When recruiting new candidates, one of the biggest concerns of companies is whether the candidate be a cultural fit? So do you really understand what corporate culture is? Let’s find out in this article to have a better understanding of corporate culture.
What is corporate culture?
There exists many concepts of corporate culture such as:
- “Corporate culture is the distinctive quality of an organization, which is perceived and distinguishes it from other organizations in the same field” Gold, K.A.
- “Corporate culture is a composite expression of interdependent values and behaviors that are common in an enterprise and tend to be self-propagating and inherited over a long period of time” Kotter, J.P. & Heskett, J.L
- “Corporate culture is the beliefs, attitudes, and values that are common and relatively stable in an organization” Williams, A., Dobson, P. & Walters, M
Corporate culture exists in the company every day practices, such as words, costumes, gestures between superiors and subordinates, between colleagues, etc. Corporate culture is all intangible and tangible cultural values built during the formation and development of the Enterprise.
Types of corporate cultures
- Authority corporate culture: A business with a leadership-focused corporate culture that supports employee growth and is focused on helping them succeed in their field. They tend to have professional coaching and mentoring programs to help employees develop their skills and create opportunities for advancement (e.g.:internal promotion, job rotation program, tuition reimbursement, …).
- Innovative or accurate corporate culture: Innovative or accurate corporate culture focused on development and innovation. Tech startups are an example of this type of corporate culture. It eliminates the strict communication mold in traditional culture, makes the communication of ideas easy, and accepts individuality and ingenuity from all parts of the company. People with strong creativity often work well in this type of business culture.
- Traditional corporate culture: In a traditional business culture, people often have to adhere to strict rules set by the company, including dress codes, company procedures, and organizational hierarchy. Contrary to the other 2 types of corporate culture, which are somewhat simple, traditional corporate culture is often more formal (for example:
The basic elements that form the corporate culture
Corporate culture is composed of many factors depending on the company, but in general, it will have the following similar characteristics:
Tangible elements in corporate culture:
- Space: Is the location, facilities, layout, decoration of the office, working space, …
- Human: Including age and gender, this also reflects the company’s industry-specific characteristics, for example, technology companies will have more male employees…
- Dress code: Depends on the corporate culture. Companies with a traditional corporate culture will often wear uniforms all week. On the contrary, the remaining 2 types of culture may wear staggered days or only on special company occasions.
- Communication: In fact, many companies use normal communication language according to common standards; others have their own internal conventions. And there are many companies that regulate how to communicate/exchange in languages geared towards Customers, etc.
Intangible elements in corporate culture:
- History and traditions that shape the organization: These are stories, memories and important milestones that each member who has been working at the company remembers, is proud of and wishes to build and connect with. It can be the story of overcoming adversity, overcoming difficulties or being honored, achieving achievements of collectives/individuals in the business…
- Core values: These are the common values that businesses aim to build. These values are often built on the personality and interests of the head of the business. There are 3 key foundations for every business to think about when building its core values (besides its vision/mission), which are: Internal HR, Partners/Customers and Social Community.
- Work environment: Is the atmosphere, is the spirit that each employee feels when coming to the office. For example, there are young and dynamic working environments, but there are also environments that promote privacy and require high precision work.
- Policies and regime: This section builds on the size and finances of the company. We have a salary/bonus policy, a welfare/remuneration policy, etc. When the company is in the start-up stage with a number of employees under 10 people, this part is often not focused on building in a systematic manner, most of it will be spontaneous and “seasonal”, not long-lasting…
If the company has abundant budget conditions: Build good welfare policies for employees, think about organizing large-scale events and activities to connect and show gratitude to the families of senior employees. Think about setting up a reserve for emergencies.
The company has a small scale and limited budget: Build movements and activities to help each other progress (learning, sharing experiences, consulting), paying attention to the thoughts, feelings and circumstances of each staff member for support though small but timely.
Building corporate culture is a process that is not the sole job of the Leaders, Managers or individuals. That is the job of the entire company workforce. Therefore, in order for the entire workforce to work together and build a corporate culture, we need to train, communicate, and clearly explain to our team what corporate culture is. Why Build Corporate Culture? The role of each employee in the process of building corporate culture… From there, we can create a common ground of knowledge and understanding to help the entire company work towards a common goal and implement the tasks synchronously.
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