Crafting a Killer Company Culture Employees Will Love

Set your workplace vibe

Imagine walking into an office, feeling the buzz of energy, seeing people enthusiastically collaborating, and thinking, “Yes, this is the place I want to be!” 

That’s the power of a vibrant company culture. It’s not just about bean bag chairs, pool tables, and free snacks (though, let’s be honest, those are pretty great), it’s about creating a space where employees feel valued, inspired, and ready to rock their roles!

Building a strong company culture can be a challenge, but it’s one of the most important tools you have at your disposal to attract and retain high-quality employees. It can also drive business growth when it resonates with your brand, influencing how customers, investors, and others perceive your firm.  

No doubt, this isn’t your first time hearing the phrase. Firms around the world both large and small often like to emphasize their cultures. But now that you’re in charge of your own business, building and maintaining a strong culture might be harder than it seems. Let’s take a closer look at how you can build and implement company culture in your business. 

how to motivate employees

What is company culture?

At its most basic level, company culture defines how work gets done and how people both inside and outside the organization are treated. Think of it as the collective character of your organization, encompassing its values, beliefs, behaviors, and attitudes. A strong culture is both intangible and yet palpable, influencing how employees interact, make decisions, and perceive their roles. It’s shaped by a company’s mission, vision, and leadership, and is reflected in everything from office decor to communication style. A strong company culture will align employees towards common goals, fosters a sense of belonging, and ultimately drives performance and success.

How to define your company culture

The first step in creating a thriving company culture is to identify your organization’s values. What are the core beliefs that guide your company’s actions? What are the behaviors and mindsets that you want to encourage among your team members? These values and philosophies will serve as the guiding principles for your company culture.

Once you’ve identified your cultural values, it’s important to align them with your company’s mission and vision. Your mission is what your company aims to achieve, and your vision is the ideal future you’re working towards. Your company culture should support these goals, creating an environment where everyone is working towards the same objectives.

Next, look outside your company for inspiration. Research the cultures of companies you admire and aspire to. What elements of their culture resonate with you? How have they successfully built and maintained their culture? Use these insights to inform your own culture-building efforts.

If your business is relatively new, it is likely a good idea to involve organizational leaders and employees in defining your company culture. Employees will live and breathe the culture every day, and their insights and experiences can provide valuable perspectives on what’s working and what’s not. Additionally, including employees in shaping the culture will likely give them a sense of ownership and commitment to it. This can lead to increased engagement, productivity, and retention. Lastly, co-creating culture with your employees will likely result in a more authentic and resonant culture, reflecting the diversity and richness of the people who make up the company.

Finally, once you’ve done sufficient brainstorming and discussion, it’s a good idea to formalize your culture into a document that clearly articulates your cultural values, how they align with your mission and vision, and how they should be embodied in day-to-day operations. It serves as a reference point for all employees, helping to ensure that your company culture is understood, embraced, and lived by everyone in the organization. Be sure to incorporate this into your new employee onboarding program, so that new workers can properly understand and adapt to their new workplace. 

Turn your values into actionable steps

Once you’ve established what your culture values and what your company culture should look like, it’s time to put it into action. 

One of the first steps to take is to look for new hires who can make cultural contributions in addition to having the requisite skills. When evaluating candidates for roles, look beyond their resumes and consider how they might align with your company’s values and enrich your organizational culture. Be sure to also include interview questions that help you gauge a candidate’s fit for your culture. This approach will help ensure that your team is not only talented but also culturally cohesive.

As mentioned above, creating a robust onboarding process focused on culture is another key step. New hires should be introduced to your company’s values, mission, and culture from day one. This can be achieved through workshops, mentorship programs, and other onboarding activities that emphasize your company’s cultural norms and expectations. You can also use the Homebase app to keep your team in sync

Additionally, it’s a good idea to develop practices and traditions where you and your employees can actively demonstrate your core values. These could be regular team-building activities, recognition programs, or even simple daily rituals that reflect your company’s values. Look into activities such as off-site retreats, community service days, company picnics, or even in-house seminars, brown bag lunches, or other activities that reinforce your culture. 

Lastly, it’s crucial for leaders to lead by example. It’s imperative to embody the company’s values in your own actions and decisions, demonstrating your own internalization of your firm’s values. This will likely inspire employees to do the same, reinforcing your company’s culture and enabling it to flourish. 

How to cultivate a vibrant workplace for all

As a business owner, you want your employees to be as enthusiastic about coming to work as you are. And that starts with cultivating a vibrant workplace for all.

The first step, which we touched on above, is incorporating your company’s values into its policies and operations. Your values should just be words on a wall; they need to be clearly demonstrated in the day-to-day running of your business. Everything from how meetings are conducted to how decisions are made should reflect your company culture. When issues arise, as they inevitably do, your cultural principles should serve as a compass, helping you navigate challenges in a way that’s consistent with your company’s identity.

To keep your culture vibrant and relevant, it’s a good idea to regularly solicit feedback from employees, either as a survey or simply through conversation. Take time to understand their experiences, be open to their suggestions, and make any necessary adjustments to your culture as needed. Remember, a company’s culture isn’t static, but it evolves as the company grows and changes.

Finally, be sure to take the time to formally recognize cultural ambassadors and their contributions to your company. These individuals embody your company’s values and make daily contributions to its success. By acknowledging and celebrating these cultural ambassadors, you not only reinforce your company’s values but also inspire others to live them out.

food workers

Build your culture to breed success

A well-defined and vibrant company culture is the backbone of any successful organization, and it’s imperative for your business if you want to succeed in the long term. A strong company culture sets the tone for how the company operates, influences how employees interact with each other and with customers, and guides decision-making processes. From the moment a business is born, culture plays a pivotal role in shaping its identity and driving growth.

What’s more, culture impacts every aspect of a business. It’s not just about creating a pleasant work environment or fostering team spirit. A strong culture influences everything from recruitment and retention to productivity and performance, from customer relations to brand reputation. The Homebase app can also help out here, offering perks and features that prioritize employee satisfaction and success.

Ultimately, culture is your company’s DNA and investing in it is a necessity for achieving long-term success.


What are examples of positive cultural values?

Company cultural values can vary from business to business, but a few common ones include integrity, transparency, innovation, respect, and accountability.

What traditions help reinforce company culture?

Team building exercises, employee recognition programs, regular all-staff meetings, company lunches, holiday celebrations, and learning opportunities are some more common ways organizations build and reinforce their culture. Take some time to ask your employees and team what kind of traditions they’d prefer.

How can founders create cultural buy-in?

Creating cultural buy-in is a critical part of building your company’s culture. Founders will dramatically improve adoption rates first and foremost when they themselves transparently live their culture. Other ways to create buy-in include recognizing employees for their contributions, having open and transparent communications, and hiring people who are a cultural fit. 

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