People frequently ask me to describe the company culture at Emergenetics. More than anything, it is about the WE. By WE, I refer to “Whole Emergenetics,” our term for the representation of all Emergenetics Thinking Attributes and all thirds of Behavioral Spectrum within a collection of individuals. Using a WEapproach allows employees to work within their preferred roles and ultimately makes for a more positive and productive environment.
Through our global work, we’ve found that company culture is typically the strongest when each individual feels aligned with a company climate. If you are familiar with Emergenetics, you know we advocate the use of a WEteam or a WEapproach to overcoming challenges by ensuring cognitive diversity. This concept is also key for company culture. In fact, this is where it truly shines. Great things happen when the collective group respects individual differences and appreciates the important role that others play in the overall group dynamic.
Employees often ask: Does a company culture resonate with me? Am I engaged with the overall vision? Are my thoughts and opinions heard and appreciated? The answer to these questions can frequently mean the difference between a successful employee eager to contribute, and a disgruntled employee who is simply going through the motions.
There are many things that can contribute to a good company culture; here are four aspects that I believe are paramount:
1. Respect The Individual
People appreciate being valued for their unique contributions to a situation, and, as Daniel Pink recently theorized in Drive, this is generally an employee’s number one motivation to work. The Dalai Lama was recently quoted as saying, “Everyone is born into the world as a person, and everyone leaves the world as a person. Yet we have the tendency to forget that fact when interacting with others.”
This idea sounds simple, but I find it especially true at work. In our office, we deliberately know and reference the Emergenetics Profiles of every team member, as it provides an easy framework to best show respect and appreciation during the interaction process.
2. Positive Environment
Studies show that a positive work environment affects the brain, increases employee engagement, and that people are generally happier while at work. According to Shawn Achor, a positive psychology expert and bestselling author of The Happy Secret to Better Work, “When we are positive, our brains become more engaged, creative, motivated, energetic, resilient, and productive at work.”
3. Clear Goals and Provide Regular Encouragement
Individuals appreciate knowing where they stand and how their personal contributions impact the whole. Establishing achievable goals, particularly together, means you’re both on the same page about what is expected and how they can contribute. Having measurable steps means you can routinely gauge their progress and provide consistent encouragement.
Remember that people usually appreciate timely feedback. If they are struggling to meet their goal, chances are they will want to address this as soon as possible, as opposed to only hearing about it at their annual review. Additionally, being recognized for a significant contribution is likely to have a more positive impact on the individual if it is done within a few days of achieving the accomplishment.
4. Engage Beyond Work
Find ways to engage with each other beyond work. At Emergenetics, we have a monthly staff celebrations in a non-work environment. Sometimes we go bowling, other times we watch a movie, and occasionally, if the weather is nice, we’ll have a BBQ lunch. The point is to come together more as people than co-workers and to get to know each other at a deeper level. It may only be an hour or two, but for us, it helps to promote our value of family and build camaraderie.
Our belief is that company culture drives engagement- engagement drives performance- and performance drives business results.
Recently, we were named a 2014 Colorado Company to Watch. We were incredibly honored to receive such a wonderful distinction, and, to celebrate, our entire US office attended the awards gala where we officially received the award. This was very important to us, as we earned this award together and it all started with a foundation centered on an effective and uplifting culture.
With Emergenetics as your common language, you have a tool by which you can transform you company culture and ultimately drive results.