For a Successful Company Culture, Aim for Better, Not Best
I won’t pretend that we’ve perfected our company culture at Nexus PMG. Seven years in, and we’re always fine-tuning. What I can say is that we aim for better, not best. Best says you’ve accomplished the goal, so starting out with that mindset is counterproductive. Better means we can always improve. We’re constantly working to be a better company.
We’re a better company, not the best.
One of the things we’re focused on is trying to implement a mindset that a good business is based on much more than just profit and loss.
A good business is more than just P/L.
Looking back historically, there is a mindset of shareholder value being the only definition of success. We believe in shareholder value, but there’s much more to a business and a culture that makes a successful company. I’ve spent a lot of time trying to carry that message forward as we build a better company around success definitions.
There is more to a successful business than simply shareholder value.
As a service-oriented business, everything comes down to people. It’s up to management to set the priorities that best serve our people because after all, our employees are our responsibility.
On paper, we can gauge the satisfaction of our employees by looking at things like retention rates. How many employees have quit? Have you built a culture of retention where people want to stay at the company? This is a big metric for me, and I think more companies should factor retention rates into their definition of success.
Do people want to work at our organization?
Innovation is the new normal for all companies in the post-COVID world, and it’s turned out to be one of our greatest assets. Do your employees feel empowered enough to say “there’s a better way to do that?”
Do our people feel inspired and supported?
In a recent employee survey, one of the questions we asked was: “What should be the deciding factor for implementing new technology?”
Most of the folks with eight to ten years of experience or more almost all responded with a resounding “ROI.”
When you looked at the younger folks, they had more thought processes around streamlining operations, the potential of learning a new skill, or opening up new business lines.
Where I think companies will struggle most with the speed at which technology is moving is in creating an environment that allows employees leeway. How do you enable your employees to spend a portion of their time where they’re going to try new things that will make the company better? We have to start with that position in mind rather than “What is the ROI on that investment?”
We have to create an environment for innovation.
Because when you have a longer view in mind, you have a longer foresight on what would happen if you implement a technology after five years. Instead of asking how we can be the best on a quarter-by-quarter basis, we look at the long-term potential.
How can we create a culture of innovation?
That’s the type of culture we’re trying to build.
Key Takeaways for Embracing Innovation and Redefining Company Success
- Embrace the mindset of being a better company, not the best.
- Understand: A good business is more than just P/L.
- Understand: There is more to a successful business than simply shareholder value.
- Ask: Do people want to work at your organization?
- Ask: Do your people feel inspired and supported?
- Understand: We have to create an environment for innovation.
Ask: How can we create a culture of innovation?