You’re probably looking at this title and wondering why a marketing company is writing about company culture. After all, employee relations are the responsibility of Human Resources, right? Wrong. Your company culture sets the tone for the entire perception of your business, services and products. A positive company culture is the very basic foundation of marketing and a faulty foundation will leave your marketing strategy and business in shambles.
From small businesses to Fortune 500 corporations, the company culture you cultivate means everything. A positive workplace can improve employee retention and happy employees at that! Happy team members create higher customer satisfaction ratings. A toxic culture closes doors, not only to gaining long-term qualified employees but the doors to your business.
Cultivating your company culture into a positive environment isn’t necessarily difficult. It takes lockstep communications across the company, starting with your leadership, internal marketing to get buy in from your employees and consistency. Positive messages, incentives and clear understandings of expectations can go a long way in motivating and positioning employees for success.
People want to do business with companies that take care of their employees. Employees that are well taken of and feel appreciated become more than employees, they become advocates.
We’ve created some steps to help you cultivate a positive company culture that works for your employees and customers.
Spell Out (and Act on) Your Values. Companies looking to gain the trust of their workers and customers need concise branding that tells your story and connects with your core values. Too many businesses are stuck on coming up with the most clever, flashy marketing name or website. That flashy sign may look nice but investing in internal marketing results in real ROI. Starting a business that matters to people runs a little deeper than a pretty facade.
Invest in Your Internal Marketing and continually connecting and committing to accepting and using company input and making progressive changes. To do this, you must walk the fine line of business and pleasure. The best way to keep your neutral ground is through internal marketing and team building exercises.
Find Your Real Mission. What’s in your business’ heart? What do you stand for? Write this down in a mission statement and regularly make reference to it.
Practice what You Preach. If you’re selling healthful foods on the principle of better living, incorporate that mindset into your company culture. Set employees up with gym memberships or incentive programming that makes them want to improve their own lives.
The bottom line is that you must invest in creating an internal marketing strategy that builds your internal market and creates trust just as you do with new business development. If you invest in internal marketing to build a positive company culture the result will be a synchronization between your employees and customers that will lead to stronger loyalty.
Remind customers of your values. Don’t just vinyl your mission statement to the walls of your warehouse for only employees to see. Broadcast your values to your customers. Incorporate not only your logo on your packaging, but a core value as well. Back to our previous point, People want to do business with companies that hold good values and ethics.
Invest in Telling Your Story. Tell customers a story of how you put your values into practice. Have you made major contributions to a local charity? Sponsored a local T-ball team? Make a promotional video highlighting how you have verified your values and display it on your website or YouTube channel. Dedicate a Community and team page on your website to show your involvement in the areas you serve and highlight your company culture.
Customers will find solidarity with your company, especially if your values intersect with theirs.
Hire and train your staff accordingly. A mission statement is just that, without the support of your team: A statement. You can turn your mission statement into a living, breathing part of your business by hiring, training and supporting your personnel in a values-focused way. Creating a strong, well rounded on-boarding process can set the tone for all new employees.
Incorporate marketing tactics into your hiring practices in an effort to on-board the right people for the job. Too many times, the standard on-boarding process is overloaded with learning tasks and watching old videos. Set aside a few days to do meet and greets, a team welcome lunch, anything that can highlight more than the tasks of the job.
Use Your Marketing Skills. When hiring use the skill set your business uses for prospecting to find the right customers. Hiring managers sometimes fall into hiring the most skillfully qualified candidate while forgetting to take into account how the candidate will add to the company culture. Add questions to your job application that delve into the values of your candidates.
Conduct regular meetings to apprise your team of any upcoming values-related trainings or events. Praise your employees for any individual or team efforts that have aligned with your company values. And don’t be afraid to dole out discipline for actions that have went against them.
Following these basic steps can set you up for positive company culture. A positive company culture is the foundation of good marketing.
By focusing on your company’s responsibility in the larger community instead of honing in solely on the bottom line, you can create a culture that extends through the front door of your business. Relationships with both existing and prospective customers will strengthen as you find common ground on what you stand for.
Share your own ideas for how you have kept your company culture clicking!
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