Company culture guides the behaviours and attitudes of employees. As Frances Frei and Anne Morriss put it: “Culture guides discretionary behavior and it picks up where the employee guide leaves off.”
This means that a strong company culture is especially important when the team is working remotely.
A positive company culture results in enthusiastic, happy and productive employees leading to successful overall company performance.
Signs of a positive company culture
- People have heard about the company culture and are waiting in line to join the company.
- Low employee turnover. Employees have no intention of leaving the company and have been with the company for a long period of time.
- Enthusiastic, focussed employees who enjoy working together.
- Employees have a sense of job security.
- Employees easily encourage and congratulate each other if there is a success.
- There is trust and honesty among the employees and they assist each other in finding solutions as a team.
- There is an open communication environment which is essential for a positive company culture.
How to build and nourish a positive company culture with a remote team
A company culture is often established by the personal values of the founders or top management of a company and becomes ingrained in the goings-on within the organisation. This means that interaction with these managers will solidify the culture on various company levels, making communication a vital key for successful remote teams.
Make the company policy, vision, values and direction highly visible and easily accessible to all employees.
Set regular meetings with the team to discuss what the team is working on, cover any decisions that may affect the team, provide feedback, share news and encourage and motivate the team.
Appreciate and reward great work by complimenting and praising your employees in virtual meetings. This will boost your employees morale and motivate them to perform even better in the future while reinforcing the positive company culture.
Where an office environment might have a gathering place where employees catch up (known as the “watercooler effect”), you can encourage a virtual ‘hangout’ where this can still be done. Use this opportunity to get to know your employees and colleagues better in an informal setting which helps to grow a positive culture with a remote team. See the article on well being of remote workers for more detail on the importance of socialising.
Feedback to employees when their behaviour, language, tone or any other outcome may be counter company culture. If you can help employees put language to culture it helps them understand it better when working remotely.
Have in-office days when possible. These in-office days reinforce a positive culture, particularly with new and young employees.
Building and nourishing a positive company culture is one of the most worthwhile investments a company can make. A positive company culture results in happy employees with increased productivity and efficiency and enhances retention of the workforce.
RecruitMyMom has developed a remote working series to support employers with their transition to a more remote workforce. To view all the articles in this series, click here.