Organisational culture importance: benefits and examples

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 30 September 2022

Published 30 November 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Good organisational culture makes staff want to stay at a company or organisation. Companies invest time in creating a positive environment where employees feel like they can thrive. You may be wondering how companies enable and improve organisational culture in their workplaces. In this article, we discuss what organisational culture is, why it's important and how to enable it in your workplace.

Organisational culture importance

Organisational culture's importance cannot be overstated. This is because organisational culture shapes the way employees behave in their work environment. It may differ from one organisation to the other based on its mission, vision and values. A positive organisational culture is likely to reduce staff turnover because it can make them feel valued. Defining a company's values can also impact the hiring process, as it can help companies find professionals that can adapt to the company and thrive in a specific environment.

How to support a positive organisational culture

If you want to know how to support a positive organisational culture in your workplace, here are seven steps you can take:

1. Encourage feedback from employees

Encouraging feedback from employees is an excellent way to learn about their current state of mind. By making it anonymous, it can allow them to feel freer to express their concerns honestly. You can get more from employee feedback by asking specific questions to which you would like answers.

Example: Michael overhears some of his staff complaining about something at the back. When he walks in, they become quiet and try to excuse themselves. When Michael discovers that they are not willing to disclose the problem to him directly, he decides to introduce a feedback box the next day. By the end of the week, Michael sees that the box is full of anonymous feedback.

Related: Employee feedback examples

2. Pay attention to employees

As good as it is to encourage feedback, it's equally good to pay attention to it and implement changes where necessary. This can make employees feel like their concerns are valid and that the company cares for their well-being. When professionals feel like they matter to an organisation, it can encourage them to put more effort into it.

Example: In the suggestion box, one feedback was about how they did not like being suddenly called in for a shift they had not planned. Michael calls a meeting with the whole staff to discuss. It turns out that some of the employees had young children, and they had to seek babysitters to make it to their unexpected shifts. Michael assures them that he plans on hiring more part-time staff to prevent it from happening again.

Related: Tips to improve the manager-employee relationship

3. Encourage collaboration

By encouraging collaboration among employees, you can help build a better relationship between them and make them more productive. Usually, this is more likely to happen when employees trust one another. An excellent way to build such trust is to introduce team working activities, especially outside the office.

Example: Whenever the organisation hires new employees, Wendy, who is the head of HR, takes them all out for a day to bond through various team working activities among each other. In the end, she makes the same speech about how she wants everyone to always feel comfortable asking for help from one another.

Related: Collaboration Skills: Definitions and Examples

4. Reward employees

When employees reach goals, it can benefit an organisation to recognise them through rewards. This can help increase an employee's self-esteem. The positive environment that it's likely to create can also help reduce staff turnover.

Example: Sonia recently introduced a rewards system in her organisation. She announced in the morning briefing that the employee who reaches the highest sales at the end of the month would receive the second prime parking spot for a month.

Related: Employee Incentives: What They Are And How To Use Them

5. Lead by example

When employees know that rules are not just for them, they can be more willing to follow them. An environment where even managers follow the rules can feel less hostile. This is likely to reduce the level of conflict and encourage friendliness.

Example: Sonia, who is the manager and has worked in the organisation for years, has always told her teammates that it's okay to ask for help from anyone. She's often asking for help from different members, even those who have just joined the organisation.

Related: 8 Strategies To Help You Lead by Example in the Workplace

6. Encourage fun at work

You can encourage fun at work by introducing light-hearted rituals or games to the organisation. This could make employees engage more with their work and with other members of the team. It's possible to do this through competitions or by encouraging employees to take breaks.

Example: Wendy thought it might be a good idea to encourage employees to dress in costumes to work for different holidays that fell on a workday.

Related: How To Boost Employee Morale in 6 Steps (Plus Tips)

7. Prioritise employee well-being

An organisation that prioritises its employees' well-being can attract and retain the right talent. People are less likely to put work before their mental health and give a lot of value to work-life balance. If they feel like the organisation values their mental health as much as they do, they're more likely to stay in the company and work towards a promotion instead of looking for jobs elsewhere. Besides, an employee who feels supported is more likely to be more productive.

Example: Wendy always keeps track of employees who have not taken any annual leave. She then calls these people into her office to discuss why they haven't. If it has been a while, she makes sure that they take one as soon as possible and always explains that it's important for their health.

Related: Creating a Healthy Corporate Culture

Benefits of good organisational culture

The reason why organisational culture is important is that it can lead to many benefits. Here is a list of some of them:

It can lead to improved staff retention

When employees feel appreciated in an organisation, it makes them less likely to leave. This is one of the reasons why it's essential for organisations to have a good culture. Organisations that encourage good culture recognise that their employees are their greatest assets.

It can improve productivity

Productivity is very likely to improve when employees feel motivated to work. Employees can feel motivated by different factors. For example, when employees feel acknowledged for their successes, they are more likely to keep putting in the effort. Moreover, they can keep the same level of motivation if they know the company prioritises their well-being.

It can improve an organisation's identity

Sometimes when an organisation has a unique culture, it can end up on the news. This is because employees are always willing to share why they love to work in that company. Often, they share these experiences on social media, which is why they spread quickly.

It can improve customer satisfaction

An organisation with a good culture values all of its stakeholders, including customers. This can be evident in the extent to which these organisations are willing to go to solve a customer concern. Employees are likely to emulate this behaviour to customers when they receive it themselves. And when a customer feels appreciated, their level of satisfaction can rise.

It can improve relationships among employees

An organisation that has a good culture encourages collaboration with employees. This is likely to help foster good relationships among employees. The encouragement can help professionals working in the same team solve conflicts more efficiently.

It can lead to the growth of the company

An organisation that has inspired employees and customers is more likely to benefit from exponential growth. This is why organisations seek to develop and nurture a good culture. Organisations are more likely to grow when they attract high-value talent and when their customers make glowing referrals.

It can attract the high-value talent

When an organisation has a good culture, its reputation is likely to spread because of it. This can attract many professionals, especially if they feel they can thrive in the company. A company may benefit from it because it may be easier to convince high-value talent to join them.

It can make onboarding more effective

Because an organisation with good culture values its employees, it may be easier to onboard new hires. The transition for new employees can be more comfortable because the organisation is in sync, which helps make training and orientation go as planned. This allows new hires to immediately feel loyal to the organisation because of an evident sense of belonging.

Related: 9 organisational management jobs (plus salary information)

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