Every business and Non-Profit knows the COVID-19 crisis has been a force for change, actually more of an interruption. ​
Now how much of this change is temporary and how much long term? Many businesses are already transforming business practices to main stabilization.​
Now can there be a stable environment? Time will tell, but we need to be prepared for what is coming, and from my perspective Environment for growth in your business is one of the topmost. ​
So many organizations that did not have the environment that cultivated growth are seeing that there is diminished loyalty, those organizations that invested in their employees, stuck with them through thick and thin and now experiencing new growth, new ideas, yes new challenges but many are able to take those challenges and turn them into opportunities. ​
So think long term.​
I have been in organizations where the growth was not encouraged and others where growth was not only encouraged but the company invested in its employees and I have seen the differences. Its day and night.​
An environment of growth and that culture gave the employees a sense of ownership and they gave all they could and then more. ​
A company’s culture is a set of shared values, attitudes, goals, and practices. By defining our culture we can begin to better support the employees, improve operations, support the working environment and make valued contributions.​
Assess Your Current Environment​
• Is the current environment conducive for growth?​
• What are you doing to encourage the growth environment?​
• This is the time to invest in your and your business’s future.​
Change your Environment & Change yourself​
• Make everyone a thought leader​
• Invest in yourself and your employees ​
• Invest in better systems​
• Cross-training – Encourage your employees to get to learn about other areas of business​
• Encourage and reward teamwork​
Create a Growth Culture​
• Environment that feels safe ​
• Continuous feedback​
• Get the right people on your bus – Talk about DISC​
• Lead by Example​
3 Factors Affecting Business Growth​
Success requires effort and action. So where should you focus your energy?​
Commitment to Employee Training​
Business growth doesn’t occur in a vacuum. All your employees must have a standard baseline of knowledge from which they cultivate their own growth. This requires an online training platform that meets your needs today and can grow with you. By training online, you ensure consistent knowledge transfer to everyone and you can customize learning paths for each employee.​
Just like what we see in nature during springtime, growth starts way below the surface. How your employees perceive you and your company mission determines their motivation to help you reach your goals. As a leader, you must pave the way to success for everyone.​
Why is leadership important. See it flows from top to bottom… the employees have to first buy into you and then your mission and vision. ​
If you are not able to convince the employees to buy into you rest is worthless as that will not set an environment for growth. ​
Three important things to set in the early stages​
Mission – It provides purpose answering the question why​
​Vision – provides picture – answering the question what​
Strategy – provides a plan – answering the question how​
So a leader you need to live your vision.​
Employees can’t positively contribute to your culture if they don’t know what it is or supposed to be. Take the time to train your team in your mission and core values. ​
Ensure that everyone is on the same page regarding what’s expected of team members, how these values will guide the company and, above all else, why they matter.​
Providing meaning not only helps employees understand the importance of upholding values, but also incentivizes positive behavior. Knowing how every action contributes to broader goals fosters a cohesive, mission-driven culture.​
Make everyone a thought leader​
Invest in yourself and your employees ​
Invest in better systems​
Cross-training – Encourage your employees to get to learn about other areas of business​
Encourage and reward teamwork​
In addition to leading by example, reinforce positive behaviors by recognizing and rewarding your culture catalysts. These are the individuals who continually live out your core values and go the extra mile for your organization.​
Create employee spotlights about standout contributors and engage your HR department to implement an employee recognition program.​
Create a platform for peer-to-peer shout-outs.​
Additionally, promote from within whenever possible. Doing so rewards long-term top performers, fosters career growth, and improves the efficiency of your recruitment process. ​ ​
Let’s face it, as your company grows and changes, so will your culture. This will happen naturally as new faces join your team, but you should be prepared to make purposeful adjustments. ​
Encouraging and cultivating a culture that pursues alongside business growth is a recipe for multiple levels of success. A Non Profit that clearly cares about the personal development of its employees will have a more engaged workplace, which directly links employee performance and profitability over time.​
Communication is equally important. If you don’t know why you get out of bed each day to go to work, neither will anyone else. Tell everyone what you value, why you value it, and make sure you actively follow through by acting upon it. In return, you will have a company full of people who will be more likely to return the favor. ​
Clearly, personal growth and development are important in the workplace. So how can you go about weaving this mindset into the day-to-day?​
An environment where employees are scared to share their thoughts and ideas out of fear of rejection is not the type of culture that will foster personal growth. Therefore, it is up to leaders within the business to establish an environment where everyone is heard and appreciated.​
Encouraging feedback is a great way to start honest conversations between employees and management. This can be done with online tools, such as short opinion surveys or programs that ask everyone to anonymously share their thoughts for organizational improvement.​
Of course, be sure that this fosters positive encouragement and is not used as an opportunity to tear down or point fingers at others. Instead, it should be a chance for encouragement, recognition, and suggestions that are helpful and positive.​
Culture is set by leaders, maintained by employees, and monitored by HR. ​
However, setting values and a mission statement is merely half the battle; modeling the behaviors you want is the other. Culture is not something to set and forget, and culture is particularly susceptible to change as your team grows. Reinforce value-based actions and a mission-driven culture by continually embodying the core values you set forth at the start.​