Tag Archives: Culture

Our Company Culture cont.

What shapes a company’s culture? Have you found out yet? Earlier this week I wrote about the top three keys I think make and shape a company’s culture. The first post was about values. I had so much to say about it because I believe it makes a large portion up of how it shapes the culture. Have you found out what the values of your business or organization are?

The second key that makes the culture of a company is vision. We have to have an aim and believe ourselves going for it. When we have no vision of where we want to go, we become lost. Everyone that is on board will dive out because there is no direction.

When vision is planned, don’t get too carried away with the dream that it starts to look as a fantasy with the rest of the team-members. I think it should be reachable, consistent, and realistic.

Churches for example tend to set a vision but may never achieve it. Reasons because those visions are far out of reach and unrealistic.

Before we made huge changes, my church tended to fit in the category. We had a vision. Our vision was to get a bigger building that everyone could attend. The size of this place was seen as having 100 acres. I’m thinking to myself, is that even possible? Of course the leader always has to share his vision with his members in order to move forward, but this casted vision seemed out of the ball park. I think we had to be realistic here and cast a more reachable vision. The members all agreed, they all believe in this vision and hoped on board. Throughout the year it was mentioned consistently, and people were motivated by it. They kept inviting other people to hear the greatness. They were excited knowing that their vision was such a positive feeling.

As we got through the year we kept on hearing what we were aiming for. A downside started turning, people were starting to get tired of it. In my opinion, I think most of these members started getting frustrated of the usual hearing and the leader never taking any action for it. The reason being because the vision felt like a direction that isn’t reachable. People started to hop out of the boat, we had to look at the vision the church was aiming for. Dramatic changes had to be made and the vision had to be re looked at.

The third and final key that shapes the culture of a company I think is to invest in your team. When we invest in our team we are showing them that we care for them, they mean a lot to us and they are our assets. Now I know some of you may say, “But why should I invest in my team when they don’t do nothing on their part?” Well you hired them, doesn’t that make you a fool for that process?

Investing in them brings loyalty, it’s similar to recognition towards them. So you may ask what I mean by investing? We don’t invest in them by inviting them to barbecues or giving them discounts from our own company, that’s relevant to taking advantage. We invest in them with ways they can improve their skills being used at work. Meaning we send them off to seminar or courses and we pay for them. This type of investment towards them acknowledges that the leader cares for them and wants their strong qualities to be improved.

In organizations, when the leader cares, he doesn’t fear the risk of regrets. You are family, and when the leader sees you having a difficult time, he will see that. Example being the leader at our church. He invested in our musicians. Hired a music teacher to further improve them. When those musicians gain more skills, they invested back into the leader by bringing loyalty and commitment. However, not all of them had that in thought. One of the members was having an awful time. He was struggling financially. There was a day where we went grocery shopping and left those purchases on his door step. It felt really good that we made that happen so he had food to feed his kids. Closer into the year he made the choice to leave the organization. He took those skills gained and left nothing behind him. Asked if the leader regrets giving him the time and investment, he said no because he knew in the future it would pay off. The whole congregation took notice and respect for the leader grew at a high level. The culture in the air felt warm and loving. They all were taught that when we give, we may not expect nothing in return, but our lives are that much better each and every day.

Values, vision, and investment are what make the culture of a place. What has your company visioned striving for? Has the leader invested in their team? Going back to our precious post, how were you valued at a company? And lastly what makes the company culture where you are at?

Our Company Culture

Company culture is one of the traits I look at in businesses, especially the place I’ve worked in and church organizations I’ve been involved with. As I continue to develop my growth each and every day, I’ve observed how company culture is different in many places. I see it as how it shapes the place and how people interact with each other. It’s the vibe you feel as soon as you walk into their space and the culture truly affects those involved around it. If someone were to ask you to define your company’s culture in two words, what would it be? Commitment and quality, engagement and energetic, honest and reasonable, these are a few examples. But what is it really?

I’ve read several great book by authors that talk on the issue of company culture and after reflecting on them all, I’ve applied and listed three keys that make a company’s culture. Note that you may or may not agree with it, so your opinions are appreciated, but the following are:

  • Values
  • Vision
  • Investment

This is one of the biggest keys I’ve seen pop up when someone determines how the culture is shaped. Picture in your head that someone comes up to you and asks, “What is it that your company values?” Maybe it’s already happened, so what was your response? Sometimes we even have to pause and think because we’re not sure what the company really values the most. Do they value their customers? Work quality? Team-members? Their vision? And I know perhaps in church, those attending would come with the response that they value God, but excluding Him, what else do they value that makes their culture in the organization so great?

I believe we should value each other. I remember one of the first jobs I had, the values in putting customers first was great, but there was little to no value in the members bonding together. It was laid back but no one was putting as much time getting to know each other. The only way you’d get them talking was if you walked by coincidentally or if I needed them for help with a task. During lunch it felt awkward, everyone grabbing their meals in the kitchen and going their separate ways. The only ones staying there would be the ones having no where else to go and casually watch television. Having a decent conversation would be two people, and these two obviously are the only two connected well. And now I’m asking myself why didn’t they valued each other more as a team? The result was the leader. Sure we had a manager, but what I saw in the manager, I saw in the leader as well. Both weren’t fully engaged with the team. The leader is what determines this value.

There were problems. It was disorganized and the blame game would occur often. The manager would come late and didn’t know what was going on. The leader was unheard of. The only time you got to have a talk with him was at the time of being hired or doing overtime and seeing him leave. Other than that, he’d come in around the afternoon, waive at you and head upstairs to his office. That was it! So did that same quality transition unto team?

I felt bad with what was going on with this new team-member we had. We didn’t know his name because he didn’t get the proper introduction at the time because of our hectic work schedule. We only found out who he was by another member stumbling upon knowing his name. The guy was quiet, but he seemed hard working and getting by. There was a day that a tragic event occurred involving his wife. We all were called into the manager’s office. He gave out the situation and what could be done to help, but the faces on everyone seemed clueless on who he was. They called for a small charitable donation, and looking back now, I’m not sure if he received a good amount. Wherever this guy is now, I hope him and his family are blessed and doing well.

Why are values needed in being part of a great company culture? How does the leader affect it? As I mentioned, the leader was hardly to be found. Very friendly but had no involvement with the team and felt as if we were all partially abandoned. We were all very skilled at what we did, but weak bonding as a team. We needed to be improved.

I will break this down into two posts for you readers. Company culture on vision and investment you can expect for Friday. Until then some questions for you to think about are in simple words describe your company’s culture? What do they value the most and value the least? What are ways you think it can improve?