Other than your home, imagine a place you look forward to being five days out of your week. How does it look? What makes you want to be in that place? What feelings overcome you when you’re there? Now, imagine dreading going to that same place while feeling it’s an obligatory task that’s required for your survival. Yeah, sounds pretty bad, right? I’m sure you can identify the place I’m talking about, and yes, it’s your place of employment. The significance of workplace culture cannot be overstated.

What exactly is meant when I say workplace culture?

Among other components, workplace culture can be described as the values a company holds towards its employees, the decision-making, leadership styles, and retention rates of the company. A company’s workplace culture has been shown to be an important aspect in job selection by 46% of job seekers. Furthermore, a staggering 86% of potential job seekers reported having avoided certain jobs and companies due the companies’ bad reputations. On a brighter note, a healthy workplace culture has been shown to positively increase the interests of highly qualified talent, retention and engagement levels, employee performance, and overall satisfaction and happiness. Sounds like the first place I suggested you imagine being, right?

The companies who fall in the category of being desirable workplaces seem to have figured out some vital pieces of establishing a culturally sound work environment. So what happens to the companies who can’t seem to find their footing? Well, many seek the assistance of companies designed to improve upon the diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) principles of their organizations. In fact, roughly 75% of job seekers reported a preference for a diverse work environment. Diverse companies have boasted a mouthwatering 250% more cash flow rate per employee, with diverse management teams increasing companies’ revenue by 19%, compared to non-diverse companies. When more diverse voices are present, a more inclusive culture is imminent for everyone – or is it? According to research conducted by Mckinsey & Company, frontline workers were 27% less likely to believe their companies’ DEI programs were impactful to their work experiences. So, although companies have identified an area of improvement and have ostensibly addressed that area, the effectiveness of the DEI programs is low. How could this be? DEI programs have shown an ability to improve workplace culture, and it often can’t be done without external experts who actually understand the value of the work and how to strategically get it done.

In summary, when DEI practices are valued and championed within a company that is committed to working feverishly at such efforts, it is important that the information obtained from the DEI programs is being applied and the results show up from the top to the bottom of the company. Frontline employees and company brass should be equally active in developing a healthy workplace culture for everyone. As revealed by the statistics, the performance of the company may depend on it.

by Dr. Vincent Anderson