A round of applause.
It’s a sound you’ll hear every Monday afternoon at Think Up.
In our weekly all-company meeting, Thinkers give one another Value Caps, small tokens to recognize team members for living out our company values. After each shout-out, the whole company applauds. It’s just one of the ways Think Up’s culture reflects our value of “collaborative, supportive, and respectful relationships with each other, clients, and vendors.”
Culture is the only sustainable differentiator for any organization. Strategies, products, and processes can be copied, but culture cannot be replicated.
Free snacks in the break room, napping pods, and out-of-office events are nice. But culture is more than that.
Strategic organizational planning, mission statements, and confident leaders are vital. But culture is also more than that.
We define culture as the way we do things around here. It is the unique blend of language, values, attitudes, beliefs, ways of thinking, leadership styles, symbols, and customs expressed in the behaviors of individuals within an organization.
When a company has a truly strong culture, it’s visible from the inside out. Studies show when employees are bought in to a company’s culture, and they feel valued and happy, they are significantly more invested in the customer experience—typically leading to higher levels of customer satisfaction.
Potential hires are also influenced by strong company cultures. In fact, companies with strong cultures receive 100% more unsolicited employment applications over those organizations with unengaged cultures. And once they’re hired, employees are more likely to stick around. When a company boasts a highly engaged culture, they see lower employee turnover and absenteeism, as well as greater productivity. Finally, businesses with strong cultures tend to lead their market segment and boast higher rates of revenue growth than competitors.
At Think Up, we are proud of our strong, award-winning culture.
It all starts with a solid foundation and a clear vision. When company values are clearly defined and goals and priorities are supported by the attitude and behavior of the team, it allows everyone to work with the same purpose.
That’s where our practice of sharing Value Caps comes in—by using the language of our Core Values to recognize and celebrate one another, we weave those values into our daily lives and ensure we are all united around common goals.
We have 10 Core Values at Think Up:
Giving each other Value Caps is one of the integral ways our values are woven in to Think Up’s culture.
We also have an annual tradition called Think Up Day, where all members of the company come together for a full-day meeting to align on the year ahead and to celebrate the successes of the year past. This time together is extremely necessary to sustaining an engaging culture; all Thinkers have an opportunity to share their thoughts on what’s to come for the company, creating buy-in and investment for the team.
We’re looking forward to continuing to share about the importance of an organization’s culture in a series of articles. Building a strong foundation for culture is vital, but the work doesn’t stop there. To be successful, a company culture needs to be supported with:
- Established methods to motivate behavior.
- People who believe in, own, and live the culture.
In the coming weeks, we’ll be talking about why each of those are important for a company’s culture and how we bring these things to life at Think Up.