Why Company Culture Is A Journey
Creating a company culture is a journey, an organic process that will no doubt often change. After all, with it being intrinsically people based, the world and people will change, and therefore the culture may need to change or evolve over time.
This is important to remember and not to be disheartened by. It doesn’t mean your culture is going to fail and that all your hard work is going to be pointless. It simply means you will need to take regular pit stops to check in on your company culture and continue to assess and analyse whether it’s still working for your business and the world it sits in.
While you may not set out to create an agile company culture, by adopting a growth mindset around your company culture you can ensure that no matter the change that occurs, people or the society around us, your organisation can adapt and thrive.
Here are the reasons you need to see company culture as a journey.
Because people change
The same workforce that entered employment twenty years ago is very different to the workforce who are entering the workplace today.
For the first time in modern history, we have five generations present in the workplace.
With people working well beyond retirement and school leavers entering the workplace, there has never been a more multigenerational workforce.
This increase in diversity is something to be celebrated when it comes to company culture, as each generation can learn from the other.
But if your company has only been built to satisfy the ‘workaholic’ baby boomers or the digital natives that are Generation Z; you have a big problem in how your organisation is going to thrive.
Simply modeling your company culture around the desires of one generation doesn’t work. It won’t attract a diverse team, and it won’t enable you to retain new employees.
Each generation has its stereotypes and collective values, which means with every fresh young employee that enters the workforce, also comes a fresh new approach to the way they view company culture.
Consistently reflecting on your company culture and how it supports the modern workforce is part of the journey when maintaining a strong culture.
Because the world changes
You only need to look at the news to see the changes that happen in the world every day.
At present, Brexit and the environmental challenges of plastic pollution are the trending topics of 2019, but this can change in a heartbeat. And it does.
Even by analysing our own beliefs over time you can see that our attitudes towards the environment have significantly changed over the past five years. In fact, a global study by Nielsen found that 81% of consumers feel strongly that companies should improve the environment.
The world changes, and with those changes come new attitudes, behaviours, and values. All elements that hold a company culture together.
In order to remain relevant, your company culture has to take into account the feelings and attitudes of the people that it employs.
How is your company culture reflecting the current values and beliefs that are evolving in the world?
Because technology moves forward
Technology has already revolutionised the workplace. From cloud computing providing us with the ability to make remote working a possibility, social media connecting us to our customers, or to internet banking enabling us to become international organisations. Business as we know it has changed dramatically over the past decade.
In the past, all businesses needed was an office and a physical desk, but thanks to the advancements in technology we’ve made work, work for us.
With the growth of artificial intelligence, technology will become even more ingrained into our daily lives, and even more so into our working lives.
It’s expected that AI will change the way we recruit people, improve our productivity and unfortunately, according to PwC, take 3% of our job roles.
What does this mean for company culture? We’re not sure, but what we do know, is that technology has taken ideas from our wildest imaginations and made them into a reality. What we imagine our workplaces to be in the future, could be vastly different to the reality that awaits us.
The way we work is changing, and it will continue to change.
Which means when it comes to company culture you have to be agile enough to stay ahead of the predictions and know how significant changes will impact the organisation and its people.
When you adopt the understanding that company culture is a journey, you put aside the stress and strain of creating something ‘everlasting’, and enjoy the ride that is ahead.
Approach change with curiosity and use it to discover more about your people and the organisation rather than push it away with fear and crumble at trouble.
If you’re interested in creating an agile company culture or understanding more about the foundations of company culture, contact me about my company culture training programme.