How to create a positive workplace culture

How tocreate a positive workplace culture

Table of contents

There’s no real secret to creating a positive workplace culture — it all boils down to employee behaviour, the values of the company and how those values are translated into actions. Having a positive workplace culture is critical for recruitment, employee retention and getting the best out of your team working together. Richard Branson says that the first thing he looks for when hiring is “a personality that fits with the company culture”.

Creating and sustaining a positive workplace culture may seem easy on principle. But as businesses grow and different personalities join the organisation, positivity can easily turn to toxicity. A positive workplace can be created by focusing on innovation, flexibility, or empowerment. Alternatively, a company’s culture could be seen as negative when it is hierarchical, bureaucratic, or power-driven. 

Positive workplace cultures and successful companies stand out from the rest of the pack, but they need to be crafted and nurtured, they don’t just happen. 

There is no magical formula to get you the perfect workplace culture but there are some steps you can take and tools you can use to set you on the right path:

1. Define and communicate your values

Values are at the heart of any company’s culture. You should define which values reflect a positive culture and continuously communicate them to the workforce. Your values should drive how teams work; how they communicate with each other; how they interact with customers and how you recruit. These values need to be crystal clear to everyone both inside and outside of the company. Defining your values is a great first step, but the next step is to put those values into action and to get everyone’s buy-in.

2. Walk the talk

Having a sense of purpose at work is critical to employee satisfaction and helps to build a sense of team with everyone working together to move in the same direction. Senior stakeholders and line managers should be real-life role models, demonstrating business values, and every person’s job in the company should be clearly linked to the company’s vision. Taking the time to explain that link can be helpful when new employees join or when existing employees switch roles. This gives employees a sense of belonging that will motivate them to strive for more. Engaged employees are more efficient, enthusiastic, and are willing to do their best to help you succeed.

3. Promote social interaction

Strong relationships at work are vital for building a positive culture. Encourage your employees to take breaks and talk to one another. Taking breaks throughout the day is essential for mood and concentration, and they can help build a sense of team.

Social interaction not only helps build a better culture, but it allows ideas and opportunities to develop and flow around a company. Facilitating places for this to happen could be a great way to foster a positive workplace culture. Allowing time for your employees to relax and connect with each other is a great way to keep them motivated and productive.

Give employees a voice

Enabling employees to share their views and feedback can cultivate a positive culture of inclusion, empowerment and a strong sense of being valued. Involving workers and allowing them to have a say in their work environment enhances feelings of goodwill and trust towards their employer. Listening to employees’ views and feedback should be followed by timely responses and tangible action to demonstrate that contributions are being heard.

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Show recognition

Actions speak louder than words. Having a great company culture on paper is one thing but,  to make it work, you need to reward actions. Appreciate and reward great work that aligns with your culture. This will boost employee morale and motivate them to perform even better in the future.

Genuine recognition for your employees’ output, talents, and contributions is also crucial. Recognising accomplishments and praising your team members when deserved can have a big impact on your company’s culture. 

Finally, another quote from Richard Branson:

“Create the kind of workplace and company that will attract great talent. If you hire brilliant people, they will make work feel more like play.”

Behavioural science helps us understand how we think and make decisions. At BAD. we help businesses shape their teams with our customised digital experiences, to craft a great work environment. Contact BAD today to learn more.

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How to create a positive workplace culture

Positive workplace culture is about more than just how employees get on or after-work events. Workplace culture is about employee behaviour, the values of the company and how those values are translated into actions.