In most organizations, labor costs are up to two thirds of the total operating costs. Nevertheless, the attention to the human factor and the culture of the company is a neglected child.
We prefer to focus on processes, procedures and systems. In periods of economic downturn, culture and attention to the human factor is often the child of the bill. This is remarkable because a large part of your organizational performance is determined by the same people.
Culture is the total of norms, values, rituals and associated symbolism. This is formed and maintained by the employees. A corporate culture is not an entity in itself [and therefore does not determine], but the collective name of the behavior and attitude of the employees.
Another point is that the corporate culture is often painted as something homogeneous. A little organization often has multiple cultures, which often clash. This subdivision has cross sections to departments or functionalities. Hence, different norms, values and rituals apply within these subcultures. The danger is that from a formal culture view, as often formulated by management and management, a uniform sausage is implemented, while there are often good reasons / arguments why the subculture of a sales department differs fundamentally from a production department.
Obviously there are basic principles that you can and want to formulate such as EBITO core values [Honest, reliable; Integrity; Transparent and Open]. But that too is an output of intrinsic behavior and motivation. Then you end up with the individual as the basis for the corporate culture. Depending on, for example, function, position, appearance, you can define a specific set of basic standards and values. At the different levels and in the different organizational parts, you will therefore want to see what the specific prevailing norms, values, rituals and symbolism are.
The question is how do the different subcultures interact. Is that subculture optimal when it comes to the specific local [department] situation and can it be harmonized well? Actually a network structure, in which different components interact with each other in different ways, intensity and frequency.
Importance of culture.
Culture is in the very core of an organization, both formally and informally. This undoubtedly affects the performance of your organization. From the attitude towards colleagues and customers, work ethics, daily routine to actual work performance. Organizations that are actively involved in the development of the culture, behavior and attitude of employees appear on average to perform better than other organizations.
To an extent, the culture of an organization can be measured. Various methods are available for this, such as a Value Survey or the 5 Values survey. It becomes more difficult to link the specific cultural aspects to actual performance.
Still, there are good examples that unambiguously demonstrate the relationship. Like the attitude of staff when it comes to safety in the workplace. Safety as a core competence, propagated by the management and management and frequently monitored and measured in the workplace, demonstrably leads to fewer accidents and fewer errors in the process.
But also, for example, the attitude of call center employees towards your customers. Are your employees understanding, patient, and solution-oriented? These are valuable behavioral elements that greatly improve customer focus and ensure a better retention rate per customer.
Building value culture.
When the culture of a company is well developed, the working environment will improve greatly in terms of performance, but also fun and attraction for employees. These benefits can be assessed through indicators such as reduced on-the-job injuries, improved service and quality, and improved employee retention levels. When employees are more satisfied and satisfied, they will be less inclined to seek refuge elsewhere. This means you keep quality and knowledge in house.
Building a values-based culture requires due diligence and measurement of the process: conducting regular evaluations using consistent statistics about the organization at all levels, and developing and implementing effective action plans. This includes a clear description of expectations, attitudes, accountability and indicators. Many companies fail here. It is essential to hold regular meetings with leadership and teams to communicate the problems and track performance by planning measurable behavior and demonstrating the value to be proven.