Did you know that the global GDP contracted by 5.2-percent in 2020? Well, with the imposition of the pandemic, numerous companies and corporates have closed down. Hence, creating chaos in the business sector. However, regardless of the pandemic, some companies have still managed to stand proud and tall by catering to their workplace culture.
So, what exactly is workplace culture, and how do you protect it during a crisis? The workplace culture holds immense importance in the growth of a company. It is an organization’s personality that depicts the values and beliefs. And, during a crisis, the workplace culture can either break or level up the game for many companies.
Well, there is much more to workplace culture and its maintenance. Unravel all the details below!
Understanding Workplace Culture
In literal terms, culture refers to the traditions, customs, and ideas according to which a particular community behaves. Similarly, workplace culture signals the dos and don’ts of an office, company, or team. It is a collection of beliefs, norms, and values that everyone practices.
Perhaps, it would be better to term the workplace culture as the personality of the business. Some workplaces have a formal and highly-professional culture, whereas some have a casual, friendly one. However, culture retains great power as it guides and influences the work methods of one’s organization. Also, workplace culture seems to attract a similar audience.
For example, a small-scale pizza business with a ‘one big family’ workplace culture will attract mostly families. Meanwhile, a pizza corporate with formal workplace culture will mostly attract professionals and serious, business-like people.
You see, a workplace culture impacts one business in various ways. These include:
1. Behavior and Alignment
A defined workplace culture tells employees things to prioritize and how to behave. Doing so creates uniformity and aligns your organization. Hence, allowing you to set higher goals as well as achieve them.
2. Improve Results
According to one study, organized workplace cultures yielded increased revenue, profitability, employment, and growth. Fundamentally, it is because workplace cultures influence the employee’s desire to work and affect the input provided.
Healthy workplace cultures motivate employees to work efficiently and happily. Thus, increasing the effort input and boosting revenue. Contrarily, undefined, and toxic workplace cultures have adverse effects.
Formation of Workplace Culture
In case you haven’t formed a workplace culture yet, know it is never too late to form one. Here are the details of the two fundamental stages of workplace culture.
Perhaps, the initial step to forming a workplace culture is to identify what you think of your company or what do you want it to be. Outline your organization’s goals and objectives. Do you prefer a formal atmosphere or a casual one? According to the University of Michigan, there are four fundamental types of workplace culture. These include:
The clan revolves around teamwork, where the leader seems to be mentoring the workforce. Usually, clan workplace cultures appear to be like a family. The team members are casual and open about their challenges as well as victories.
This particular workplace culture gets driven by innovation and risks. Authorities and employees focus on creating exceptional products and services. Adhocracy-based organizations have rigid and inflexible rules. Usually, technology firms have such a workplace culture.
Profitability and market share are the fundamental objectives of market organizational cultures. It emphasizes identifying competition, beating all the rivals, and achieving results.
The hierarchy focuses on the stability and control of the organization. It values efficiency and coordination. Usually, this workplace culture is present in governmental organizations.
Well, considering the above types, your workplace culture can either identify as one of these or be a blend of some. Remember, your company culture is unique and based on your company’s values.
You cannot simply impose a workplace culture. Instead, your company’s ideology, rules, practices, recruitment criteria, and activities must promote the growth of the values amongst employees.
For example, if you are recruiting staff, then it is important to ensure like-minded people are entering your organization through the recruitment criteria. If your company values innovation and leadership, then you must ask questions that evaluate the presence of these values in the candidate during an interview. However, remember not to hire a team with the same skill sets. A diversity of talent will be helpful for the company.
Protecting it during a Crisis
Workplace culture is an ever-changing phenomenon that takes time and effort to form. With every new recruitment or policy, authoritative bodies are ensuring that the company’s culture remains intact and undisturbed.
However, in times of crisis, it is the workplace culture that gets tested the most. The crisis can be anything from a natural disaster to an unrecoverable loss in business. During a crisis, the only valuable thing that organizations have is their culture, their character. And, it is of immense importance to protect it. But how? Let’s unravel it below!
• Leader & Communication
The team leader must execute his responsibilities by reminding the workforce about the company’s missions and how the employees contribute to it. Recognizing the employee’s efforts can help boost their motivation and work efficiency. He must reinforce the values of the organization by communicating about it.
• Encouragement & Support
Your employees are likely to feel devastated at such times. However, the organization must play its role by offering moral support and encouragement. You can recognize and reward employees that are role models. Plus, arrange resources for them to cope up with the increased workload. You can also include recreational activities or breaks to ensure the well-being of your employees.
Workplace Culture & the Pandemic
The pandemic brought a 360-degree flip to several company cultures. And that surely wasn’t a good sign.
It takes ages for a company to develop a strong & relevant culture that fuels its productivity and maintains a stable employee retention rate. Any change in this could mean a disbalance. Thus, yielding unfavorable outcomes for the company and troubling its productivity.
However, before these changes could cause much damage to the workplace culture, we saw executives working ceaselessly to restore their valued company culture using the following approaches:
Upgrading digital capabilities
Since remote work greatly disrupts the smooth workflow, apps and programs like Slack, MS Teams, and Trello became common amongst fresh remote workers. The use of these apps keeps the teams connected at all desired times and allows authorities to conveniently manage & monitor the progress. The employees can report their entrance and exit timings and also communicate their issues and suggestions with colleagues.
Make Communication Efficient
When teams do not meet in person, the work doesn’t feel real. And hence, people are unable to invest the same amount of input that they usually would.
For this very reason, video calls and conferences are also an essential part of remote working. They allow teams to keep the connection between one another alive and healthy. Plus, one cannot discuss every topic over chat. A few subjects require verbal talk and explanation. So, for maintaining their routine of meetings, business teams can use Zoom and other such apps.
Offer Moral & Emotional Support
Reward them with mini bonuses or even appreciation whenever you possibly can, and also give them the ear of a friend if need be. You can also offer your employees financial and medical support such as the much-appreciated Medicare supplement plans 2021. Remember, the good you come back to you. So, whatever you do for them, won’t go in vain.
You Got This!
A crisis can befall any business at any time. But, when it does, please do not panic. Instead, concentrate on the position your company stands in and how you can make it better. Evaluate whether your workplace culture is doing fine in surviving the crisis or requires some changes.
You see, a happier and healthier office environment will automatically yield better results. Indeed, happiness is subjective. However, people sharing similar objectives, values, and practices increase the chances of success as well as survival in times of crisis.
The workplace culture is the bonding force, an unseen foundation of your business. And, when a crisis befalls, know that you can handle it.