A company’s culture is what defines it, far more than its quarterly report. One of the best ways to attract future employees and customers is by creating a vibrant workplace culture writes Rohan Bhansali, Co-Founder, Gozoop.
An organisation isn’t just a brick and mortar edifice or a menu of products and services for clients to choose from. It is a teeming organism with a life of its own. When faced with undue stress or harsh conditions, this organism might turn susceptible to a host of diseases, conversely in the right environment it can thrive unhindered.
It is imperative for us to think of employees as the cells of an organisation. They are its heart, soul and very being. Why is it then that most organisations choose to prioritise processes over people?
Some of the most meaningful long term benefits in business come from making a conscious effort to create a cohesive culture that resonates with employees and taking consistent steps to do so.
Culture doesn’t take care of itself
An organization is successful when its employees are happy and motivated. You need a dedicated team to ensure that everyone finds joy and meaning in what they do. This team will not only take care of your vision, mission and core values but also make sure there’s always something that employees look forward to. The Human Resources team shouldn’t just be restricted to hiring processes and exit policies. They should be the backbone of the organisation and steer it in the right direction, from finding the right people to organising the right activities.
Employees that love coming in to work and find happiness at the workplace are far more reluctant to leave. A lower attrition rate is one of the most valuable ROIs of culture and one that every organisation should aim for.
Culture begins from the hiring process
It’s easy to teach someone processes and technical know-how, but it’s extremely difficult to imbue them with loyalty, integrity and honesty. These values are mostly self-driven. For this, it’s important to start from the very beginning, conduct a ‘cultural fit’ interview to determine whether you’re just hiring talent or talent along with character. There will be times when you have to let go of people who don’t resonate your core values. But, those who do fit in, should be constantly motivated and appreciated.
If a leader notices a drop in an employee’s performance, don’t just issue warning after warning. Try getting to the heart of the matter. This not only enables you to hold on to a valuable employee, but also demonstrates that the organisation is as invested in him as he is with them.
Once you get the company culture right, everything will automatically fall into place. The most indirect ROI of culture at the workplace is that it allows organisations to find the right kind of talent and employ top management personnel that enable the company to grow meaningfully.
Success is always around the corner when you find meaning in your work
Organizations should focus on creating opportunities, challenges and an environment that employees find difficult to leave. The world of advertising is relatively small in India, which is one of the reasons why most companies prioritize clients over employees. Although we are a start-up, we didn’t follow this, instead we did the complete opposite and the results were overwhelming.
When employees are passionate about what they do, the results will automatically reflect it. Outstanding work and brilliant performances come from employees who find meaning in their work. This is of course the most important but underestimated ROI of culture at the workplace.
Once productivity and quality of work are on the rise, they are reflected by other key performance indicators: profit per employee, client retention and revenue per client. An increase in these statistics is seen when employees take ownership of their work and feel responsible for success and failure alike. You might find that creating a cohesive workplace culture might motivate your employees far more and yield exceptional results compared to a simple year-end bonus.
Always people first
It is easier said than done. But at Gozoop we have always held that people are at the centre of business and it has worked out wonderfully for us, even though it wasn’t always easy. For us HR isn’t relegated to a support function but is a core function of our business, which ensures that our employees always remain a top priority for us.
We had to learn many harsh truths during our five year journey and unlearn many more. When all is said and done, I believe that every company has its own DNA and it is vital to find out what works for your organisation. Investing in people is a long term venture and one that you must believe in wholeheartedly to reap its dividends.
This approach has allowed us to tap into a treasure trove of unconventional and hidden talent and tap into every employee’s potential to the maximum. It has also earned us the accolade of being the youngest company and the only advertising agency to feature amongst the Top 100 Best Companies to Work For in India.
Don’t stop investing
A company’s culture is what defines it, far more than its quarterly report.One of the best ways to attract future employees and customers is by creating a vibrant culture. Once you get that right, all you need to do is work on it consistently—investing and reinvesting ceaselessly. The dividends, both tangible and intangible, are high yield.