May 13, 2021 BestCompaniesUSA

10 Elements of The Best Company Cultures

What is one element that makes a great company culture?

To help your company find new ways to improve your company culture, we asked HR professionals and business leaders this question for their best advice. From transparency to curiosity, there are several elements that may help you improve your company culture.

Here are ten elements that make a great company culture:

  • Transparency
  • Unique Values
  • Diversity
  • Camaraderie
  • Compassion
  • Great Managers
  • Core Values
  • Integrity
  • Curiosity
  • Appreciation

Transparency

One element that makes a company culture great is transparency. Here at TechnologyAdvice one of our core values is Be Transparent. To us, this means that every employee, no matter their level of experience, is honest and upfront on how things are going. We routinely have one-on-one meetings and team huddles to keep everyone on the same page to help eliminate any confusion or struggles they may have. During a team member’s first sixty days, we also have weekly career development meetings to set goals and learn how they would like their career to advance. This leads to every team member feeling valued and empowered to make necessary decisions!

Morgan Jipp, TechnologyAdvice

Unique Values

One way we keep culture strong is by living and breathing our “unique” values. They are not fancy words on a wall for us but ingrained in our communication and “bias for action” decision-making. By sharing our favorite values in morning meetings, or how we will show up and take “ownership” of the day, values are spoken about often. Our “strength in numbers” team supports each other when workloads shift, creating a close working relationship. We keep things “fresh and thrilling” by finding new ways to grow and develop, which keeps us producing excellent products.

Jenn Christie, Markitors

Diversity

Companies tend to focus strongly on the outcomes and forget about the source of their success: their employees. Giving people space to be human beings helps to build up a culture of openness. Make time and space for open conversations.

Edward Briggs, Home Reviews

Camaraderie

Camaraderie is the one thing that makes for great company culture. When people rally together, amazing things can happen. Having harmony amongst your teams keeps employees satisfied and energized about their role. People, the bonds they share, and the experiences they create leave impressions in meaningful and lasting ways. So much so that a sense of friendship can add greatly to the vibe and values felt at a company.

Tyler Butler, 11Eleven Consulting

Compassion

Company culture can be built on a million different values. Compassion is the one that I believe has the biggest overall impact on how a business grows and how customers and employees feel about the organization. Wikipedia says that: Compassion motivates people to go out of their way to help the physical, mental, or emotional pains of another and themselves. It seems pretty simple. In our jobs, regardless of industry, geography, or level of experience, if we go out of our way to help just one or two people (customers, co-workers, neighbors) every day, we can change the world!

Niki Ramirez, HRAnswers.org

Great Managers

Trustworthy, credible, and friendly managers can make or break the corporate culture. Managers with these traits and who lead by example can increase employee retention, improve overall workplace satisfaction and cause employees’ to more willingly recommend their company for employment through referrals. Also, when employees say managers are honest and ethical, they’re much more likely to want to work there for a long time and more likely to rate the workplace as above average or higher.

Ronald Kubitz, Forms+Surfaces

Core Values

Great company culture is one aspect of a company that a potential employee looks for when applying and what current employees want to stay engaged within the organization. One element that makes for a great company culture is a company’s Core Values. Core Values are the framework of an organization. They set the tone of who you are and how you accomplish your goals. For example, our core values include Family First, Own It, Got Your Back, and Honest Counsel. These core values define how our employees interact with one another and our clients.

Bryan Adelson, Red Clover

Integrity

The foundation of any great company culture is integrity. Integrity can be defined as doing the right thing even when no one is looking. The leaders of a company have to have integrity that is above reproach. Once the employees know that their leaders will always do the right thing, the employees will be more likely to follow. Next, respect is reciprocal and travels up and down the chain of command. Treat your people with respect always. Also, be willing to take input from subordinate employees and listen to their feedback. Lastly, train your people to succeed. As a leader, make certain your people have the proper tools, the proper training, and the proper mentoring.

Bobby Zavala, University of Dubuque LIFE Tempe AZ

Curiosity

Curiosity may have ‘killed the cat,’ but it’s a cornerstone of great leadership and great company culture. Why? By remaining curious, we check egos and assumptions at the door. We listen after asking productive questions. More people feel heard, seen, and respected. It’s now contagious and generates insights from those closest to the issues—not aloof management decisions or stale best practices from the past. The company that bakes curiosity into the cultural DNA instantly has a critical advantage that reinforces a great culture (a competitive advantage).

Jeff Dibble, People & Culture Leader

Appreciation

A great company culture exists when employees are appreciated for the value they bring and are trusted and empowered to do great work. When you hire talented people and give them an opportunity to shine, great things happen for the company and you have a strong and happy team!

Jeanne Kolpek, Cadence Education

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