There are a lot of challenges for CEOs in the current business environment, which can be a worry for those new to the job or their current positions, not wanting to start on a negative note. If you’re in this position, the good news is that some of the best things you can do for your team cost very little and quickly start getting results. These steps towards building a positive company culture will help everybody get through difficult times in good spirits.
Ask employees what matters most at work, and a high proportion will say that they want to be listened to. They know what their jobs involve better than anybody else, and they often have suggestions that can benefit everyone. Taking the time to pay attention to them makes them feel valued, as they know their efforts are being noticed and their work means something. Keep them informed about organisational goals and achievements. Good communication from the top also encourages openness between employees, improving teamwork. Look for ways to incentivise working together rather than using rewards which promote competition and can lead to workers intentionally obstructing one another.
Nothing demonstrates that you value employees more effectively than investing in them. This can mean spending money to provide training or advance their education, with returns for the company in future as their new skills improve their productivity. It can also mean simply taking the time to identify areas where they’re struggling and provide direct mentoring. You may find that you already have a lot of untapped talent within your team and that freeing up time for employees to train each other helps those who are struggling, gives the mentors a deeper understanding of their existing skills, and enhances their confidence.
Getting employees to work more closely together, in this or other ways, requires making sure they’re comfortable with each other. We all unconsciously absorb prejudices from the world around us, which can be a big problem in the workplace. The best way to break them down is by increasing understanding, so look for opportunities to do so. If you’re using workplace drug and alcohol testing, you can talk about addiction, explaining how common it is and letting employees who are struggling know that it’s safe to ask for help. If you’re adjusting your COVID policy, you can talk about issues faced by people with chronic illness and so on. This relaxed but proactive approach lets you gradually educate your workforce and makes everyone feel that their opinion matters.
Significant changes in company culture can be brought about by small positive actions taken on a daily basis. When your employees see you are making an effort, they’ll realise that you have a positive vision for the company. They will feel more confident about the future, motivating them to make the effort today, which will help to secure a solid future for the business.