Transitioning to a scale-up business is good news for entrepreneurs. It just means that your organization is growing and thriving and open to greater opportunities. But oftentimes, small-business owners are faced with a particular dilemma as they expand—how to maintain a positive company culture through it all.
Rapid expansion may be a good thing, but it can easily cause an organization to lose its values and spirit. As a business owner, you may notice it each time you feel nostalgic about the good old days when things were more intimate and your culture was still so deeply ingrained in your company’s core.
If you’re currently in this rut, don’t stay in it. There still are effective ways to maintain a positive company culture through and through.
Hire the Right People
Your company is made up of the people you hire, so an essential way to maintain a company culture is to pick new hires carefully.
Hiring the right people benefits not only your organization but also the employees you’re hiring. According to a 2015 Gallup survey, only 32 percent of employees in the US are engaged in their jobs—and this usually happens when employees don’t feel like they belong in the community they’re in.
Look beyond qualifications, and try to observe your candidates’ values and points of view, making sure that they are a good fit with your company principles before you consider hiring them.
Remember Your Roots
Telling your brand’s story is an effective tool not only for drawing customers in but also for defining and keeping the brand’s culture. It shows your employees how you want your company to be perceived by the people who work in it. Ultimately, it keeps them guided in everything they do.
It’s completely up to you how you want to define your brand story. Whether it be through your company mission, core values, and workplace norms, your principles should be embraced by your employees. Do more than just hanging these words on a wall—you can remind your members every time at the start of every meeting or in the particular business decisions that you make.
Recognize Your Employees
To foster positivity within the workplace as you scale up, always remember to recognize your employees and their contributions to the company. This is a powerful way to motivate and encourage them in performing their day-to-day tasks. Aside from a yearly get-together every Christmas, there are still so many things that you can do to show employee recognition.
An effective tip to objectively reward your employees is to be timely in giving recognition. Instead of giving it too infrequently, such as every month, or less effectively, such as annually, why not base it on the nature of your business? Basing your standards on objective figures, such as total sales, may be more relevant and effective.
As your company is growing, it’s only natural to scale up employee benefits as well. Show that you care for your team’s well-being by establishing programs and facilities to keep them healthy. Aside from a gym membership, investing in an onsite clinic, complete with basic medical tools such as an SpO2 meter and blood pressure monitor, should be a great move.
Be Well-Prepared for Growth
The core to cultivating an admirable culture is the values and the stories that you share. An important thing to ensure as you scale is to constantly keep an ear out for your employees.
Adjusting to role changes as the organization grows and changes can be overwhelming to your members, so it is important for business owners to always keep their finger on the pulse of the workforce. When you have established your culture well, this can be your guide as you prepare for the challenges that lie ahead.