By 4.3 min readPublished On: October 30, 2017

The key to a successful business stems from the core.  From big to small, your company growth relies heavily on developing a strong company culture that will attract customers, engage with employees and ultimately enable better decision-making.  Having a strong brand culture with a unique, distinctive ethos will set you apart from the competition.  The building blocks from which your company stems its strategy and operations relies on this culture, and helps turn your dream into a reality.  Not to mention, when you do that something extra special, you are sure to attract attention and draw in more customers.
Look at respected brands like Zappos, Disney, Virgin & Google. They have become well known because of their distinctive cultures.  These companies are all respected for their thriving and sought-after corporate cultures – cultures that customers and employees are falling in love with, which helps to drive business success.
We are going to let you in on a little secret. Here are 5 tips to help you on creating a winning culture.
1.  Learn from the past.
Everyone has a past, and with that past comes good and bad experiences that have taught you lessons.  As a first-time business owner, make sure to examine the corporate cultures of organizations you previously worked for. What worked for you in those cultures? What didn’t? If you’re an experienced entrepreneur, think about the cultures you have already created successfully at previous business. What fostered the success of these?  How can you implement them in your new business?
2.  Aligning your values
Congratulations business owner – you’ve just been put in the driver’s seat, and everyone drives differently.  No one way is better than the other.  So most importantly, you need to marry who you are with what you do. Otherwise, it won’t work.  You are going to be eating, sleeping and breathing your business, so make sure you’re on the same page with it.  Think of being in a relationship with someone who has different values – it doesn’t work.  What makes you, you, and what are your core values?  Are you structured and precise? Are you free and creative? Do you prefer a work hard, play hard mentality? Or are you relaxed and trustworthy, but expect the best from people?   You need to create an environment that suits you, and then cultivate that behavior in your company and promote the people who embody it.  Take time to reflect on who you are, the vibe you want to release, and ultimately, the kind of culture that fits both you and your brand.
3.  Get to know your employees
It is important to engage your culture with your employees.  Making yourself personally accessible to your employees will help keep your company culture strong. Ask them about their lives with genuine interest and active listening. Socialize with them and you’ll have an open, respectful and positive company culture.  In an industry with such high employee turnover rates, restaurants need to do all they can to retain and motivate their staffs. A strong culture is more effective than just free food and other common perks. In many cases it is even more effective than higher pay rates and better benefits. That’s because leaders can use the company culture to connect employees to a higher purpose, and to each other.
4.  Communicate
We get it, being a manager isn’t for everyone.  They can’t and probably shouldn’t be transparent about everything with their employees.   Overall, it benefits managers more if they openly discuss strategies, whether they involve single departments or the whole company. In addition, managers should meet regularly with their employees to discuss their progress, ambitions and talk about how they can improve. This helps employees feel like they’re an important part of organization’s success.  They know what they are doing well, and what they can improve on.
5.  Think outside the box
Did you know that employees at Google can collect “massage credits” which can be cashed in for free massages? It’s definitely financially out of the league for most businesses to offer these types of benefits, but these are the ideas we are talking about. Get creative!
It’s imperative that companies take time to evaluate their workplace cultures and make changes, and, when necessary, to allow those cultures to breath and scale as the company does.  Ever hear the saying “Happy wife happy life?” Well it definitely transfers over to Happy employees, happy business, and happy customers.  Company culture should be a priority focus for restaurateurs. It’s the most effective way to offset the costs and complexities that are constantly increasing in every part of a business—and it’s a powerful way to build a brand.
Like our tips or want to hear more? Drop us a line @ [email protected].
See you next week!
Your devoted hostess,
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