CEO and Founder at inclusio
June 13, 2023 - 4 min read
Why Does Organisational Culture Matter?
To cite a few statistics:
What Is Organisational Culture And How Does It Impact Employee Retention?
Organisational culture refers to the shared values, beliefs, attitudes, and behaviours that characterise a company. It's the personality of the organisation, and it shapes how employees interact with each other, management, and customers. A strong organisational culture can have a significant impact on employee retention because it creates a sense of belonging and purpose. When employees feel that they are part of a community that shares their values and goals, they are more likely to stay with the company for the long term.
A positive organisational culture can also lead to greater employee engagement. When employees feel that their work is meaningful and that they are making a difference, they are more likely to be motivated and productive. This, in turn, can lead to better business outcomes, such as increased revenue and customer satisfaction.
On the other hand, a negative organisational culture can have the opposite effect. If employees feel that they are not valued or that their contributions are not recognised, they may become disengaged and demotivated. This can lead to high turnover rates, as employees seek out more fulfilling work elsewhere.
Organisational culture can impact employee retention in other ways as well. For example, a strong culture of work-life balance can help employees feel that they are able to maintain a healthy balance between their personal and professional lives. This can lead to greater job satisfaction and a lower likelihood of burnout. Similarly, a culture of learning and development can help employees feel that they are growing and developing professionally, which can lead to greater job satisfaction and a lower likelihood of boredom or stagnation.
What are the key components of a strong organizational culture that can lead to higher employee retention?
A strong organizational culture is built on a foundation of shared values and beliefs that guide the behaviour of employees. These values and beliefs are communicated through various channels, such as company mission statements, vision statements, and core values. When employees understand and embrace these values, they are more likely to feel a sense of belonging and purpose within the organization, which can lead to higher levels of engagement and retention.
Another key component of a strong organizational culture is effective communication. Leaders who communicate regularly and transparently with their employees can help to build trust and foster a sense of community within the organization. This can lead to higher levels of employee satisfaction and retention, as employees feel valued and respected.
Employee recognition and appreciation are also important components of a strong organizational culture. When employees feel that their contributions are valued and recognized, they are more likely to feel motivated and engaged in their work. This can lead to higher levels of job satisfaction and retention, as employees feel that they are making a meaningful contribution to the organization.
Finally, a strong organizational culture is one that promotes work-life balance and employee well-being. When employees feel that their personal needs and well-being are valued by the organization, they are more likely to feel satisfied and committed to their work. This can lead to higher levels of retention, as employees are less likely to seek employment elsewhere in search of a better work-life balance.
How can a company measure its current organizational culture and identity areas for improvement?
Measuring the current organizational culture can be done through various methods such as surveys, interviews, and focus groups. Surveys can be distributed to employees to gather their opinions on the company's values, communication, leadership, and overall culture. Interviews with key personnel such as managers and executives can provide insight into the company's goals and how they align with the culture. Focus groups can also be conducted to gather opinions from a diverse group of employees. These methods can help identify areas where the company's culture is strong and where it needs improvement.
Another way to measure the organizational culture is to look at employee turnover rates. High turnover rates can indicate a negative or toxic culture, while low turnover rates can indicate a positive and supportive culture. Exit interviews can also provide valuable feedback on why employees are leaving and what can be improved in the culture to retain them.
Once the current organizational culture has been measured, the company can identify areas for improvement. This can be done by analyzing the data collected from surveys, interviews, and focus groups. The company can then create an action plan to address the areas that need improvement. For example, if the survey results show that employees do not feel valued, the company can implement recognition programs or offer professional development opportunities to show employees that their contributions are appreciated.
It is important to note that improving the organizational culture is an ongoing process. The company should regularly measure the culture and make adjustments as needed. This will help ensure that the culture remains strong and supportive, leading to greater employee engagement and retention.
What are some best practices for building a positive and inclusive organizational culture that can lead to employee retention?
One of the best practices for building a positive and inclusive organizational culture is to establish a clear set of values and principles that guide the organization's actions and decisions. These values should be communicated to all employees and integrated into all aspects of the company's operations. This helps to create a sense of purpose and direction for employees, and fosters a shared sense of identity and belonging within the organization.
Another important practice is to encourage open communication and collaboration among employees. This can be achieved through regular team-building activities, open-door policies, and opportunities for feedback and input. When employees feel that their voices are heard and their contributions are valued, they are more likely to feel invested in the success of the organization and less likely to seek opportunities elsewhere.
Creating a supportive and inclusive work environment is also crucial for building a positive organizational culture. This means promoting diversity and inclusivity in all aspects of the workplace, from hiring practices to daily interactions among employees. When employees feel that they are valued for who they are and that their unique perspectives are appreciated, they are more likely to feel engaged and committed to the organization.
Finally, it is important to recognize and reward employees for their contributions and achievements. This can be done through formal recognition programs, such as employee of the month awards or performance bonuses, as well as through informal gestures such as thank-you notes or public praise. When employees feel that their hard work and dedication are appreciated, they are more likely to feel motivated and committed to the organization over the long term.
What are some case studies or examples of companies that have successfully maximized employee retention through a strong organizational culture?
Zappos is a well-known example of a company that has successfully maximized employee retention through a strong organizational culture. The company places a strong emphasis on creating a positive and inclusive work environment, with a focus on employee happiness. Zappos offers a range of employee benefits, such as free lunches and on-site fitness classes, and encourages employees to take part in company-wide events and initiatives. This has resulted in a highly engaged and loyal workforce, with a turnover rate of just 14%.
Another example is Google, which has a strong focus on creating a positive and supportive work environment. The company offers a range of employee benefits, such as free meals and on-site healthcare, and encourages employees to take part in company-wide initiatives and projects. Google also places a strong emphasis on employee development and growth, offering a range of training and development opportunities. This has resulted in a highly engaged and motivated workforce, with a turnover rate of just 10%.
Patagonia is another company that has successfully maximized employee retention through a strong organizational culture. The company places a strong emphasis on sustainability and environmentalism, and encourages employees to take part in company-wide initiatives and projects that align with these values. Patagonia also offers a range of employee benefits, such as flexible working hours and on-site childcare, and places a strong emphasis on work-life balance. This has resulted in a highly engaged and loyal workforce, with a turnover rate of just 4%.
About the Author:
Sandra is an Organisational Psychologist and NLP Master Practitioner. Over 17 years she has championed and driven diversity and inclusion practice across industry and is considered a leading expert. In 2014, she was involved in establishing the EU Diversity Charter Ireland. In 2020 Sandra was a member of the Expert Advisory Group for Ireland’s Citizens Assembly.