Guide To Company Culture

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 10 December 2022

Published 20 January 2020

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

A strong, positive company culture largely depends on the ultimate goals and needs of the organization and its employees. While every organization will have a different company culture, the culture of your workplace should inspire, motivate and engage you while you are in your role.

In this article, we will define what company culture is, how it can impact an organization and ways you can support it from an individual contributor or managerial position.

What is company culture?

Company culture is a collection of beliefs, values, attitudes and behaviors that are sustained through a collective effort. A company’s culture is what characterizes the organization and may include the way relationships are handled between employees and customers, the values put forth by the company or the beliefs and attitudes held by members of the team.

When trying to identify what a company’s culture is, it’s usually best to take a look at the business’s mission statement or core values, as this usually can give you insight into what the culture at the organization may look like. Speaking to executives and higher-level management can be another great way to better understand a company’s culture, as they should have a firm grasp of the organization’s culture.

A company's culture ultimately sets the tone for employee engagement and satisfaction. Without a culture that promotes employees to enjoy and thrive in their work environment, a business will likely struggle to succeed.

Related:

  • 12 Vision Questions To Focus Your Organization

  • How to Build a Team Culture (With Definition and Tips)

  • What Is Culture in Business? (Definition and Examples)

Attributes that impact culture

It’s important to remember that each company’s culture will differ depending on its mission and core values. However, the main attributes that companies should consider when defining their culture include passion, autonomy and performance:

Passion

Passion is important for employee loyalty and satisfaction. When employees are consistently passionate about their work and workplace, they tend to feel more united in working towards shared goals.

Autonomy

Autonomy should be prioritized among managers by trusting their teams to do their jobs well. A successful organization must understand that one of the key motivators for employees is feeling proud of their work. Empowering individuals to innovate and manage their own work is important to have a healthy and positive company culture.

Performance

Performance is another attribute that impacts the culture of an organization. Businesses should recognize and celebrate high-performing employees for the quality of their work.

Read more: Using Incentives To Motivate Employees

Core values and company culture

A company must have a strong set of core values that will help shape the overall culture. Core values are a set of practices, ideas or beliefs that outline how the company operates, including how it grows, allocates resources and makes decisions. Identifying and understanding the core values of an organization will help you to be more aligned with the company’s culture and goals. Examples of core values for a business include:

  • Integrity

  • Commitment to customers and/or employees

  • Honest, direct and open communication

  • Quality and reliability of product/service

  • Opportunities for growth and self-improvement

After establishing core values, business leaders can embody those values to implement a more defined company culture. However, to do this, the leaders of the company must live by those values and practice them every day. Setting goals and surveying employees can help leaders stay on track and maintain an atmosphere of accountability.

Related:

  • What Is Organisational Culture?

  • Signs of a Health Company Culture (Plus Types)

  • Creating a Workplace Mentoring Program: Key Steps and Tips

Individual core values and company culture

Your core values can also impact the types of company cultures you look for when applying to jobs. If you're not sure what your personal core values are, think about the traits and qualities you most admire in mentors or leaders at work.

Another great way to set your personal core values is to identify what motivates you or what your future career goals are. These can help you understand which values you will need in your workplace to help you achieve your goals and thrive in your role.

When you have prioritized your values, it will become easier to identify the jobs or companies that are the right fit for you.

Additional benefits of a healthy culture

A healthy company culture brings several benefits to employees, as well as the organization as a whole. When employees can share their challenges and successes, they often feel they are part of a team or community inspired by a shared goal. As a result, this can help increase productivity, employee retention and morale. A strong company culture can also inspire innovation and creativity, which can help the organization as a whole thrive and succeed.

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