In today's world, there are many different hiring practices. There are full-time workers, part-time workers, contract workers who freelance, contract-to-hire and so on. With contract hiring websites such as Jobble and Upwork, some positions can easily be filled...
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How Company Culture Shapes Employee Motivation
You’ve probably read countless articles and seen numerous presentations highlighting the importance of corporate culture. Unfortunately, most of the news focuses on measuring employee satisfaction.
What’s wrong with employee satisfaction?
Satisfied employees are happy where they are, but they aren’t necessarily engaged and motivated to do more to help the organization excel. Motivated and engaged employees want to push to be better and make the business a better, more fulfilling place to work.
As you consider industry employment trends and your business environment, think about it in terms of engagement. Fostering an engaging company culture is a business strategy that can shape employee motivation and improve your business performance in critical areas.
Culture Shapes Motivation and Engagement
Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs gives us insight into what humans require and desire to live a fulfilling life. Work and career play a prominent role in helping people meet each of those basic needs. While the purpose of a business isn’t to help each team member self-actualize, an employer with a company culture that doesn’t help facilitate advancement toward that goal is at risk of losing star performers.
Consider this little bit of math to put the company culture concept in perspective.
There are 8,760 hours in one year. The average U.S. citizen gets 6.8 hours of sleep per night, taking up 28% of those annual hours. That means people who work at least 40 hours per week spend a minimum of 31% of their annual waking hours at work. (This figure excludes the typical two week’s vacation, five paid holidays, and five sick days.)
Who wants to spend over one-third of their waking hours in a ho-hum (or toxic) work environment?
How Well Does Your Culture Meet Needs?
Survival Needs. As long as you’re paying people to work, you’ve answered at least some or all of their survival needs. However, people stuck in survival mode will constantly be searching for something better. “Survival needs” can have different meanings for different types of workers. While high wages don’t necessarily lead to higher retention, fair wages will make a big difference.
Security Needs. People who don’t feel secure will not likely stay with your business for long. To improve people’s sense of security, you need:
- Strong, ethical leadership
- A workplace that doesn’t tolerate hostility, harassment, or bullying
- Transparency about company performance
Belonging Needs. Humans are social creatures, for the most part, and we like to feel as though we belong. Your company culture can address the need to belong by:
- Hiring for cultural fit
- Paying attention to onboarding and training needs
- Encouraging open lines of communication between coworkers, employees, and management
- Embracing diversity initiatives
Importance Needs. People like to feel important and that they have a role to play in their groups. Does your culture highlight and recognize team members to make them feel important? People who perceive a sense of importance also feel engaged in a company’s vision and mission. Include the following types of programs to help build up staffers and their understanding of their importance to the company.
- Recognition programs — formal and informal
- Awards for achievement
- An employee newsletter or intranet where employee success stories are shared
Self-Actualization Needs. Most people strive to be the best version of themselves, and career accomplishments can play into self-actualization. How well doe