When we think of company culture, we often think of rigid hours, strict bosses, and soul-crushing Monday mornings. However, as times have changed and businesses have been able to collect productivity data, modern business leaders have come to an enlightened realization. Having a more employee-focused “People-first” culture within a company dramatically affects employee productivity and employee retention rates in which, after the pandemic, almost one-third of millennials considered finding a new job.
So with more and more people prioritizing personal comfort and life satisfaction over better monetary compensation, it is no surprise that naturally, work culture transitioned to this “people-first” approach.
This shift in the general workforce mentality from career-focused to life satisfaction has left employers no choice but to adapt. The science is in, and it will come as no surprise to anyone that when an employee is contented, they are far more productive and far less likely to quit. A people-first culture means putting your employees, your people, first rather than the business. This might seem counterintuitive, but it actually has proven to net positive results. Focusing on your employees' comfort, flexibility, and mental well-being isn’t to make them love coming to work. It simply allows your employees to focus on themselves more and appreciate their employment. Whereas before, the attraction of a fat paycheck might have been enough in the past, today’s modern worker has differing priorities and would prefer the free time to spend with their friends, families or on their hobbies, as well as the option to work from home. This culture really demonstrates a sense of value and trust to the employee; giving trust through autonomous work to your employees can be a useful tool in improving productivity as this will give a sense of mutual respect between workers and management so that regardless of your status in the workplace hierarchy employees will feel supported and not have their integrity insulted.
Cultivating a company culture is the bedrock of any successful company; building a respectable and inviting culture attracts promising applicants and saves on employee retention expenses. The first thing an aspiring new employee will see is the atmosphere in the workplace, and having a positive image will help mitigate that revolving door of employees, which companies desperately try to avoid. Hence, we recommend taking the people-first approach, if there’s one thing the COVID era has taught us, it’s that working in comfort is what people have been longing for. In fact, when companies tried to force their workforce back into the office, we saw a massive increase in resignations. This is how being a people-first employer will make you a sought-after job prospect.
You might worry that giving your employees that much autonomy might cause laziness or decrease productivity, but it couldn’t be further from the truth. Job satisfaction is proven to be one of the largest contributing factors to increasing productivity. Leading a people-first company can be quite challenging, but the transition toward one starts at the top. Management must be ready to adopt this new culture which means changing the definition of business success; you should not rely solely on financial figures but rather on your employees' well-being and happiness.
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