Did you know that ‘corporate culture’ is often the ultimate deciding factor when employees are considering competing job offers?
In order to stay ahead of the competition, businesses need to hire and retain the best minds in their industry. Because talented, sought-after employees are also able to pick and choose where they will be spending their working hours, companies need to offer more than good salaries and competitive benefits.
Analyst Josh Bersin recently declared “The war for talent is over, and the talent won.” He has claimed that high-performing employees are taking control, able to cherry pick positions they like, according to a range of company differentiators.
And the ‘corporate culture’ is often the ultimate deciding factor when employees are considering competing job offers.
Understanding what company culture is and how it relates to your business is the key to attracting and retaining top talent. Potential employees will ask about salary, benefits and leave allowances, yes, but they’ll also be checking out the management style, the office layout, the team diversity and much more.
If they like what they see, they’ll likely sign on the dotted line. If they don’t, or if the culture isn’t clear, they will most likely hesitate and take another look at a competing job offer. Defining, therefore, and carrying through the culture, is vitally important.
So are you, as a manager, able to define your company’s culture? Where do you begin? It’s true that many companies don't even know they already have a culture, often because top management has never really thought about it, or because the culture was just organically shaped around the top managers, founders or strongest personalities in the company.
By taking the time to sit down and analyse the culture, you’ll gain many insights into your existing employees' mindsets, attitudes and values. With this information managers will be able to change, promote and further define the company culture, until it conforms to the company vision and values. By identifying language, assumptions, beliefs, and habits perpetuated by employees, managers can identify and control the core company culture.
Company culture is powerful: underestimate it at your peril. Instead take control and form the type of culture which attracts top talented people, and retains your best employees. A good company culture will engender loyalty and pride among employees. And we don’t need to tell you why this is good for business.
Every company will have a different type of culture, but the vision, mission and values defined by top management must be clear and concise enough to allow employees to best understand the business’ focus, and understand their expected contributions to achieving these goals.
This is known as employee branding, and is the process of defining and then promoting and marketing the chosen culture. Your company HR will play a critical role in defining and enforcing the right culture but it is up to you, as a manager and a leader, to help your company to ensure and maintain the required culture.
Employees look to management for guidance, for approval and for role models, so lead from the front by embodying the company’s cultural ideals. By ensuring that you represent the chosen employer brand, you will become a figurehead of the culture, allowing your employees to more easily live the brand themselves.
Provided the culture created is a positive and attractive one, your employees will attract like-minded peers to your company, creating a growing awareness of your company’s culture and ensuring your name as an employer of choice among top professionals.