How to Scale Your Culture in a Growing Organization | 6 Tips from a CEO

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Remote Work Teams Are Changing Leadership Dynamics
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August 20, 2019

A well-managed company culture is worth striving for as it can attract talent, motivate employees and entice investors by propelling productivity and revenue. According to Deloitte, 94 percent of executives and 88 percent of employees believe a distinct workplace culture is important to business success.

Maintaining a focus on mission, values and goals as the company grows can be increasingly difficult. Focusing on desired behaviors, motivation of teammates and how your work processes contribute to culture is critical. Here are six tips on how to scale culture in a growing company.

1. Define your organization’s values, demonstrate behaviors.

Abstract company values like “integrity” and “respect” can be interpreted by employees in different ways. To ensure the whole team is operating in the same framework, it’s important to accompany each company value with concrete, observable behaviors. As an example, respect can be embodied through being a good listener, trusting teammates to make decisions, and treating coworkers with kindness.

2. Define your organization’s story.

It’s crucial to craft and curate an organization’s brand story. This not only shapes how customers perceive a company but how employees perceive it and their place within it. A brand story can provide employees with a sense of purpose in their work. At FarWell, leadership consistently demonstrates how we meet and help businesses succeed during times of rapid-paced change. Our teams understand why they are working with each client and to effectively achieve the company’s objectives.

3. Take time to onboard properly.

For culture to be scalable, a company’s hiring and onboarding processes need to ensure each incoming employee understands and believes in the core mission, values and expected behaviors. The organization’s recruiting materials should clearly define those mission and values. During interviews with prospective employees, ask about their goals and values to see how well they align with the company culture. Once new hires come aboard, devote plenty of time to instill expectations, ethics and goals—and don’t hesitate to reiterate the company’s messages as often as necessary.

4. Keep communication frequent and open.

Be straightforward with all teammates. When possible, be open about information such as strategy, finances and goals. Involve teammates in business details to demonstrate respect and trust. Develop opportunities for teammates to be directly involved in strategy development and execution.

5. Maintain traditions.

Within the early days of a startup, it’s common for traditions to develop, such as Friday happy hours or giving unique work anniversary gifts. Don’t let this fade away as the company grows—the traditions may evolve, but they still provide employees with shared experiences that they can bond over and identify with. Team members at FarWell are invited to monthly lunches, quarterly meetings and semi-annual team events where everyone has an opportunity to meet their colleagues. Our employees work at separate client spaces and these events help us all feel more connected to one another.

6. Measure and monitor culture.

Use internal interviews or surveys to discover what employees like about the company and what they value the most about being there. Consider assessments to ensure alignment with company values and expected behaviors. This will help keep a pulse on the success of the company’s efforts, providing valuable insights about what is working and what may need to change.

From startup to scale up, culture is key to a company’s success. By using smart, deliberate efforts to manage and monitor company culture, any organization can help employees stay productive and inspired even in the face of rapid growth.

By: Jason Potter, FarWell Founder and CEO