Building a Strong Corporate Culture

It’s good when senior executives at a company feel a responsibility to build a strong corporate culture. This includes not just human resources execs but CEOs and other “top brass” – including accountants.

A recent survey of chief financial officers (CFO) by staffing firm Robert Half found that 51 percent of CFOs said they play at least some role in shaping corporate culture.

CFOs don’t usually “mingle” with employees outside their department to the same extent that other executives do, so it’s a true sign of responsibility to the firm – and its mission – that these executive believe they are contributing to building corporate culture.

Executives reported taking several steps, including using their firm’s values to guide their actions and helping develop the organization’s mission and define the desired environment.

Robert Half offers these tips for building a strong corporate culture:

  • Tell employees why their work matters. Make sure you or management talk to staff about how they contribute to the company’s success. People want to know how they make a difference, which will help them stay focused on your firm’s key objectives.
  • Say “thank you.”Foster a culture of appreciation, where people see their work is recognized. In the process, you’ll reinforce the level of expected performance.
  • Give people tools to advance. Invest in training and develop career paths, including identifying specific support the company can offer to help employees meet their individual and team goals.
  • Keep staff updated on financial performance. Employees are interested in hearing how your firm is doing. Leaving them in the dark can lead to stress, disengagement and speculation.
  • Turn jobs into careers. People want to enjoy where they work. Show them how they can succeed at your organization, and conduct team-building activities that allow colleagues to develop stronger ties.

One other thing: don’t just say ‘thank you’ with memos; get out and meet your teammates from time to time. It’s a great feeling when a senior manager – especially one you don’t even report to – comes by and thanks you for your work.


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