Question: I enjoyed your article on corporate culture in the July 21 issue of Small Business Times. As the human resources manager for a local financial institution, I see the importance of culture in creating a successful workplace. Culture has a lot to do with the employees we attract and retain. I believe the best way to hire and train people is to focus on three things: work expertise, skills in working with others and competencies that are consistent with our culture. The third area affects how well people fit in and identify with us and our mission. Being so heavily regulated, we need our employees to support the way we do things. If they don’t, it can lead to problems. We want our employees to do the right things without having to be told to do so. Our best people just seem to get it. I’m curious what you have to say about this.
Answer: You make a strong case for why I believe corporate culture (i.e., the “other bottom line”) is very important. To me, if you really want to stand apart from the competition, differentiate yourselves in the marketplace, become known as an “employer of choice,” etc., corporate culture is the area to focus upon.
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