Cultivate a Rewarding Business Culture

Have you watched peoples’ faces when they talk about their “dream” job? Sure, it may include above average pay and vacation time. But that’s not really where their enthusiasm stands out. Peoples’ smiles broaden as they talk about a positive business culture that includes: respect, the potential to grow, and having their efforts supported. They’ll often talk about the importance of making meaningful contributions.

You realize how much your employees value being in a workplace where they are appreciated. This in turn is a source of motivation. The question is: How does a business cultivate a strong, values-based culture that offers intrinsic and extrinsic rewards?

Avoid Cookie-Cutter Business Culture Approaches

Some ideas and actions are shallow because they fail to thoughtfully build long-term enrichment and engagement. Some pitfalls include:

  • Displaying values statements without actualizing them during interactions with employees and customers.
  • Using passé jargon terms that do not match your quality work standard.
  • Culture-building strategies that are not applied to all departments and customers.

Begin with Where You are Today

Assess your current culture to plan for tomorrow. Circulate throughout offices and departments, listening and observing.

  • Take note of employees’ interactions.
  • Do you see company values in action? Where and how often?
  • Do you observe interactions and practices that are concerning?
  • Use these above points, and others, to engage staff in a dialogue about company culture.
  • Gather ideas for cultivating a work culture that employees will embrace and respect.

Move on from There

More than likely, you have learned that employees want to feel valued and trusted. You cultivate a rewarding culture as you:

  • Share business values and plans with employees and stakeholders. Keep these central in messages and conversations.
  • Act on your business values! Reaching out with genuine gratitude and encouragement makes staff feel recognized for their efforts.
  • Enact measures that promote work/life balance and employee wellbeing. Doing so underscores your respect for peoples’ commitment to the organization.
  • Adopt and implement policies that boost employee confidence. Focus especially on those that encourage cooperation, collaboration, and personal development.
  • Authentically demonstrate your work and community values. This encourages others to do the same.


Employers, you may also find 5 Low Cost Ways to Keep Employee Retention High helpful.