When developing a recruiting brand, creating employee culture is a hot topic, & certainly not a new one.
Whether you're a business trying to improve staff retention or competing to recruit the best exotic "millennial" talent, whether you're working for an agency or in house, HR or business leadership, I think most of us at least understand that having a definable & sellable employee culture is now a must in the recruiting armoury.
But has this trend become something that we think that we must create instantly? Is it possible?
In the rush to create & define the employee culture brand, many organisations are boldly introducing the latest trend schemes.
Are we creating a pressure to put ticks in the boxes by some new-fangled schemes, pictures of smiling employees on the work for us page? An over investment in making perfectly happy & engaged employees sign up to every company backed charitable event, mentor schemes, advocacy programme or extracurricular socially responsible agenda? Is the "fun ministry" even becoming an overworked cliché?
It leads to the question of much can employee culture be changed or created from the top down?
The British Psychological Society article below studied the employees where "doing good" was held in high regard by the employer, it begs the question...
How quickly can a genuinely core, loyal citizenship style culture be created?
And does one size fit all?
Or is that really down to more natural employee evangelist, grown from within the ranks that is driven by a genuinely fair & caring employer who can enrich the lives of its workforce beyond the monthly pay packet?
I think it's important to remember that when it comes to the holy grail of employee culture, Rome certainly wasn't built in a day...
It’s so tempting for organisations to expect more and more from their employees – and so much harder for employees to resist when they are being asked to do socially desirable things like “help out” and “think about the organisation”. But by making such behaviours expected or even mandatory, we can box people into regulated systems that rob these activities of their intrinsic motivation and instead make them into burdens, burdens that can boomerang back on the organisation and even beyond. Demanding we behave like saints risks turning us into sinners.