Culture matters regarding attractiveness of an organization to qualified potential recruits and also for existing employees.
If a culture is too relaxed, then ambitious people may find the workplace insufficient and detrimental for their careers.
If the workplace is too formal, company may have trouble attracting young and creative people.
If it is unfriendly to minorities and women, then people will not consider staying at your company and will continue their careers somewhere else.
Moreover, nobody would like to stay in a company if its culture is dominated by conflicts, turf wars, nonfunctional managers or overabundant hierarchical privilege.
Ask your employees two questions as a start to improve your culture.
Is there a gap between the desired workplace and the current atmosphere? If yes, what are they?
What can we do to improve our work culture and to close the gap?
Some of many ways to close the gap between the current workplace culture and the one needed to attract and retain valuable people are listed below in scenarios:
Scenario 1: In the case that your employees find your culture too formal as they consist of young, high-energy people and look for a more informal, fun, passionate culture; you can try relaxing the dress code, allowing employees to have flexible schedules especially during stressful times, creating positive atmosphere with games, outdoor activities and occasional parties.
Scenario 2: The employees with young families are not happy because of the separation of their two lives at work and at home. You may start having family picnics with your employees and their families, let employees bring their kids to work or let them go home early on special occasions, facilitate work from home or provide them flexible working time and so forth.
Scenario 3: There are many people whose jobs require intense researching and who need quietness to do concentrated thinking and writing. Try allowing these employees to work from home especially when they are working on intense projects, keeping the frequency and length of meetings at minimum and investing in white-noise generator if these people are working in cubicles instead of offices. But don’t make them become too isolated from other people, otherwise team spirit will disappear.
No doubt, these fine-adjustments do not have to be expensive or difficult. You can create the desired culture with a little bit of enthusiasm and creativity and by listening to your employees and being open to new ideas.
Remember that managers are being observed by the employees and their actions must encourage them to create such a culture. If a manager decides to apply casual dressing and still wears suits every day, employees who are aiming the management level in their careers will not be willing to wear casual.