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Going Corporate Doesn’t Mean Losing Your Culture

By Laura Goad

A company’s culture is important no matter how big or small your organization is.  As your company grows and gains more corporate titles and processes, your culture becomes even more important.  Corporate culture refers to your company’s beliefs and behaviors that determine how your employees and management interact with each other and handle your customers.  A company’s culture will be reflected in your dress code, business hours, office setup, employee benefits, turnover, hiring decisions, treatment of customers and customer loyalty. As you grow you want to regularly evaluate where your culture currently stands, see what is missing and establish a plan to make corrections.

Whether you establish it or not, your company has its own culture. When corporate culture is ignored, it might change in a way that’s good, but then again, it might turn into a culture that drives away your best people. Know the goals you want your organization to achieve and learn what changes are necessary to achieve them. Change is hard but can be done.

Needing a corporate cultural change doesn’t mean throwing everything out and starting from scratch. There may be ways the current culture works well and can help achieve organizational goals. In these cases, recognizing those cultural key areas can reduce everyone’s change-related anxiety. But company leadership must support the overall desired culture through rewards systems, performance management, and training for change to really gain traction.