What is Company Culture? And How Do You Improve it? With Employee Stories
Looking to learn more about company culture, how to improve it, and how employee stories help? We got your back.
During this time of what’s being coined as The Great Resignation, companies across the world in all industries are struggling to attract and retain candidates. A recent study shows that 1 in 4 workers quit their jobs this year in the U.S. From talent acquisition managers, recruiters, to employee engagement specialists - everybody is struggling to answer a few big question: Why are employees leaving? What will motivate them to stay? How do we find people who will connect with our values?
There have been many articles hypothesizing the answer to this query. However, Inc Magazine, BBC, and CIO all suggest that in addition to reasons such as burnout and flexibility, company culture (linked to a lack of employee engagement and difficult managers) is a key factor.
So, what is company culture and better yet, what is a good company culture?
According to Investopedia, company culture (or corporate culture) “refers to the beliefs and behaviors that determine how a company's employees and management interact and handle outside business transactions” (Investopedia). In other words, it’s just not whether a company has ping pong tables and free coffee available, it’s about if a company really walks the talk on their values, treats employees with respect and dignity, and fosters a workplace environment based on an ideology.
Creating a good company culture is what every company is striving for now more than ever. It’s where employees feel seen and heard, feel cared for and appreciated, where communication is prioritized, and success is rewarded. This is in contrast to workplaces with negative culture’s brimming with cliquiness, distrust, gossip, etc. Let’s say your workplace has some negative and some positive aspects to its culture but you know that in order to get better GlassDoor ratings, hire more candidates, and grow your business - you need to make improvements.
If you Google search, “how to make a better company culture” suggestions, such as in this Forbes article by Alan Kohll titled, “How to Build A Positive Company Culture,” will include actions like encouraging positivity, fostering social connections, and better active listening. Guess how you can incorporate all of these actions plus increase engagement and diversity in your recruiting? The answer: employee stories.
Employee stories are captured moments at work written by your employees. They can be big or small and include many others or one other person. In recent years, employee stories have become a key component in talent acquisition and recruitment marketing strategy. In this free, downloadable PDF, Rally Recruitment Marketing shares, “Employee stories can have just as much impact on internal recognition and culture as they can on external talent acquisition. The key of course is creating a system that continually invites fresh content” (Rally Recruitment Marketing). So, how can you easily devise a system to create fresh content?
When we built goodseeker.io we knew that it would be a powerful tool to help companies build and promote great culture by reinforcing company values. Beyond boosting culture and keeping teams engaged having culture content easily accessible is a big win for recruitment marketing.
Some of the things we learned from talking to growing companies without dedicated culture and recruitment marketing teams was that making it easy, centralization, approvals had to be part of a solution for employee stories. This is key to churning out fresh employee content for internal engagement and external marketing purposes. Any sustainable effort to collect employee stories, and testimonials for employees should consider these points.
TOP 3 FAVORITE COMPANY CULTURE PODCASTS
- Culture Building like a PRO - “The Culture Building like a PRO podcast is your on-demand resource for tips and tools on how to transform your company culture! This podcast helps small business owners & managers overcome common, real-life leadership challenges & create a company culture where employees do their best work because they want to... and not because they have to (Apple Podcasts)!"
- Culture Happens by Hubspot - “Culture Happens. So, why not build a culture people love?“-Dharmesh Shah, HubSpot’s Co-Founder. From allyship in the workplace to remote work, Culture Happens is a podcast where HubSpotters discuss the future of work and why and inclusive company culture matters (Apple Podcasts)."
- Culture Factor - “Welcome to Culture Factor, I’m your Host Holly Shannon. Our new season looks at creators, innovators, and entrepreneurs, why? Because the gig economy is emerging. Talent has gone to work for themselves. Whether furloughed or part of the great resignation, they have birthed the big idea and those 57 million Americans are contributing more than $1 trillion to the U.S. economy annually. This is what the new normal looks like. You now have a front row seat to creator culture and into the places where the magic is being made (Apple Podcasts)."
TOP 3 COMPANY CULTURE BOOKS
- The Culture Code by Daniel Coyle - “In The Culture Code, Daniel Coyle goes inside some of the world’s most successful organizations—including the U.S. Navy’s SEAL Team Six, IDEO, and the San Antonio Spurs—and reveals what makes them tick. He demystifies the culture-building process by identifying three key skills that generate cohesion and cooperation, and explains how diverse groups learn to function with a single mind (Amazon)."
- Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh - "In Delivering Happiness, Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh shares the different lessons he has learned in business and life, from starting a worm farm to running a pizza business, through LinkExchange, Zappos, and more. Fast-paced and down-to-earth, Delivering Happiness shows how a very different kind of corporate culture is a powerful model for achieving success-and how by concentrating on the happiness of those around you, you can dramatically increase your own. #1 New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller" (Amazon)."
- The Culture Blueprint by Robert Richman - “The Culture Blueprint is a systematic guide to building a company culture. This book is about fostering committed, enthusiastic employees. Distilling his years of experience teaching culture-building to companies like Google, P&G and Amazon, Robert Richman reveals: The Culture Blueprint includes: The complete Culture Toolkit to immediately upgrade your company culture How to make sure your culture attracts the right employees (and repulses the wrong ones) The Core Value Discovery Formula and how to use it to integrate your mission, vision, and values How to apply the 99% Rule to stop annoying your employees Why Unbreakable Rituals are the most underrated tool in your culture arsenal In order to thrive, companies must do more than satisfy their employees; they must create passionate ones. The Culture Blueprint will teach you how to develop a culture that does just that" (Amazon).
Having a good company culture can be a make or break reason why an employee decides to stay or go (queue “Should I Stay or Should I Go” by the Clash). We hope that this blog post has been a helpful resource to you to learn more about what company culture is and how employee stories are a powerful way to improve it. Looking for more resources on company culture? Or looking to learn more about GoodSeeker? Please get in touch with us as we’d love to chat.
We highly recommend you download Rally Recruitment Marketing’s How To Guide titled, “The Ultimate Guide to Building An Employee Stories Content Library” which contains a 12 step checklist to plan your content library strategy. Click here to get your copy.
Our talent and candidate engagement platform connects talent to culture, gives remote teams visibility, and helps employers show candidates what it’s like to work on their team. The original Employee Story Generator makes it extremely fast and easy to collect, manage, and share employee stories for recruitment marketing, culture building, engaging remote employees.
Easily bring employee ambassador and referral campaigns to life with stories and ensure that the content your capture also supports priorities like DE&I, activating your EVP, and improving the candidate experience. Every story is an extension of your career site and SEO juice for recruiting.