Setting a goal, staying focused on it, and eventually achieving it isn’t enough on its own to create a long-lasting business. How you get to the end matters. It matters deeply. It even counts when it comes to your bottom line.
The Ingredients of Culture
Vision – the guiding reason behind why your business exists in the first place. Vision is fundamental to your long-term success. It is your foundation.
Values – the guidelines that embody and articulate your vision create a groundwork for your practices.
Practices – the tangible manifestation of your values. Practices are how you bring your values into the real world.
In other words, the culture you create matters. It matters for your employees and customers. Even if your customers don’t come into contact directly with your operational culture, it shows up.
Why Culture Matters
A brand like Apple comes to mind. You can buy an iPhone and never step foot in an Apple store to experience the direct culture. But you benefit from their engineering values of simplicity and excellence.
Nordstrom is another example. Even if you never have an employee drive halfway across town to bring you back your purse, the customer service experience feels noticeably different than shopping at Walmart. It doesn’t just feel different either, it is different. It all adds up. If you put enough intangibles together and write them into the fabric of a business, it has a way of bursting into the real world in very tangible ways.
It isn’t just about having a great culture to have one. 73% of companies with above-average customer experience perform better financially than their competitors. Loyal customers are five times more likely to purchase again and four times more likely to refer a friend to the company. Companies with engaged employees outperform the competition by 147%. The top 10 most empathetic companies increased their financial value more than twice the bottom 10 companies. (Forbes)
How you get to your goals is fundamental to your business success. You probably won’t reach your goals long-term without a thought out culture to build them on.
The Simple Formula for Creating Culture
Vision/Mission + Values + Practices = Culture