At the end of the day, the successful companies have one thing in common, an outstanding business culture that promotes the success of the individuals working there. When this is in place a company can create great products and provide excellent service to its customers. Many might argue that it’s so much more than culture and they are right. However, if you don’t start with the culture, nothing else you do will work. It’s the foundation. You can layer on the best sales people, incent them well, and they will leave if the culture doesn’t provide the environment they are looking for.
You can spend all the time and money you want on training programs. None of it will work if the culture, or foundation, of the company is not solid enough to support growth. How do you know if a company has a great culture? Employees will actually refer their friends to come work there. They don’t hate their jobs and they don’t make anonymous posts on websites for disgruntled employees. These companies are fun, happy places to work that value the strengths everyone has and actually care about not only the well-being of their employees AND their customers. These cultures foster growth in individuals, which in turn spurs revenue growth.
Employees and customers are wired the same way, and most want 4 things at work according to Tom Rath, author of Strengthsfinder 2.0:
When these needs are met, employees are more than happy to meet the needs of the customers. Remember that as humans, we all do things for our own reasons, not the reasons of others, so we must have a sense of meaning and fulfillment that aligns with our values. Since this applies to all employees, it means that sales and customer service people will be at their best when these basics are an integral part of the culture.
Additionally, when customers know that a company has a positive work environment and supportive culture, they will gravitate towards its products and services first.
All things being equal, our humanity urges us to buy from those who are like us. Shared values matter.
In today’s world of anonymous technological hook-ups, outstanding sales executives and top notch customer service are even MORE important than ever. To insure your company is providing these to your customers, step back and take some time to reflect on your company’s culture and values. You may find that shoring up your foundation is the best move you can make to improve your sales and overall success.