations include…. This eliminates an employee’s fear of standing alone and shows that the entire organization is thinking about.”
- Share individual and team successes with all employees – Go ahead, recognize and acknowledge employees! It’s good for employee morale and loyalty and goes hand in hand with my previous bullet point of making employees feel like they “belong.” Innovative ways of recognizing employees include time off with pay, a sincere word of thank you, pizza parties, longer lunch hour, and gift certificates to their favorite coffee shop, etc.
Copyright TIGERS Success Series by Dianne Crampton
Business coaches and training consultants looking for proven resources to create success and a work friendly workplace, consider certification as a licensed TIGERS facilitator. I am looking for dynamic business coaches, internal and external trainers, facilitators, educators, and leadership consultants who are searching for proven resources and solutions to take their organization or consulting business to the next level. With opportunities to “brainstorm” with like-minded thought leaders, utilize the proven TIGERS Team Wheel and an arsenal of team-building resource tools, the “royalty free” TIGERS Facilitation Certification is the solution for the right candidates. Use proven, research-based resources and assessment tools that reveal behavioral issues, sources of conflict, skill sets, strengths, and weaknesses within a team or organization. If you are a consultant or trainer and fit this scenario, I would like to hear from you.
TIGERS Success Series is a team development consultancy based on 6 core principles that anchor high performance team dynamics. These principles are trust, interdependence, genuineness, empathy, risk and success. TIGERS offers licensing and certification to team building trainers and consultants interested in expanding their practice to serve organizational leaders from the break room to the boardroom. Learn more.