Building Employee Engagement with a Winning Culture

Building Employee Engagement with a Winning Culture

AnnaMaria Gallozzi

A lack of clear company culture can negatively affect recruiting and retaining key staff.

At HireBetter, we pride ourselves on identifying the right talent and skill sets for our clients. We submerge ourselves in the culture of our client companies to better understand the part of the talent equation not directly related to experience or qualifications. In our experience, company cultures that foster teamwork give candidates a key reason to join (or remain part of) the team. The lack of the right kind of culture is a red flag that often times causes candidates to pause and take another offer.

I recently had the opportunity to meet with 20 of the Austin Business Journal’s Best Places to Work companies. All of them praised their culture for the reason they are successful at recruiting and retaining top talent. Many companies believe that a highly competitive package is the only thing that top talent care about, when in actuality that may help attract the talent, but may not help retain the right people.

Companies that understand the importance of culture are more successful in retaining and cultivating great talent. Most people work 40+ hours a week, seeing their co-workers, clients, and vendors more than their family or friends. It is very important to retention that employees enjoy where they work, and culture is the main factor in employee engagement.

The three examples that follow are business that put culture first, and the by-product is faster and more sustainable growth.

ScaleFactor’s Winning Culture

ScaleFactor, an accounting and finance software company, provides a great example of a winning culture. Since the company’s foundation, the team gets together every Friday to talk about the “wins” for the week. Wins for the team are relative, from “I didn’t get soaked in the rain” to “we launched a new product.”

Regardless of the win, the mission of the meeting is to end the week with positive reflection so that the team will be excited to come to work on Monday! It really works for ScaleFactor and their employees. They also have other culture-related perks, like the flexibility to telecommute if a day of quiet work is needed, and well-behaved pets are welcome in the office.

Like many companies these days, ScaleFactor learned that in order to retain the people who are key to the company’s success, you must find ways to make the culture attractive as well as beneficial to the company as a whole.

Leadership Training at Hayes Software

Leadership training is a relatively new concept. For a long time, leadership was thought to be an innate trait. Now, companies understand that leadership can be learned – and taught to everyone in the company.

Hayes Software trains for leadership by allowing a different team member to manage each monthly staff meeting. This allows the employee to learn the ins and outs of the company, and experience leading the meeting for the rest of the team. Hayes is empowering staff members to grow – often times out of their comfort zone – and showing all employees they are valued and not just a number. Leadership training makes for stronger employees, which in turn makes the company stronger overall.

MUBs at YouEarnedIt

YouEarnedIt, a leading employee engagement tool, sends one of the strongest messages to their employees: “we put you first.”

One way they succeed at company culture is what they call a MUB. MUB stands for “make us better.” MUBs are quarterly, one-on-one meetings with the company’s Director of Human Resources, Kim. She holds these solution-oriented meetings to learn how the company can constantly improve.

Employees talk about how they are doing, how they feel about the company, their personal lives and more, so it becomes a great place to connect to every individual. After Kim and the employee come up with a solution to an issue, that team member can share the solution at a company-wide meeting. By doing this, the company becomes more transparent and employees feel more invested in helping the company grow.

Scale Factor, Hayes Software, and YouEarnedIt have award-winning cultures and a high retention rate. These companies pride themselves on engaging their employees in ways that make both the employee and the company stronger. By investing in great people, the company benefits from lower turnover rates, a more collaborative environment, and a great reputation in the market – resulting in a higher ROI.

Most CEOs will say their key objective is to grow their company and make it more profitable. A great culture can help companies get there faster because it facilitates attracting and keeping great talent. Having a team culture allows employees to be more invested in the company because they feel the company has invested in them. Culture is not something that can wait. And, as a leader, it starts with modeling behavior and being the person you want to see in your employees.

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