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May 9, 2016 Erin Hall

5 Persistent Company Culture Ideas You’ve Got All Wrong

We all know bad company culture when we see it.: Unmotivated employees, lack of trust and communication, and a generally apathetic atmosphere.

So what’s the best way to create great culture? To see if your organization is on the right track, check out these 5 corporate culture myths.

 5 Company Culture Myths That Just Won’t Quit


Company culture ideas

Myth #1: You know what you’re doing

Reading articles like this one or taking a webinar on creating corporate culture is a good way to understand where to start.

But don’t think for a moment that general ideas about culture will help YOUR company in specific ways. 

You’ve got to ask your employees what kind of elements they want in their company culture — find out what’s working already and what’s broken.

Bring your team in on the conversation, and involve everyone in the process of building your company culture. Mangers, directors, and HR VPs have the power to implement great programs. But make sure they are programs that make sense for your team. 

Related: 3 Quick Tips to Boost Employee Morale


Myth #2: Corporate culture doesn’t impact your finances

Happy workers are productive workers who stay with your organization for a long time. This means less time, money, and resources spent on hiring new people once burn-out hits.

Workers won’t stay where the environment isn’t a place of positive career growth and pleasant people. 

This is why it’s so important to hire the right people in the first place. Don’t just hire for technical skills, but also for who is a match to the culture you are creating.  

Aside from on-boarding costs, the right corporate culture makes it possible for employees to do their best work, which means deadlines are met, problems are solved, and clients are kept happy.

Related: How This One Hiring Decision Changes a Company’s Culture


Company Culture Ideas


Myth #3: Employees create the culture alone

Everyone in an organization is involved in the creation and ongoing support of a culture –whether the culture is positive or negative. It’s not on the employees’ shoulders to build the corporate culture.

Because here’s the truth: Whatever the top management people believe about how a business should be run will trickle down and start creating the culture. 

If a CEO believes their employees are replaceable cogs in a machine who are there to make the company money — the culture won’t be one that anyone thrives in. Even if there are “values” that try to claim otherwise.

What’s important to a boss will help create the worker’s experience. If a CEO wants these particular employees to grow and help the business grow as a result, the culture will be one where employees thrive, are appropriately challenged, support one another, and are happy to be part of the team.


company culture myths


Myth #4: Workplace culture is built from perks

Your company culture is not built from just one thing.

A foosball table and free snacks is a drop in the bucket of what creates corporate culture.

There are other factors to consider when thinking about how to shape your workplace culture. Ensuring that workers have creative freedom and reachable team goals is just as much a part of a culture as are PTO policies and starting salaries. 

Related: 9 Ways to Build Company Culture From the Ground Up


Myth #5: The right culture will fix your problems

While it’s true that a toxic culture is detrimental to your business, getting your culture back on track isn’t the one thing that will fix all the problems.

Just like the human body needs a combination of diet, exercise, sleep, and the right genes to function well, so too does a business need a mix of things to create winning results.

Culture is a key ingredient to creating a successful business, because it’s what supports your workers to excel at their jobs. But open communication and a ping pong table in the break room wont fix a poor business plan.


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