Guest blog: Culture and values – what’s it worth?
The true cost of culture and values
The vast majority of people turn up for work wanting to do a great job. But, unfortunately, many organisations manage to rapidly prevent them achieving that goal. Not intentionally of course; but unless you have a well planned on-boarding process accompanied by a welcoming culture, you are likely to fall at the first hurdle as the glow of the new job becomes tarnished by the reality of bureaucracy, process, and daily tedium. This is when a good culture supported by meaningful values can make all the difference.
It will have cost your organisation around £30,000 to find and replace that employee and in turn he or she has spent a great deal in time, energy, and probably anxiety, changing jobs or starting their first one. High expectations on both sides. So it’s not hard to see that if that family style supportive culture promised at the interviews along with the welcome talks from those important people under-deliver, there will fast be disappointment. And that can cost you dearly.
Time for a few Stats
According to the Deloitte 2017 Global Human Capital Trends Survey:
- Organisational culture, engagement, and employee brand proposition remain top priorities in 2017; employee experience ranks as a major trend again this year.
- Nearly 80 percent of executives rated employee experience very important (42 percent) or important (38 percent), but only 22 percent reported that their companies were excellent at building a differentiated employee experience.
- Fifty-nine percent of survey respondents reported they were not ready or only somewhat ready to address the employee experience challenge.
It’s not all that surprising that the majority of employers are poor at creating a great employee experience. Only the most enlightened business leaders can see the ROI on great culture supported by genuine values. Most are wrapped up in issues where the payback is more tangible, easier to see and measure.
It’s time to wake up and smell the coffee
Trends show that this issue is not going away but rather becoming more important. For example, new graduates entering the workplace are no longer obsessed with just the salary and benefits package. They want to work somewhere they can share in values they believe in and a culture that supports them. And of course, if your employer’s culture is not something special, irreplaceable and distinctive, there is much less to stop you going to work somewhere else.
Worst of all is having a set of values on the website and on the walls in your meeting rooms which are largely unknown by the employees (can you recite your Company Values?), and not put into practice by management. Better to have none than to openly demonstrate ignorance or hypocrisy.
And it’s easier than ever today to find out what it’s really like working somewhere. Tools such as Glassdoor and Facebook make it very easy to see reality as opposed to what they want you to see on the website!
Every organisation should strive to be unique, even if the products and services are scarcely differentiated from competitors. In fact in this case it’s even more important. Don’t forget that your culture will shine through to customers, prospective customers, prospective employees, suppliers and everyone you deal with. It’s what makes you different. Culture often emanates from the original founder, even if they are no longer around. It’s that hard-to-describe essence that makes your place the place it is. By creating a timeless set of Values, you can capture that essence and use it make your organisation special, different and great.
Expensive if you get it wrong, valuable if you get it right
Even if you find it hard to see the tangible benefits, the costs associated with getting it wrong (poor culture, no values or redundant values) are likely to be immense:
- Higher staff turnover @ £30,000 per head
- Less motivated employees, less likely to go the extra mile
- Unsustainable customer satisfaction – if your employees are not engaged, your customers will feel this in their interactions and will be less loyal to you. Your business could die.
Try putting a price on each of these for your organisation.
Every organisation has a culture whether you like it or not. Might as well use it positively, supported by a tangible set of values, to help engage employees and customers in a sustainable way.
At amp Performance Limited, we help both public and private organisations by developing performance improvement solutions through Motivation and Incentives. We help answer people and business questions. We do this by providing services across Communication, Education, Measurement and Reward. Visit us at www.ampperformance.co.uk
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Many thanks to Adam Sidbury, Director, at ampPerformance for his time and insight into the true cost of organisational culture and values. At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communications and engagement solutions. We inspire, motivate and transform your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information on developing a well-planned on-boarding process and welcoming culture, call or email us today and let us show you how engagement can boost your organisation.