By Connor Joyce, DLE Marketing Intern, Finance and Marketing Major at the Whitman School of Management, Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY
Spurred by the question “How is your company creating a workplace culture where people want to stay?” more than 30 attendees representing Fortune 500 companies, major non-profit organizations, government and small businesses shared their experiences on the hottest workplace challenge at the Oct. 15 DLE Culture Chat.
The virtually moderated discussion generated numerous takeaways on how an organization can strengthen workplace culture. Here are some key outtakes accompanied by comments from the session:
Lead by Example
Authenticity matters in the words and actions of those at the top of an organization. Employees are looking for alignment. If senior leaders’ talk isn’t underscored by meaningful actions, culture suffers. When employees genuinely believe that those who establish the culture believe in and uphold the culture, they are more likely to be engaged and supportive. “Starting with the interview process, you need to look for consistencies in what people say.”
Open, multi-directional communication builds bonds by promoting conversations and feedback. Team members want opportunities to be heard and have their ideas and perspectives respected. Managers need to take intentional action to ask for feedback and listen. “You need to try new things that build connections.” “Create an inclusive work environment where staff are encouraged to participate.”
Trust and Transparency
The concept of mutual trust must be real and evident. As one participant explained, “Once I stopped feeling empowered or trusted, I lost my motivation and eventually decided to leave my company.”
Opportunities for Growth and Wellness
Attendees unanimously agreed on the need for active promotion of professional growth, DEI (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion) initiatives and wellness programs in organizations. These are must-have dynamics for a magnetic culture. Organizations need to recognize, respect and reward the actions of their employees as they work through the constant and stressful changes of the pandemic-ravaged workplace. “I would like to explore concrete ways I can help organizations implement strategies to increase wellbeing in the workplace–it’s clearly much needed right now!”
Click here to watch program highlights on the DLE YouTube Channel. 100% of attendees rated their experience “definitely worthwhile.” “Culture is important to everybody,” summed up an attendee.