The COVID-19 pandemic has upended the standard idea of company culture, including interaction between leaders, employees, and coworker connection. It is important to adapt quickly and retain flexibility during the pandemic, which has helped in uncovering the futility of a top-down approach to leadership. Also, the importance of brand culture has increased as a result of high-profile culture crises, the drive for diversity, equity, and inclusion, as well as the constant battle for talent. Company culture is now a vital strategic priority that can no longer be delegated or compartmentalized anymore.
Company Culture: The Roles of Various Departments
1) Board of Directors, CEO, and Senior Management Team
The board of directors should guide the definition and the creation of the desired company culture. They should ensure that it aligns not just with the business goals, but it meets the requirements of all stakeholders. The CEO alongside the senior management team should define the required culture, then cultivate it via leadership actions like setting objectives, plans, and key results which prioritize culture-building. The organization and the operational processes should be designed to support and promote the company’s core values.
2) Human Resources Department
The human resources department should craft employee experiences which interpret and strengthen the desired company culture. They should implement strategies that aid the organization in fulfilling their culture responsibilities, like providing training programs to develop leader capacity and employee engagement. They can develop culture guidebooks and implement performance management systems or rewards and recognition programs to nurture the desired culture.
3) Compliance, Risk, and Ethics Department
The compliance, risk and ethics department should give vital input to the CEO or the senior management team to shape the definition of the company culture, particularly from the ethics and risk perspective. They should ensure that the desired culture implementation across the organization actually aligns with the brand’s risk management strategies via tools like ethics decision trees, or processes like a whistleblower program, or systems like compliance monitoring which aligns with the culture.
4) Middle Managers
The middle managers are expected to deliver staff experiences which interpret and strengthen the company culture. They should implement different culture-building strategies and cultivate staff engagement with the created culture and ensure that they carry out any culture-building duties of employees.
Employees should give their input to either the CEO or senior management team, whichever is required, on the actual definition of the company culture, including the culture-building programs and strategies. They should give insights on how the culture is different from or aligns with customer perspectives, as well as staff needs and expectations. The employees should also offer feedback on already existing culture-building programs and give ideas for new ones. They should create, follow and enforce activities that interpret the culture, while aligning their own attitudes with it.
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