[Employee] engagement grows organically from a fertile soil of culture, purposeful work, respect, and trust.” The Employee Experience: How to attract talent, retain top performers, and drive results. Tracy Maylett and Matthew Wride, 2017, Wiley.
Culture creates a unique brand for an organisation which helps them stand out amongst the rest of their competitors. So what does your culture say about your organisation and does it create a positive or negative employee experience?
Strong cultures create a sense of empowerment for employees and give them a real understanding of the company goals, regulations and philosophy. Employees are allowed to be driven and feel respected in such cultures which gives them a positive employee experience and benefits the overall health of a company.
On the other hand, in organisations with a weak culture employees feel lost, unmotivated and operate under a regime of fear, all ingredients for a negative employee experience. Fear may motivate individuals but not for long and for all of the wrong reasons.
So having a strong culture aligned with your brand and vision is a great start, but there are some types of strong culture more suited to a positive employee experience than others.
Cassie Paton includes the Team-first culture in her 5 category typology, such a culture makes employees’ happiness its top priority. Frequent team outings, opportunities to provide meaningful feedback, and flexibility to accommodate employees’ family lives are common markers of a team-first culture.
- Have you got a Team-first Culture? Ask yourself:
- Are your Employees friends with people across departments?
- Do your Employees regularly socialise outside of work?
- Do you receive thoughtful feedback from employees in surveys?
- Do your people take pride in their individual work spaces?
Brittani Sponaugle has a similar concept with the “[Baseball] Team Culture”, again this culture aligns with creating a positive employee experience, as it is an organisational culture derived from an employee’s stand point. Such environments say “it’s all about the employees”. Do you have [Baseball] Team Culture? Ask yourself:
- Are your employees genuinely happy in their work?
- Do your employees feel comfortable at and in their work?
- Do your employees feel respected?
- Do your employees feel listened to?
- Do your employees feel you are honest with them?
If they do the work will get done and the employees will want to stick with the company for the long haul and ultimately your customer experience and bottom line will.
(sources: Kenexa 201,Towers Watson 2012, Aon Hewitt 2010, CBI)
On the other hand:
- If only the numbers matter and employees can be recruited and terminated with ease based on those numbers,
- if employees are monitored every step of the way, with poor performance resulting in even closer scrutiny whilst good performance goes unrewarded,
- if policies are written from a perspective that employees cannot be trusted,
- and if processes and procedures are not aligned with a positive employee experience
then the work will not be done well, employees will not want to stick with the company for the long haul, and customer experience and bottom line will suffer.