Put simply, the heart of every organization is its employees.
According to American psychologist Abraham Maslow, we, as human beings, all have the same needs. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a theory created in the 1940s which states that every individual has the following needs: “physiological”, “safety”, “belonging and love”, “esteem”, and “self-actualization”. Within these needs is a desire for meaningful connection and meaningful work.
As an employer, your ability to attract and retain talent lies in your ability to create conditions that support these needs. And it begins with positive and caring workplace culture.
Here are 4 steps on how you, as an employer, can create a positive workplace culture:
1. Accept People as They Are
When it comes to workplace culture, first and foremost, employees must feel that they are accepted for who they are regardless of origin, gender, sexual orientation or colour.
In her book Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead, author and research professor Brené Brown explains, "Belonging is the innate human desire to be part of something larger than us. Because this yearning is so primal, we often try to acquire it by fitting in and by seeking approval, which are not only hollow substitutes for belonging but often barriers to it. Because true belonging only happens when we present our authentic, imperfect selves to the world, our sense of belonging can never be greater than our level of self-acceptance.”
In other words, every employee needs to feel that they are safe and that they are seen, heard, valued and respected.
2. Incorporate Team Building
So, how exactly is workplace culture created? It’s built throughout the employee experience, employees’ interaction with one other, their managers and the company’s executives. Workplace relationships play a vital role in company culture.
In order to develop positive relationships, have employees work together to build trust and cooperation. Create projects which encourage group activity and group involvement. Interacting with co-workers not only helps create a sense of belonging but also creates trust, which is important when it comes to problem-solving.
3. Welcome Feedback
Encourage dialogue by welcoming feedback. How do you really know how your employees feel? One of the best ways of making sure every employee feels that their voice is heard is through conducting surveys and polls where employees can respond anonymously if they wish.
Through surveys, you can discover new perspectives which can serve as the basis for improvement. Regular surveys are a powerful way to gain fresh insights and measure various areas such as employee satisfaction.
4. Show Employees What They Do Matters
To ensure that employees feel that they belong to your company, they must feel they have an important role to play.
Let employees know what they do matters by demonstrating how their work contributes to the success of the company. For example, if an employee works with code, explain how the code directly contributes to the functionality of the company’s product and how the product positively impacts the life of the end-user.
Want to learn more about how to create a caring culture for your employees? Download your copy of Benify’s e-book Employee Engagement: Unlocking Your Employees’ Potential now!