A company is a culture. As a leader or owner of a company, you help create that culture. Huge businesses like Amazon, Apple, Google, Facebook and Microsoft have brands that define a culture, and cultures that define their brands.
So how have these companies fared so well in creating a culture that promotes hard work, an emotional bond with co-workers and product, as well as new and innovative ideas? Here are some ways you can do the same for your business.
Your businesses location will, of course, affect the type of people it attracts. Cities are melting pots of creativity, innovation and ambition. Those creative types you seek for your company are also commonly social as well. Many brilliant minds seek social interactions for reasoned discussion about ideas and current projects. Promote these social connections with common areas such as kitchens or common rooms.
Sometimes the preparation of a pot of coffee and simple small talk is just what a stuck project manager needs. It can clear her head, refresh her ideas and set her back on the right track.
Another space that can increase productivity and lend a relaxed vibe is an outside courtyard. Plants and fresh air add freedom in a space that can feel oppressive during a deadline.
Collaborate on Workspace Change
Get employee input before making changes in a workplace. Although you and the higher-ups can promote a culture, the employees create it. No matter how much upper management thinks it knows about the company’s culture, before a workplace remodel, redesign or even a move of company premises, consider employees’ ideas. Upper management gets a look at what the company has done well for employees, and employees feel as though their ideas are valued and that they are considered essential to the life of the company.
State Your Goals
Culture starts with people, the right people. Be honest about the company’s goals, services and jobs. Attract people who feel that your business is a place they would be proud to be a part of. Hire employees who are also quality spokespersons for the company. Illustrate, like LifeLock does, that joining your company means each person becomes a part of something larger than themselves. Workers who feel like they make a difference in the world are productive and happy.
Add a Game Room
This may sound counterproductive — but a workplace game room can increase productivity. A ping-pong or foosball table encourages and promotes relaxation and relieves stress. Games foster team bonding, shared experiences and fun interaction between coworkers, creating a team mentality.
Studies show that the occasional game or play experience, as part of the workplace, can increase confidence when an employee suggests a new, bold idea. Also, employees are more accepting of other employees’ ideas.
The atmosphere a game room creates can also cut down on absences from work. When employees enjoy their workspace, they’re less likely to call in sick for a minor headache or stomach cramps.
With the addition of a game room, employees not only strengthen social bonds, but they also know the company isn’t concerned only with profit. A company that cares for its employees’ mental, emotional and physical health is a company where many will desire to work.