Companies spend an enormous amount of money mapping out customer touch points but why is the same approach not applied to employees?
Take a moment to consider charismatic leaders who have an uncompromising vision of shaping a value and culture driven organisation: Zappos and Tony Hsieh, Apple and (the late) Steve Jobs, Google and Larry Page, Wegmans Food Market and Danny Wegman, Recreational Equipment Inc. and Jerry Stritzke , Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants and Bill Kimpton, Hollard and Nick Kohler...
What do these visionaries all have in common? They are renowned icons, who believed that an engaging brand experience for their staff was vital for the success of their organisation. Chances are that those enduring and strong internal cultures did not happen simply by chance, but rather by design. Ultimately, this formulates the fundamental essence of a company's culture.
But, how does one define and entrench the "right" strong internal culture?
The Google Office in ABC-Straße 19, 20354 Hamburg, Deutschland. Wherever the Google office is situated, in whatever country, the vision of the company's Larry Page is very likely to be much in evidence. (Image: Sebastian Wallroth, via Wikimedia Commons)
I recently read an article where the author spent an inordinate amount of time explaining why companies should be focussing more on ensuring that employees "live the values" as opposed to offering them "great" perks. What struck me was that the author never mentioned how employees would willingly make that mental switch to embracing the company values?
I don't believe that something as innate as a value can be dictated to an individual. It should rather be adopted by the subtle influencers of their surroundings. In other words, in order to drive behavioural change in the workplace, all the areas of influence that an employee is immersed in on a daily basis need to be considered. The acid test is to see if employees "rave" about their company and its culture in their private time. After all, a happy employee is a loyal employee.
HKLM's approach to mapping out and identifying employee touch points include (but are not limited to) the following:
Designing an employee value proposition
The interview process
The induction process
HR process and procedures
The work environment (testing all 5 senses)
Work processes and procedures
Leadership and management visibility and decisions
Company Social events
There is no quick win-win solution. However, there are countless case studies that demonstrate that a great enduring culture often results in better financial returns and strong brand equity.
Every organisation has the potential to be great - it starts with designing your employee touch points that are tailored with your unique vision to deliver an iconic culture that can join the ranks of the companies listed above. Interested?
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