Culture Trends: Personalization, Connection, Great Work

Imagine having a company culture that not only attracts incredible talent, but also produces the kind of results that lead to strong growth and increased revenue…

For sometime we’ve thought that the secret to this kind of performance is attributable to employee engagement. But what if it’s not? What if it is actually linked to Great Work instead?

OC Tanner Institute’s 2022 Global Cultural Report found that there are 5 Trends that companies must understand, incorporate and embrace to create a strong, attractive culture in today’s marketplace.

  1. Flexibility Rules
  2. Rebuilding Connection
  3. Revisiting Engagement
  4. More personalized recognition
  5. Technology’s expanding role in building culture

This was a thought-provoking report that challenged and/or expanded some of our more familiar ideas about what’s important in company culture. One worth reading and using as a measure of how attractive your culture may be to the workforce.

My 3 biggest takeaways were:

  1. Although each of the 5 Trends is unique and addresses varying aspects of company culture, they all carry two overriding themes—one size doesn’t fit all and connection counts. Business leaders must personalize what we do for our employees. We must also ensure that people feel connected to the company and its cause. If we don’t, at the very least we will see less than optimal performance and decreased business success. At the worst we will experience great attrition and increased turnover—something that costs an average of 3x a person’s annual salary.
  2. While “Flexibility Rules” is commonly applied to the discussion around work environments—in office, remote or a hybrid, it also applies to identifying WHICH tasks are better performed in the office versus at home and then planning accordingly.
  3. In a time where ‘engagement’ is all the buzz, I found point #3 to be the most thought-provoking. It challenges the paradigm that employee engagement is a valid measure of business success, claiming that “great work” is the better indicator, leading to more innovation, greater retention, and a stronger workplace culture. It is also a more measurable metric.

The report goes on to identify 5 key skills that people who produce Great Work possess in varying degrees—They Ask the Right Question; Go and See; Talk to an Outer Circle; Improve the Mix and Deliver the Difference.

The report added that employees and leaders will possess these skills in varying degrees based on their natural behaviors. Companies who want to grow and attract good talent will do themselves a favor by integrating a behavioral awareness system into their entire employee lifecycle from attraction to exit! This is something Know Your Talents has been training companies to do for over 20 years. We know that understanding and leveraging natural behavior will lead to increased motivation, improved communication, decreased conflict, reduced turnover and great work, among other things.

Honorable Mention #4

Technology is paramount in making people’s jobs easier and cultivating a feeling a of connection. Companies must become tech savvy and willing to ensure that everything is integrated and user friendly. Companies must also make sure their technology helps people feel and remain connected through all the changes and rearranges in the work world today.

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