These days, companies are quickly judged on their actions and results. Consumers don’t really care what a company might intend, they want to know what it’s actually doing to get there, and what it stands for before they support it. A company with a strong culture centered on innovation and their employees is far likely to be supported by consumers than one that is more corporate focused and self-centered.
According to the Edelman Earned brand study conducted in 2017, nearly a third of consumers stated that they make purchasing decisions based on their belief system more often than they did even just three years ago. Some two-thirds of Millennials fall in this category, saying they’re willing to switch brands or go as far as boycotting a brand if it doesn’t follow their own ideology.
Think about Google, why is it consistently being praised for its culture? It’s one that promotes happiness in the workplace and gets employees excited about going to work there. In fact, Google even has its own “happiness officer.” The company knows what they’re doing, as happy employees tend to be healthier employees, taking fewer sick days, as multiple research has shown. They also tend to be more motivated to be there, more productive and more creative.
Companies with happier employees have been found to outpace their competition by 20%, likely because:
- Consumers tend to trust them more, believing in their brand
- Employees truly want to be at work, and are motivated to do what’s best for the company
- Absenteeism is low, productivity is high and lots of creative ideas get floated around
So how can you create a strong company culture that promotes happiness within as well as a better brand image?
Talk to Your Employees
The first step to strengthening company culture is to speak with your employees to find out what they truly value. Ask questions to discover what aspects of current company culture mean the most and which can be improved, as well as requesting suggestions for how to achieve that. Implement follow-up through brief weekly check-ins, perhaps using some type of instant-messaging program to gather employee sentiments and ideas.
Offer Extra Perks
Creating a stronger culture by keeping employees happy may be easier than you think. Companies like
Google and Facebook provide lots of extra perks, but they don’t have to take a huge chunk out of profits. One of the most popular perks among employees is some type of food program that helps to make their lives healthier and happier. A study in 2015 found that the “key to happiness” among company culture was free snacks, and that it may even lure more employees to companies too, with nearly half of respondents noting that if they were looking for a new job, they’d weigh company perks like availability of snacks in their decision. Office snack delivery may even be one of the most convenient, inexpensive ways to help improve company culture. There are lots of other things you can do as well, such as contributing to employee fitness programs, providing travel stipends and paid time off for volunteering.
Stronger Corporate Culture = Stronger Brand Image
The stronger your corporate culture, the stronger your brand image, something to think about in every aspect of the company, when speeches are made, seminars are conducted, or simply when writing a newsletter to customers. It helps to create a more authentic, transparent aura that’s essential for a good reputation, ultimately improving marketing and the company’s bottom line.