- Posted by admin
- On August 20, 2020
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Coronavirus continues to change the way we do business. Everything from communication to meetings to paperwork has been affected by this pandemic, and while company culture may not seem like the most important factor, it has also taken a hit. Companies whose culture was built on in-office activities, work from home perks, and happy hours have lost those things in light of remote work during the pandemic.
Luckily, your company culture can adapt to remote work, just as your business’ other practices have. Use these tips to create and maintain a remote company culture during the pandemic.
How To Build Company Culture During Coronavirus
- Define your Culture
- Implement your Values
- Find Remote Alternatives
- Consider your COVID-19 Response
- Create a Remote Community
- Hold Employees Accountable
- Ask for Feedback and Encourage Communication
Define your Culture
The first step to building company culture is to clearly define what your culture actually is. While some companies think of culture as weekly happy hours and casual Fridays, real company culture goes much deeper. Your culture should consist of shared values, attitude and personality, goals, practices, and more. Defining culture can be difficult, but once you know what you’re working towards you can begin to take concrete steps forward.
Sit down with leadership to determine what you want your company culture to look like. Consider the personality of your business and its employees, what your core values are, what kind of organizations you want to support, and what atmosphere you want in the office or in your remote meetings. Set goals for your business and consider how you will reach them while maintaining your culture and values.
Once your culture is clearly defined, you can begin working to implement that culture into your everyday practices.
Implement your Values
Implementing culture is easier said than done. When you discuss what your core culture is all about, consider how you will put those values into practice.
You can take action to uphold your values by working with or donating time, resources, or money to charitable organizations that match your ideals. Give back to your local community. Create professional development, career growth, or mentorship programs within your business. Build programs and practices that reflect your values and create the atmosphere that you want for your employees.
Find Remote Alternatives
Implementing values and offering perks to employees is easier when you’re in the office. That is the struggle that many companies are currently dealing with. There are, however, virtual alternatives that you can work towards.
If you already had a solid company culture before the pandemic, look for remote alternatives to your old practices. Those who are healthy enough may still want to work with charities or community organizations; try to organize a way to give back safely, either by enforcing social distancing and wearing masks, or by holding virtual events.
Even if everyone is working remotely, you can still create activities to bring your teams together. Instead of meeting in person for a health initiative, consider holding fitness competitions from home, where employees can win by logging the most workouts. The same idea works for book clubs or other at-home activities. Sales teams can hold sales competitions like they would in the office.
While it is undoubtedly difficult to transition your culture to a remote setting, there are ways to make it work. Look for creative remote alternatives to your normal practices and activities so that employees still benefit from a positive company culture.
Consider your COVID-19 Response
Businesses are being judged based on how they have responded to the coronavirus pandemic. While some aspects of your response are out of your control – most businesses were not fully prepared to switch to remote work so suddenly – you should consider how you’ve responded and how to continue to respond.
Will you give employees extra sick days if they catch the virus? Will you offer bereavement leave for those who lose loved ones? Have you been accommodating to parents working at home while also homeschooling their children? When employees return to the office, how will you make them feel safe? Will immunocompromised employees be allowed to continue remote work?
Consider your policies around COVID-19 and ask employees how they feel about your response to the pandemic. It’s important to be compassionate and empathetic during this unprecedented challenge, and employees will appreciate a company culture that supports them through hard times.
Create a Remote Community
One of the biggest obstacles to creating a remote culture is the lack of direct communication. While video conferencing tools like Zoom and other technologies have made communication easier, it’s still not the same as in-person meetings, water cooler chats, and face-to-face discussions.
Work to create a remote community. It isn’t easy; Zoom burnout is real, and it can be difficult to focus in Zoom meetings. The other issue is that holding virtual meetings generally means there’s only time to discuss work, with no chance to catch up or check in on one another. Creating a virtual community rather than just holding meetings can help give employees a chance to socialize the way they would in the office.
Consider creating book clubs, holding virtual happy hours, or having a standing Zoom lunch date for anyone who wants to join. Use messaging tools like Slack for shorter, easier communication. You can make channels specifically for non-work purposes like sharing recipes, stories from your day, jokes, and more.
Hold Employees Accountable
Hold employees – and leadership – accountable for building and upholding culture and values. Make sure that leadership sets the example for the right attitude and participation in activities that reinforce your culture. Encourage, but don’t force, employees to join in on virtual activities and contribute to building remote culture. Try to hold them accountable when possible by keeping honest and open communication about your culture and why their contributions are important to the company.
Ask for Feedback and Encourage Communication
Creating a company culture isn’t easy – it’s not easily measurable or solid, so it can be hard to tell how you’re doing. Ask your employees for feedback about what they like and dislike about the company and its practices and values. Encourage regular communication about employee satisfaction, and ask them what is important to them in a workplace culture.
Maintaining a positive company culture while working remotely is difficult, but not impossible. Prioritize your culture to keep employees engaged and happy – statistics show that company culture is important for candidates considering job offers, employee retention, and productivity.
Learn more about improving remote work and growing your business on our blog, or contact TalentFleX Solutions to discuss your hiring needs. Our team of recruiters can help you find the right talent to fit into your unique culture and help your company grow.