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The importance of organisational culture in business success

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A strong organisational culture is one of the most important success factors for any business. Here’s an in-depth look at what company culture is and the key benefits of building a positive environment. 

There’s a reason why top global firms — the likes of Microsoft, Apple, and Google — are always popular companies to work for. It all boils down to organisational culture, which sets companies apart from the competition. Strong company culture is also made all the more vital due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as organisations have to navigate unpredictability and prioritise adaptability and resilience. 

Organisational culture’s importance in strategic management, employee performance, and recruitment is plain to see.  Companies with robust cultures are said to experience four times more revenue growth. The 2021 Global Culture Survey by PwC reported that 69% of organisations believe culture offers a competitive advantage amid the pandemic, with 72% of leaders crediting culture for the success of their change initiatives. 

What is organisational culture?

An organisational culture defines how its employees should behave and interact with one another within the company. It is a widely shared set of beliefs and goals that influences all facets of the organisation — from how it functions to how workers feel about the company and its reputation with customers. 

The core elements that make up organisational culture include the company’s: 

  • Mission, values, and goals 

  • Leadership approach 

  • Strategic management

  • Expectations 

  • Practices 

  • Work environment 

There are many ways to create and maintain a positive organisational culture, but what matters is ensuring that all employees are on board and buy into it.

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How does a robust organisational culture benefit businesses?

1. Boost employee engagement and satisfaction

In the increasingly remote workforces of today, engaging employees and boosting morale remains a major challenge for businesses. Cultivating a workplace culture that champions collaboration and teamwork can motivate employees to do their best on the job. 

2. Attract talented workers 

Look up any article on recommended questions for candidates to ask their interviewer, and the question “What is the company culture like?” is guaranteed to appear. According to Jobvite’s 2021 Job Seeker Nation Report, 86% of employees believe workplace culture is somewhat or very important in their decision to apply for a job — and that’s despite the increase in remote working arrangements. 

A positive culture, coupled with satisfied employees, is the best recruitment ad a company can have. Faced with the choice between two equally attractive job offers, candidates are more likely to opt for the company that is a good culture-fit for their personality and goals. 

3. Elevate productivity 

Naturally, comfortable, happy, and healthy employees will translate to better overall performance. While the personal attitudes of individual employees do play a part, productivity is largely influenced by key factors such as work environment, training, processes, and employee wellness —  all of which are defined by company culture. Organisations that centre their culture around caring for employees’ wellbeing, especially in the remote workplace, tend to enjoy greater business success. 

4. Enhance employee loyalty and retention 

It goes without saying that happy workers are less likely to jump ship, and more invested in contributing to the company’s overall success. Valuing and recognising employees for their contributions fosters a strong sense of loyalty to the company. 

Plus, with lower turnover rates, companies can also save precious time and money in the hiring process — money that can be used to invest in employee development instead. One example of this in action is DHL Express, which consistently ranks as one of the best workplaces in Australia and the world. Recognised for its high-trust, high-performance culture, DHL Express continues to invest in its employees each year, rolling out thoughtful initiatives that foster compassion and commitment in teams.