It is no secret that company culture defines the way a business and employees interact with one another, management and with customers. While most small businesses thrive to become bigger and better, it’s important for the livelihood and longevity of your business to avoid having an underdeveloped workplace culture.

Whether your workplace culture is rooted in positive thinking, casual demeanor or a family-like atmosphere, it’s important to define and maintain your identity.

Even the smallest gestures, such as keeping the office clean, providing snacks for your team and adding interesting art to the walls, can make the biggest difference in the operation and perception of your company.

Encouraging shared beliefs throughout the company is vital to the strength of your business’ culture. These beliefs may include establishing a framework for decision making, setting company priorities and even discussing how to resolve conflict within the company. To establish these shared cultural beliefs, write them down and distribute them to your employees.

Creating and upholding a positive work atmosphere with open communication among your employees is another way to help maintain your business’ cultural perspectives. Consider implementing an open-door policy to help preserve communication and reassure employees that they are respected and valued.

Keeping your employees knowledgeable about company decisions will promote unity and keep employees engaged in protecting the welfare of the business. Designate a specific time and place, such as weekly or monthly meetings, so employees have the chance to contribute their ideas and provide feedback for the company.

Giving your employees a purpose by allowing them to contribute their thoughts and help solve problems within your company will help establish culture.

Team-building activities held outside of the office can also help build employee relationships. Consider holiday office parties, mid-summer barbeques or birthday celebrations that are not directly tied to work. Some on the benefits may increase focus and productivity, as well as relationship development.

Remember, your company culture determines the way your partners and employees interact with one another and your business. Maintain a focus that helps everyone involved feel trusted and appreciated, and your employees will stay engaged, productive and enthusiastic as the company continues to grow.

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