Significance of Culture In A Work Environment
As I journey through life, one thing has become crystal clear to me: The culture with which we surround ourselves has a monumental impact on how people treat us, how we feel about ourselves and how we perform in life and in our work environment.
The definition of culture is “the attitudes and behavior characteristics of a particular social group.” Well, if we dive deep and reflect on our lives, culture begins as children in our homes and changes/evolves as we enter grade school, high school, college, and then the workforce. The culture journey for each of us is unique and by the time we enter the workforce environment, the individuals that we have become—the inner self-talk that forms the foundation of who we are—is simply an accumulation of the cultures that have shaped us.
As is the case for many of you, I’ve had the opportunity to work in numerous cultures throughout my career: Three Fortune 500 companies, a start-up software company, a family-owned marketing agency, and three third-party labor companies. What I’ve learned from all this work experience is simple: The companies that implement the following three things experience the most energized, happy, and successful people:
- Establish a set of CORE VALUES that become the foundation for the culture of the organization.
- Leaders of the organization communicate the significance of living by these core values and demonstrate by their actions that they are living these core values every day.
- All incoming employees and established employees need to “live, breath, and die” these core values in their day-to-day work and be reminded of these core values when the actions they take do not reflect those core values.
Brett Beveridge, the Founder, and CEO of my current company, T-ROC, has established six core values for our organization:
- Be A Passionate Entrepreneur
- Make Honestly and Integrity Win Every Time
- Embrace Change, Embrace Learning
- Amaze Your Customers
- Have Fun and Never Take Ourselves Too Seriously
- Demand Success In All That We Do
The above core values perfectly set the stage for a healthy culture that allows all T-ROCers to: Have fun while delivering great value and services to our customers. It also allows us to bring innovation and collaboration across all our business units by attracting and retaining the best talent. T-ROC believes in empowering our people to succeed and grow with the organization. Our culture facilitates every T-ROCer’s ambitions and goals by allowing us all to be fully engaged and aware of how our roles contribute to the overall success of the organization.
While the words above might not mean much to some, they are EVERYTHING TO ME. They give me free rein to “think outside the box” even if my ideas may seem ridiculous to some, they allow me to leverage the strengths of others where I may be weak, they allow our team to have fun formulating the solution, which can sometimes be difficult/complex and they allow me to work with integrity and ethics… core to my culture/value system as a young girl. Last and most importantly, we get to amaze our customers with a well-thought-out plan that will solve their pain points and drive incremental sales. That is the true output of a solid culture.
Mary Jo Liesch (MJ) is Director of Business Development for T-ROC, a global retail solutions provider. Fun fact about MJ—her husband changed her name from Mary Jo to MJ in college, since he was a fan of both Michael Jackson and Michael Jordan, and he thought a much cooler brand for her, and 40 years later, it’s still the name she goes by! To learn more about how MJ and T-ROC can work with your brand or manufacturer on innovative solutions, you can reach her at [email protected].