SOS Company Culture

01 december 2020

Your company culture might need a checkup.

And we’re not talking about rearranging those inspirational post-it’s you put up on the canteen wall.

Company culture is a big and complex theme, but the easiest way to explain it is:

The way employees behave when management is not watching.

And a lot of employees aren’t doing great at the moment.

Much of this has to do with the fact that this COVID thing doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, which strips employees from something that is vital to their wellbeing: human interaction.

Have you noticed for example, that the amount of emails has been going up, as face-to- face interaction has been diminishing?

It’s happening all over the place and it’s not a good thing.

Because these little moments of “How is your husband doing after his lay-off?” or “Did you manage to have a nice weekend after sleeping so poorly last week?” create a bond that allows your employees to feel seen, heard, and important. And that just doesn’t happen through an email discussing the to-do list of next week.

And you might say, look, it’s a complicated time.
Things will get back to normal once the pandemic is over.

But unfortunately, that might not be the case.

See, the kind of frustrations employees are currently facing, tend to seep into the company culture and in time, those frustrations transform into shitty morale, a lack of motivation and, ultimately, a decline in profit too.

So what can you do to prevent your company culture from crashing?

Three things.

  1. It’s important not to implement massive cultural changes right now, as this would only cause more upset. Focus on managing the culture, on keeping it healthy. Ask yourself, how can I make sure that we remain a team, rather than a set of individuals.
  2. Increase your personal contact with your employees. Dedicating 5 minutes at the beginning of a Zoom meeting to check in with them can truly do wonders. Keep your eyes and ears open for friction. Be open to complaints too.
  3. The end-of-year evaluations are a wonderful opportunity to focus on your employees’ efforts — not just their results. Utilize the moment to reward, encourage and connect.

In truth, without a healthy company culture, it’s only a matter of time before things start falling apart. While this bizarre year is slowly (finally!) coming to an end, take the time to check in with your culture.

2021 will thank you for it.

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