Organizational culture is an important aspect of any business. It defines brand identity and helps to attract top talents. How is an organizational culture different from startup culture? How to foster it? Find the answers to these questions in the following article. Read on.
How to foster a startup culture? – table of contents:
What is organizational culture?
Organizational culture can be defined as a set of all values and norms that guide and inform the actions of all team members. It is based on the organization’s cherished beliefs, customs and principles.
Regardless of the structure or form of business, both the bosses and the employees should build an organizational culture in line with the set goals. In this way, it becomes easier to focus on truly relevant activities and get rid of undesirable attitudes towards certain responsibilities.
Organizational culture is as important as a business strategy itself. An established code of conduct represents a company’s identity. Clearly set principles increase employees’ job satisfaction and attract the best talents to the organization.
Although startups often have small teams, especially in the early stages of development, they, like larger companies, need a well-built organizational culture. Regardless of the size of the workforce, it always helps to integrate them, bringing them closer to the goals and mission of a particular business. Also, the very language of communication between them becomes more unified, and, aware of their responsibilities, employees become even more committed to their work.
Since startups differ from other companies, their organizational cultures are also different from those implemented by the world’s biggest corporations. In startups, founders tend to move away from the existing norms. Instead, they put more emphasis on training employees and increasing their job satisfaction. They assume the role of a visionary who uses the best methods for achieving common goals. In this way, they motivate employees and inspire them.
Most startups rely on trained people who create a solid team. Promoting teamwork enables a more efficient flow of information and the effective exchange of knowledge, which further increases the chances of introducing the innovative solutions that every startup strives for.
Nowadays, building an organizational culture that ensures attractive working conditions also serves the function of an advertisement that encourages top talents to start working for a given startup. A workplace with a friendly atmosphere increases the productivity of the team and proves that the officially shared values also apply in the real world.
Building a startup culture that focuses on people allows startups to enhance employees’ freedom, motivating them to think creatively. What is more, a startup’s unique vision often sparks interest in the job market. However, it is important to remember that it is the precise mission that gives a realistic picture of the duties or requirements of a specific position.
How to create organizational culture?
Even without clearly established principles, every company develops in the spirit of certain norms and rules. Organizational culture brings them together, and in this way has an influence on the day-to-day operation of the entire startup, while shaping the business strategy itself.
As the startup grows, its structure, key objectives and forms of cooperation change. Due to new responsibilities, founders start hiring new people, dynamically reshaping the team. In the face of emerging challenges, organizational culture is a kind of norm representing the nature of a particular business.
Such a solution facilitates the adaptation of new employees and constantly reminds those already employed what is truly important. As a result, the risk of creating a business based on the work of people who blindly follow orders they do not understand is minimized.
Organizational culture is a key reference point that facilitates communication at various levels and improves the cohesion of the entire organization. Thus, it can be concluded that it is a valuable management tool, positively influencing the creation of a friendly working atmosphere. A sense of strong integration even in a complex environment and belonging to the startup itself, motivates employees to achieve key business goals to a greater extent.
Therefore, a strong organizational culture, being a guidepost for employees, should clearly define the startup’s main goals and values that enable them to be achieved. In this way, everyone, regardless of their position or function, is guided in the same direction.
At the same time, the values guiding the business must not be present only in a written form. It is crucial to communicate with them and follow them during daily activities. The way the information is exchanged among employees, the logo and other graphic aspects related to the startup or even the design of the office are all part of the organizational culture.
Startup founders who require their colleagues to follow certain rules must also follow them themselves. When creating an organizational culture, it is important to first think about what you ultimately want to achieve and how you want your business to be perceived in the market. A thorough understanding of the essence of the business is the first step to building a valuable startup culture that unites employees and even potential customers into a strongly integrated community.
You’ve just learned how to foster startup culture. Read also: 7 startup roles explained.