10 Ways Small Businesses Can Improve Company Culture

Nov 26, 2018
| The Extensis Team
How small employers can improve company culture

An important aspect of successful companies today can often be overlooked by small employers and their owners – the vital role of company culture.

All businesses have their own unique company culture. However, whether it is one that fosters happiness, engagement, productivity, and ultimately success depends on how the organization approaches and builds their culture over time.

Even the largest, most popular companies continuously look for ways to improve their culture to keep current employees happy while making the organization more attractive to potential job candidates.

Small businesses, too, can take certain actions to improve the culture of their organization. Here are 10 examples that can help boost your company culture!

1) Be Transparent

One thing that can easily harm a company culture is when the organization and its leaders aren’t open with their employees.

Whether a project or company goal is a complete success or misses the desired outcomes, being transparent with the workforce and explaining what happened lets employees know that their company isn’t trying to keep things from them.

This helps foster an open company culture that helps boost happiness and engagement.

2) Support the Community and Employee Causes

More and more businesses today are taking an active role in their communities and doing so helps improve a company’s culture.

Additionally, businesses are taking up the charitable causes that are important to their employees, helping to raise awareness and money.

Even small businesses are able to host or sponsor fundraising events that benefit a local charity or non-profit organization that is important to employees.

Don’t underestimate how important community involvement and charitable causes are to a great company culture.

3) Seek Employee Feedback and Take Action

Employees want to (and should) play a crucial role in creating the culture of their company. One-way leaders can make this a reality is be asking their workforce for their feedback and recommendations, and then taking actions to implement or address things that meet their concerns.

Doing so is a fantastic way to ensure that the company culture meets the wants and needs of employees, as all workplace cultures are unique.

Additionally, when employees know their voices and concerns matter, it makes them more vested in the business and its success.

4) Company and Team Outings

Small business owners shouldn’t undervalue the role team outings can have on not just company culture, but also employee morale.

Events such as team lunches, company picnics, holiday parties, birthday gatherings, and company milestone celebrations are all incredibly valuable for employers large and small.

They also help instill a sense of teamwork and help employees get to know their co-workers, which helps to build a healthy, positive workplace culture.

5) Build Teamwork and Engagement

This tip aligns closely with the previous two and is just as important in creating a great company culture. Even the smallest of businesses require employees to work together as a team to achieve certain goals and objectives.

One way to encourage teamwork is by making employee engagement a priority throughout the company. Whether it’s asking for feedback or encouraging employees to bring their ideas forward, engaged employees are vital to a successful team, business, and company culture!

6) Invest in Benefits and Office Perks

The last several years have seen benefits and office perks play a greater role in employee happiness and company culture. Benefits are also an area where smaller employers can struggle due to the costs that are often associated with them.

However, exploring ways to offer improved benefits (such as working with a PEO) and add new workplace perks can have positive impacts on workplace culture.

Here are a few office perks that can help boost employee morale:
  • Free snacks and coffee
  • Relaxation rooms
  • Modern office layouts
  • Flexible work schedules
  • Wellness programs
  • Learning and development programs
  • Summer Fridays

7) Reward Employees for Their Performance

Employee recognition is an important aspect of a company’s culture. Businesses that fail to do so risk losing their workers which can be costly for smaller employers.

Instead, business leaders should create an employee rewards system that highlights employees who are performing at a high-level as well as giving them something for their efforts.

These rewards can be a bonus, an extra PTO day, gift cards, or a wide-variety of other things that show employees you value them and their work.

Employee rewards and recognitions are a fantastic way for smaller employers to build a best-in-class workplace culture.

8) Help Employees Avoid Burnouts

Employees in businesses of all sizes face workloads, projects, and deadlines that can cause stress. However, too much stress can cause serious mental and physical health issues for employees, in addition to negatively impacting productivity.

These are why employers need to take actions to help their employees manage stress and avoid burnouts. When employers show empathy, employees see that their company truly cares about their wellbeing which helps to boost morale, loyalty, and build a great culture.

9) Get Employees Involved

A great way for small business owners to get their employees excited is to get them more involved with various aspects of the company.

This doesn’t mean giving staff more work to do, but instead enabling them to assist with initiatives that help with business growth and company culture. One example is asking employees to participate in recruiting and employer branding efforts such as testimonials and employee spotlights.

You can also encourage employees to be active in team building activities that help employees get to know one another.

When employees are actively involved in various company programs, it helps to improve the culture of the organization and turn it into one that is driven by employee engagement.

10) Stay True to the Core Values of the Business

Changing and improving a company culture is a strategic project where the results won’t be seen overnight. It takes time and effort from all levels of a business.

Given the scope involved, it’s important for leaders to not forget the core values and missions of the business when exploring ways to enhance the current culture of the organization.

All businesses have things that make them unique, and these can help be the foundation of a great company culture.

By aligning business values with the company culture, leaders can take a step in the right direction with setting employees and their company up for success.

Always Explore Ways to Enhance Your Company Culture

The best way for business owners and leaders to have a great company culture is to continuously monitor it and find areas that can be improved.

Company culture plays a critical role in employee retention and recruitment, which are the backbone of any successful business!

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