Companies can do a lot to improve the culture within their office walls from offering competitive perks to implementing strong values.
Although internal culture is the foundation laid out by employers, it is up to employees to make it thrive.
Why is it so important for employees to put in the grunt work? A good work culture is most beneficial for the actual cogs in the system, or the employees who keep things running, says Leslie Caccamese, director of marketing and research at Great Place to Work, a consulting and training firm aimed at sustaining great workplaces.
We spoke to Caccamese about the three things employees can do to make their second home a great place to work:
1. Participate in the perks offered.
You can’t sit around wishing you worked in a better work culture if you don’t participate in it, says Caccamese. This means that if your company sponsors a 5K run, you should participate in it.
2. Get involved.
The more you feel like your voice is heard, the more you will feel a responsibility and commitment to the company. How do you make your voice heard? Caccamese advises to get involved with teams that contribute to strategic planning, creating events or charitable initiatives, and even participating in referral programs for new hires.
“When everyone feels a responsibility for perpetuating the culture, the culture thrives,” she says.”When employees expect that the culture is something that is given to them, it fails.”
3. Trust your colleagues.
“High trust relationships are the foundation of every great workplace,” says Caccamese. “That means that executives walk the talk and share information and involve employees in decision making. Everyone is given opportunities to advance, promotions and pay are given fairly, and employees enjoy a family feel.”
Employees need to be able to trust that their colleagues have your best interest in mind. This means depending on one another and valuing each other’s work and contributions. There shouldn’t be too much competition between the workers or they won’t feel like they are on the same team. At the end of the day, the company needs to feel like one entity moving toward a single goal together, says Caccamese.
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