The other day I received a text from a good friend:
“I just walked past your old workplace and 1) just realized where it was and 2) it’s all decorated for Halloween, and I like the vibe.”
It put a smile on my face for a few reasons:
I instantly flashed back to the good times at that job—especially our holiday celebrations.
I remembered how good the culture was there.
I appreciated the serendipity of receiving this text amidst my current company’s campaign about workplace culture and the impact that it makes. It made me proud to have worked somewhere my peers deem pretty cool.
Opportunity led to my moving on, but one of the best parts of that job was the culture. It was a workplace where true, genuine friendships were built. It had a very creative, casual environment, so people were comfortable showing their personalities. And while we worked hard, we had a lot of fun along the way. It’s a nice feeling to enjoy what you do and with whom you do it.
We celebrated all of the holidays with themed parties, and the entire building was ALWAYS decorated, inside and out. This is not something that should be taken for granted. I really appreciated the time and effort that went into planning fun, engaging activities that we all enjoyed participating in. Some people would act like they were “too cool” to join in, but they always showed up got REALLY competitive, so they weren’t foolin’ anybody! And it was there that I carved my first pumpkin!
Aside from holiday celebrations, we also went on outings to places like Top Golf and baseball games, and planned fun activities like a field day and our annual Thanksgiving flag football game. These sorts of activities allowed us to get to know one another better outside of the traditionally rigid and stressful context of work. These deeper connections made for stronger working relationships as well.
Back to the text from my friend: The Halloween décor is definitely very fun, but it’s so much more. It’s about culture. Because this company allows itself to have some fun with its culture, IT GETS NOTICED. It also doesn’t have a hard time attracting and retaining talent. And this talent, with its amazing culture, has led to years of landing and retaining amazing clients and projects.
From my own first-hand experience, I can attest, good workplace culture:
- Attracts and retains talent;
- Attracts and retains business;
- Creates better working relationships;
- Improves quality of life;
- Instills a sense of pride in your workplace.
Written by Sara Khalatbari, director of social engagement at SHRM