The importance of culture to business success

by Allan Sandilands

Somewhere over the Christmas break there is usually a bit of time to sit at your desk with no interruptions and reflect, ask yourself a few deep and meaningful questions and make couple new years resolutions that hopefully, will help take your business to the next level….. 

If you head out on your own into a new business it’s really exciting and the cool thing is, you are your own boss, you make the rules, there’s no one to tell you what to do or when to do it. What’s even better, it’s really easy to get along with everyone at your work when it’s only you. 

What most people don’t realise is, you are already developing your business culture.

It’s not until your team goes from one person to two people that you begin to see the culture you have been creating.  

If you take a bit of time you can develop a particular style of culture. One that will benefit your business and create far more positives than negatives. If you are looking for a place to begin, start by analysing yourself. Your style of leadership will determine how your employees think and act. 

There’s a great book called, “The Five Levels of Leadership” by John Maxwell that explains the leadership journey. 

People begin their employee journey following you because they have to. It’s a dictatorship and your title ensures tasks are completed. There is very little respect at this early stage of the journey so salary plays a big part on whether an employee stays or goes. 

If they stay, chances are they begin to follow you because they want to. A trust begins to form between you and your team. Your employee starts to open up to you with certain aspects of their personal life. 

They move to a new higher level of respect when they see what you have done for the organization and then again what you have done for them personally.

Finally, they follow you because of who you are and what you stand for. 

Developing a culture is all about recognizing that you, the owner of your business are that culture and that culture that you see every day is nothing more than a reflection. 

So, as you sit in your office chair this year, take a little time to look in the mirror and ask yourself, “What is my culture?”