Some companies have chosen to label their employees something other than employees. They call them team members, associates or other more endearing and personalized names and titles. With a little creativity, you can come up with a title for your employees, or even specific jobs, that can have a positive effect on the culture and experience that both the employees and your customers have with your organization.
The emergence of social networking and the Internet has caused a new focus and value on “openness,” which leads to a new element of leadership, called “Open Leadership.” The mantra of open leadership is “Be Open, Be Transparent, and Be Authentic.” This is counter to the traditional business premise of “control,” so many companies are still pushing back.
In order to be a great leader, you have got to be a great role model. Managers often forget that their staff watches their behavior and uses it to guide their own reactions. So what characteristics should the role model of a business—or a non-profit, for that matter—have?
From Edison to Jobs to Winfrey, pioneering innovators know how to enroll a team that creates and then supports big ideas. They have learned to create organizations that literally pull great ideas through the ranks instead of empowering people to straight-arm them.
Building an organization culture that is based on trust and collaboration starts with leadership. You need to follow through with what you say and be accountable for your actions—or your team will lose faith in your word and ability to be an effective leader.
A culture that encourages and rewards growth can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. When you build an organization, the right emphases and values can be a strong factor for growth. It requires every member of the team, from top to bottom, to buy into the right principles and beliefs.
Any time you get a group of people together, there are bound to be misunderstandings and disagreements. How you handle these situations is important for a strong corporate culture. The Reasonable Person Principle is a simple but effective approach to building a culture of trust.
Encouraging independent thinking among your team members will generate new ideas and give everyone a stake in your business’s success. To make it happen, you must be willing to listen and engage with everyone, taking advantage of the different experiences and perspectives of your team members.
Do you know what your business stands for? Do your team members? Do your customers? A great corporate culture is an important contributor to a business’s success, and documenting your philosophy is a foundational step. Then you need to communicate it to everyone and make sure you uphold it.
Your corporate culture is only as strong as the people you put on your team. And when you have just a few employees, each one is even more important. When it comes time to hire, make sure to look at how potential employees fit with your culture just as much as you look at skills and experience.
Small Biz Club is the premier destination for small business owners and entrepreneurs. To succeed in business, you have to constantly learn about new things, evaluate what you’re doing, and look for ways to improve—that’s what we’re here to help you do.