Whether you’ve just entered a new company and are trying to change the corporate culture, or you’ve been with the same company but are starting to see problems with your current culture that are in dire need of a fix, the steps to change corporate culture will be the same.
Company culture has become the biggest culprit for problems associated with employee behaviors and performance. While not always to blame, the impact of company culture is huge. Your company culture dictates the different incentive programs at your company, decision making processes and the behaviors of employees. Changing company culture is no small feat. If you’re attempting to change your company’s culture there are four factors that you need to focus on.
Changing Company Culture
Identify the new culture – Start by determining what the structure and processes will be of your new culture. Are you looking to decentralize operations and create more decision making autonomy? Or are you trying to drive more creative innovation? Regardless of your goal, it’s important to map out the structure and how processes will flow. A big corporation with multiple office locations in the country looking to create more autonomy, might ask corporate managers to not interfere with the decision made by the management of the local office. By putting that structure into place, managers would hopefully learn to butt out of operations, and let local offices determine the best courses for action in their specific markets. By allowing local offices to operate under their own accord, you start to empower them to make those decisions, and as a different crisis comes about, they’ll learn to solve their own problems and become more autonomous.
Focus on the people– As you’re trying to build these new processes and structures throughout your organization, don’t forget to keep your employees in the loop. Make sure that they are kept up-to-date on training and have all of the knowledge they need to be successful within the new company culture. Also, don’t be afraid to bring in new employees who can fit within this new culture and bring a fresh perspective. New employees can be help reinforce the company culture change, and keeping your existing employees trained and enthusiastic about the changes will foster change and cooperation.
Reward employees for the behaviors you want – You’re trying to drive change, so why not reward your employees for displaying the behaviors that will help be catalysts for change within your organization. Changing your company culture will require buy-in from your employees, and there’s no better way to get them want to change the culture, then by rewarding them for helping them change it.
Review, revise, optimize – Throughout the change process, make sure to continuously ask for and receive feedback and evaluations on the performance of the culture change. Understand what’s working and what’s not. Then, begin to revise your change processes and structure until you get everyone to buy-in to the new company culture. It’s never easy to change your company culture, but consistently evaluating your progress will help ensure that you create a company culture that every employee is happy with.