As of yesterday, I’ve been working at Embryo for a full year – time flies when you’re having fun! Many use their anniversary to reflect on what they‘ve learnt about marketing, or themselves, so I thought I’d take a slightly different approach and discuss what I’ve learnt about creating a positive working environment. Why? Well, there are two main reasons:
- I think the working environment at Embryo is one of the main reasons why I’m doing well here, and why I love my job so much.
- Embryo’s working environment is so different to anything I’ve experienced before (in a very positive way!)
Creating a positive environment, or a positive work culture, is essential for boosting employee morale, increasing employee engagement and maintaining good rates of employee retention. But, a positive workplace culture doesn’t just provide benefits to the company – it goes far beyond that. Infact, all stakeholders benefit from it.
Aside from the employer, employees benefit of course – work is a big part of our lives, so it’s important that we get the most from it and that we enjoy it. Not only this, but customers and clients that you provide a service to will also benefit from a good working environment, albeit indirectly. But of course, if employees are happier, motivated and you have a more productive space as a result of creating a positive working environment, then they’re going to provide a great level of service.
Evidently, creating healthy work environments should be at the top of every employer’s agenda. But, how exactly do you do it? In this blog, I’ll take you through ten ways to create a positive work environment, based on what I’ve learnt from my year at Embryo…
Hire passionate people that are the right cultural fit
The people that you hire have the power to make or break your working environment and your team. So, from the get-go, it’s important to hire the right people for the job. That doesn’t just mean hiring people based on their skill set though. Above all, they need to be passionate. With passion, they’re more likely to want to succeed (and therefore help your business to succeed), and they’ll have a hunger to learn and develop. Ultimately, when you’re hiring, it’s important to assess whether the individual would be the right cultural fit – this is just as important as the skills that they can bring to the table.
Here at Embryo, I think this is something that we do incredibly well. If someone is passionate and we think they’d fit right in, we’ll take them on and give them all of the tools and the training that they need to develop their skills and excel in their role.
Have outstanding leaders to drive you forward
Most of the time, it’s the leaders of a business that can influence the working environment and the company culture the most. After all, they’re expected to lead by example, and often set the precedent for those that work for them. Having great leaders to drive you forward is essential, and when I say drive you forward, I mean you personally and the business as a whole. Good leaders – whether they’re leading a full company or a department – are keen to help others develop, are innovative and passionate about staying ahead of the game, and ultimately, they’ll understand the importance of a positive work experience and a positive company culture.
Have a commitment to excellence and live by your values
Every great company will have a set of core values that define what they stand for and what they’re all about (as an example, here at Embryo we’re together, curious, innovative, and focused). Guidance on how to form these values could be a lengthy blog post in itself (and luckily, we’ve got just the blog to help!), but it’s important that you do your research and spend some time crafting your values. Not only does this speak to your potential customers and clients and tell them what they can expect, but it gives your team something to work by as well; these values should underpin all that you do, to maximise success. Be committed to sticking by these values and that will certainly work wonders for your work environment.
Value and reward hard work
If you’re a leader, it’s so important that you recognise and reward hard work. That doesn’t necessarily mean by rewarding your employees with something materialistic – small gestures and praise can go a long way. If employees are working hard it’s likely down to their own personal attitude and the desire to provide the people they serve with a great experience. However, their actions and attitude can have a real impact on your business, and their approach may even rub off on the people around them. So, it’s important to recognise these employees and make sure they know that their hard work is appreciated – whether that’s the results that they are getting, or the effort that they’re putting in by going above and beyond for clients or colleagues in other ways.
Make it easy to communicate and collaborate, despite hybrid working
Many companies have now embraced hybrid working models to offer a greater level of flexibility to employees. Whilst this can provide a range of benefits, there are some obstacles too – namely communication and collaboration. For many businesses, these two skills are essential, and so it’s important that you give your employees the ability to demonstrate these skills. In other words, it’s important that you invest in methods of communication that allow employees to collaborate and discuss important matters with each other, with ease.
Similarly, when working from home, it’s easy to feel cut off from any work environment. Allowing employees to communicate with each other easily can mitigate those feelings, and can allow you to build a supportive work environment, even for remote employees.
Provide growth opportunities and chances for further learning and training
If you follow the first step and hire the right people, they’ll be keen to keep on learning and growing. As such, it’s important that you provide opportunities for further learning and training, so that your team can continue to develop their skills. Obviously, this will benefit them personally and their careers, but it will also benefit your business too, as your employees will be able to bring new skills to the table to help the company move forward.
With that in mind, be sure to listen to your team to understand what they want to work on, what they want to have further training on, and what they think their gaps in their knowledge are. With this information, you can provide learning and training opportunities tailored to their needs.
Put progression plans in place to aid professional development
On a similar note to the point above, the right employees will want to keep moving forward and progressing within the company. Providing opportunities for growth is a key ingredient for a positive working environment and culture, and it can help to reduce employee turnover too as they won’t need to go elsewhere to seek the progression that they want. It’s important to make time for the likes of development sessions and 1-1s, where you can really understand the career objectives of your employees and how they want to progress within the company. From there, you can put a tailored plan in place with action points for both sides, to help them achieve it.
Set goals that can bring people together
Whether it’s long-term goals or shorter-term goals for quick wins, setting goals that require collaboration and teamwork is a great way to create strong employee relationships, which can contribute towards a positive working environment. Here at Embryo, we find that setting monthly departmental goals works well. Whilst people will also have their own personal goals, having something to aim for as a team can really bring you closer to people within the working environment.
Encourage evolution and change (for the better)
In any sector – especially marketing – you really can’t afford to stand still. To stay ahead of your competitors, you have to keep evolving and changing to meet the demands of customers and clients, and the ever-changing digital landscape. At Embryo, we know that we have to keep an open mind and we need a willingness to continue learning, regardless of our years of experience or what we think we know. Marketing is all about learning and unlearning as things evolve and change over time, so your business needs to do exactly the same thing to stay successful and, in turn, create a great working environment for employees.
Host regular company events
Whether it’s quarterly socials after working hours or company AGMs that provide useful information about the future direction of the company and the year ahead, hosting company events is a great way to bring people together and create a fantastic working culture. It reminds people of what they’re a part of, and if you’ve worked to build a positive culture and environment then it’s a fantastic reminder and a great experience.
If you’re looking for a new role in marketing where you’ll be surrounded and supported by a talented team, whilst also enjoying a fantastic work environment and company culture, then take a look at our current positions and apply today.
Alternatively, if you’re looking to elevate your online presence with carefully crafted marketing campaigns – thanks to an experienced and knowledgeable tea – then we’d love to hear from you. We work with businesses all over the UK, so whether you’re from our city of Manchester, nearby areas such as Liverpool, or further afield in other locations – like London – we’d love to discuss how we can help your business grow.