Culture Determines Organizational Happiness

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Culture

{Written by Liz Stincelli, Senior Consultant at Customer Fanatix)

To make customers happy, we have to make sure our employees are happy first.” —Zappos

Healthy Culture

Employees don’t want to work for an organization where the culture feels oppressive, unwelcoming, and cold. If you want to move forward as an organization then you need every employee to work together to achieve shared objectives. The key lies in developing a culture where employees want to work together.

You get so much more productivity from happy employees; you have lower levels of employee turnover; and your employees are more energized and take fewer sick days. Happy employees also treat each other and your customers better. The culture that you, as a leader, develop affects the behavior, performance, and decision making of your employees. Build a culture that bonds employees together in a spirit of loyalty and commitment to the organization. A healthy culture will result in happy employees. So, what does a healthy culture need in order for employees to thrive?

Trust

Trust provides the foundation from which you build all relationships. A healthy culture enhances the ability of employees to develop the trusting relationships which improve team effectiveness and productivity. Show your employees by the example that you set that you trust them and that you are deserving of their trust. Be consistent; consistency helps employees to trust management because they know what to expect.  

When employees feel there is mutual trust they are more likely to feel content. When you show your employees that you trust their judgment and ability to perform you raise their confidence and job satisfaction levels. Happy employees trust that their work environment is safe and stable. And, they know what to expect from their leaders.

Engagement

A healthy culture offers employees a sense of purpose and encourages them to challenge the status quo. Engagement helps employees to feel they are an important part of a team. A culture that encourages employee engagement offers challenges, allows employees to have control over their own work tasks, and gives them the opportunity to continue to develop their knowledge and skills.

Engagement inspires and energizes employees. When employees feel fully engaged they become emotionally committed to working hard in the best interest of the organization. When employees who are engaged in the work they do, they become loyal, innovative, and of service to others.

Empowerment

Gone are the days of employees who are content to work like mindless robots. Employees want to be heard. They want a say in how the organization they work for is run and the freedom to design their work, their way. Empowerment gives employees the autonomy they desire. As a leader, you must involve employees in developing solutions to organizational problems and give them power over the implementation process. A healthy culture allows employees to help set team goals and participate in making team decisions.

Happy employees are empowered by being offered discretion, control, and independence over their work. They believe that their work is important and has meaning. Their input is respected. They are treated as competent to perform well and know their actions and decisions matter. Employees who are encouraged to be active participants in the success of the organization are happy employees.

Communication

Employees want to know where the organization is going, what does the future look like, how they contribute, and why it’s important. As a leader, you must develop a culture where objectives and expectations are clearly communicated. A healthy culture has systems in place to keep employees informed of what is happening in the organization and avenues in place for expressing appreciation to employees for their contributions.

Happy employees feel acknowledged for the vital role they play in the success of the organization. When you, as a leader communicate openly with employees they feel respected. Communicate a specific and consistent vision. Happy employees are engaged in conversations about their goals and aspirations. They know that they are truly being heard and allowed to participate in formulating solutions to organizational problems.

Opportunity

Times have changed; employees have become more educated and skilled. They want the opportunity to participate in the leadership and decision-making process of the organization. High performing employees expect the opportunity to be independent. A healthy culture creates opportunities for employee growth. This type of culture encourages investment in employees and offers challenging and purposeful work.

Happy employees find their work fulfilling and meaningful. They are encouraged to bring their passion and new ideas to the table. They are given the opportunity to learn and contribute on an on-going basis.

Share in success

When employees share in the success of the organization they are willing to invest more and more of themselves. When they feel that their ideas are respected and value, they are happy to go above and beyond for the benefit of the organization. A healthy culture eliminates the attitude of us versus them and shares successes as a whole.

Happy employees have a sense of ownership in the organization and feel like they are more than just employees. Having a vested interest in the success of the organization increases employee job satisfaction and productivity. Sharing successes as a team develops a sense of community and belonging.

Happy Employees

Look at your culture from the perspective of your employees because their perceptions of the culture you are developing impacts the satisfaction they receive from their work. If you want happy employees, your culture should encourage the development of relationships built on mutual trust. You must emphasize the value of the contributions made by employees and focuses on engagement and empowerment. Happy employees are led by a leader who communicates openly and respectfully. They are offered opportunities for participation and personal growth. Successes are shared throughout the organization.

As a leader, it is your responsibility to develop a culture that brings out the best in your employees. Develop a culture that brings employees together and makes them feel that their contributions are important to the organization. The healthy culture you create will result in happy employees who are committed to you, as their leader, and to the success of the organization as a whole.

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If you’d like any of the team to help you evaluate your culture through our evaluation services, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

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