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By Scott Murray, Director of Talent Acquisition

 

I’m back with more insights on company culture and branding! My last post discussed how employee branding matters during the recruitment process and how organizations need to be transparent about the culture. Given that over a third of potential hires will turn down job offers if the current culture does not align with them, having a great company culture that aligns with your desired talent is crucial to you organization’s success. So how does a company go about changing its organizational culture to attract the desired new talent and improve the overall experience for existing employees?

The first step is to look inward and elicit the help of current associates. They are intimately aware of the great parts of the company culture and collectively have a good idea of what is preventing the firm from transforming to the culture leadership desires. The feedback executive leadership receives might not be what they want to hear, but it is important for them to listen to what their associates are saying.

The second step is for both leadership and team members to develop a plan together. Many times, leadership will develop the plan forward without further consulting with the rest of the team. To get true buy in, a group must hammer out how to proceed. Not everyone needs to agree with every part of the plan, but they do need to understand the reasoning behind choosing to not incorporate certain ideas. Knowing they have been heard will go a long way to ensuring they buy into the plan forward and will stick to the plan even as challenges may arise.

Step three – implementation – is always the hardest part. Ensure leadership receives regular feedback from everyone on where changes happen successfully and what needs to be improved. Anonymous surveys can be used, or directly speak to the team if that level of trust already exists. It is important to not get angry or defensive with anyone who provides feedback that is not liked by the leaders implementing the changes – remember feedback is necessary for understanding and future change!

Another great option during step three is to actively hire new associates and leaders who align with the new, evolving company culture. Give them ownership to help drive the change within the organization. It is important to be transparent with them about the amount of work and time it will take to realize the benefits of a new culture but that the company is committed to making the change.

Step Four – Once the new culture is achieved, which will take considerable time, it’s important to stay vigilant, keeping the company from falling back into old habits. We are creatures of habit and old habits are easy to fall back on. If anyone sees these habits returning, it is important everyone feels empowered to point them out no matter where they occur.