A company's culture shapes how it sees itself. Corporate culture has evolved over the decades. Where water-cooler meetings were the norm, we now have Zoom conferences. Building a corporate culture that encompasses the "new normal" may take time, though. Fred Cary has witnessed how businesses have changed in how they approach corporate culture. His own startup, IdeaPros, shows him how other startups have adapted. With less in-person contact, the idea of corporate culture may need rethinking. The business has changed and is still changing, after all. Are we ready to see how corporate culture can adapt to this new reality?
Corporate Culture Depends on Communal Time
In the past, being with others in a communal area helped develop a business culture. Companies could rely on the shared proximity to impart business values and leaders could build connections beyond the daily tasks and responsibilities with employees in between working hours. Today, that's less of a reality. Without scheduled meeting times, there's no effort to reach out to leaders. Communal spaces are now dangerous. The lurking threat leaves employees primarily interacting online. With such limited interpersonal contact, the company culture starts to suffer. Business culture will need to change how leaders share the business's values with their workers.
Creating a Culture of Freedom
Cary's business prioritizes employee freedom. He considers his employees to be artists, contributing to a collective. While they may be working for his company, they all have their own passions that he encourages. The focus on freedom as a culture has led to increased employee loyalty. It also extends to making business decisions. Employees don't need to consult a manager before they decide something business-related. Instead, they can leverage their expertise to benefit the business. This culture of freedom promotes independence among workers and there's less need to have a communal space when employee freedom is guaranteed.
Independence Breeds Innovation
Cary's business relies on innovation. Independent employees are more innovative than those chained to their desks. Because Cary's employees have this freedom to experiment, they offer their innovativeness to the company and the results help clients reach their own success. By including innovation as part of company culture, Cary fosters exploration. Human beings don't usually get that in a corporate setting. When corporate culture helps employees push the boundaries of what they know their innovation can provide a competitive advantage.
Business Culture Is Crucial
Businesses build their reputations on their cultures, so instituting a culture of freedom is ideal. The remote working paradigm that has engulfed the world can be a boon as it encourages more companies to look at more complimentary work culture. Cary believes that this freedom is essential to a company's success. The freedom this business culture promotes helps a company explore its boundaries and it could mean a new paradigm for those businesses. As more companies tend to do remote work, adapting cultures will be crucial to success. How successful companies will be in adopting Cary's example remains to be seen, though.