Workplace culture is something that can be hard to describe, but you know when it is not there. With changes to the modern work environment over the last few years, workplace culture has never been more important, especially with many working from home or hybrid working. You don’t want your outdated processes to hold you back and breed poor workplace culture. Today we are going to discuss some factors that can build good workplace culture and ideas that you can implement in your own office.
If you are ready for a change, then read on to get inspired!
Workplace coffee machines and beans
There is no better way to show your employees that you care than by supplying great workplace coffee machines and beans. This not only saves them the money they would spend on coffee, but it allows for socialising at the coffee machine and prompts a culture of collaboration. You want to be getting quality beans so the coffee tastes great, and provide all types of milk (cows milk, soy milk, almond milk, oat milk) so that all dietaries are catered to. Maybe you can send around a survey to learn what kinds of milk are preferred.
You can also put some tables and chairs, or even barstools next to the coffee machine to help that incidental communication along. Try your best to replicate a cafe look and feel! Imagine the impact this presentation will have on people interviewing in your office.
Office cubicles really were designed in another era. These days, you want to collaborate easily and frequently with your team, and an old-school office layout is going to hinder that desire. Take some time to optimise your office layout so that it is an open plan and departments can work together, while also being open to other department collaboration. Now, the idea is not to just make a noisy space where people can’t take calls or do quiet work. You might prefer to create break-out spaces by adding acoustic office screens where meetings can take place to keep the office area quieter.
The best way to deliver something that your staff really want is to just ask them outright! See how they prefer to work and begin planning an office layout accordingly.
Celebrate the wins and support the losses
Does your business do a good job of celebrating the wins? This is such an important part of office culture, and it can be de-prioritised when times get busy and a high standard of work becomes the norm. Your employees will be more engaged in the growth of the company if they know they are being recognised, and they are less likely to leave if they feel reinforced in their decisions and actions at work.
The other side to this is also supporting employees when things don’t go according to plan in the business. Perhaps a deal fell through, new competitors entered the market, or even a few resignations from your core staff. You really want to be there for your team and ensure that the workplace culture is intact, and supports losses.
Employee engagement surveys are a great way to get a pulse check on how your team are feeling. They are often rolled out where there has been significant management change or mergers, but there is no reason why they cannot be used more frequently. Often there can be problems that employees do not wish to share with their managers, and so the survey is an effective way of extracting that information as it is anonymous.
We would all agree that providing feedback anonymously can be quite cathartic, so it is important that these points are followed up and change is implemented. Otherwise, you are simply running a survey to hear the struggles of your team, only to turn a blind eye.
Who doesn’t love a perk? If you are a business that cannot change your salaries too much to acquire top talent, then offering work perks can be a suitable alternative. The beauty of this is that most workplaces have something to offer – salary sacrificing, parking and discounted services. If these are not things you can offer, then you can also extend perks to things like fruit box subscriptions and other things that improve workplace culture.
Don’t get swept up in the pressure of salary matching, especially if you can’t afford it. Focus on the value adds that you can accomplish and provide your employees with the work perks they are looking for. Word of mouth is a great tool, and you want to be known for the right things!
Did any of these workplace culture ideas surprise you? Are there any factors you have already implemented in your workplace, and how are they going? There is always room for improvement and be sure to test your changes along the way so you can refine as you go.
Article by Born Realist