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How to Build a Culture Charter for SME’s

How to Build a Culture Charter for SME’s

How to Build a Culture Charter for SME’s

Small business is exciting! You have an idea, you build a plan, gather a team and then you put yourself into overdrive to get your first clients. Exciting at first and the passion drives you, however you drive yourself into a tunnel and see nothing else, until one day you might notice you are missing things….holidays, relationships, appointments, to name a few. There is a right way to do business and it comes through having a great culture charter for your own business. When you show leadership in your start up, others will follow!

“You Must Be Kind to Yourself First And Foremost As You Then Start to Be Kinder To Others”- Sonia McDonald

The Better the Culture, the better people Perform

The editorial team at Entrepreneur Handbook emphasises “Developing a great company culture is the key to small business success.” Put simply, the better the culture at your company, the better people perform. Poor work environments are shown to produce poor results, this is especially true in the era we’re in. So how do you go about developing and maintaining a small business HR department that creates/maintains a unique company culture that will attract, nurture and retain the brilliant people you need to build your business? Here are three ways to do it:

  • Establish your company culture
  • Make sure everyone is on the same page
  • Make sure your recruitment process is in line with your culture
  • Make culture an ongoing priority
  • Start creating a great company culture

Remember creating a great company culture is not just about big changes, it’s also just as much about the small things from your business ethics and dealing with customers to how team members interact: culture trickles into every crevice of your business.

7 Steps for Small Business Success

A Linkedin article by Ed Nathanson outlines Building Company Culture: 7 Steps for Every Small Business.”  Right now, candidates have more options for employment than at any point in recent history. In other words, it’s a candidate’s world and we’re just living in it. And for small businesses, that means that if you want to fill your open roles, you need to set yourself apart – and you need to have a great company culture to do that. Now, we’ve heard a lot of praise for the company cultures of tech giants like Google and Netflix or retail monoliths like Zappos. But, let’s get real: small businesses can’t do anything with these examples. You don’t have huge HR teams with expansive budgets, built-in (and beloved) brand recognition, or all the perks like doggy day-care centres, onsite barber shops, or any other over the top benefits those companies are offering lately. 

Without all the bells and whistles, most small businesses have had to be, for lack of a better term, more “scrappy” in how they build winning company cultures. In my opinion, what they are doing are the real examples most of the business world can learn from. Not to say that the large companies aren’t doing amazing things, but in the name of “stuff my company can actually do” vs. “what I would love to do If I had a huge budget” it’s time we started offering up some examples of small businesses that are doing things right — and that are actually relevant to the majority of the folks reading this stuff. 

So, I recently spoke with two different small companies from two very different industries about how they go about building, defining, and measuring a successful company culture. Based on our conversation, here are some steps that every small business can take to build a great company culture:

  • Step 1: Define what you want your company culture and values to look like
  • Step 2: Look at what your culture is like now – and if you need to make changes
  • Step 3: Identify (or hire) someone who will be your people person
  • Step 4: Invest time in building your talent brand
  • Step 5: Optimize your hiring process to ensure you are bringing in the right people
  • Step 6: Find ways to constantly reinforce your core values
  • Step 7: Measure if your culture is effectively attracting and engaging talent

The building of an effective culture is ultimately unique to each organization, but the “nuts and bolts” of an effective culture for small businesses are what made these conversations with Sarah and Michael so fascinating (and important) to me. Any company, regardless of industry or size, can learn from their advice. 

Work-Life Balance is Elusive! 

My blogBeing a Great Leader and Having a Life,” is a reflection on how work can consume us and this is especially true when we run a small businesses. Despite all the challenges that have, we will come to realise what is truly important? It’s illustrated constantly in media and everyday life: the worker who gets ahead and rises to the top is the one who eats, breathes and lives their work. All are what managers would call the ‘ideal worker’ It’s a case of ‘do as I say, not as I do’, according to plenty of leaders who admit they aren’t great role models and that their job is 24/7. So why is a “work-life balance“ so elusive, or even completely unattainable if you wish to be successful? The answer is that it doesn’t have to be this way! It was an important lesson I learned in the past few years and even more so today. I had to put the oxygen mask on myself first, be kind to myself and start balancing my priorities.

Jessica DeGroot, the owner of the ThirdPath Institute, is helping people make time for family, work, and life in general. Strategies that are incredibly effective include:

  • Making a list of ‘what can wait’, one week before you travel
  • Two weeks before you go, delegate and review teamwork that will be essential while you’re away
  • Not scheduling calls or meetings the day before or the day after your holiday

She also recommends putting strategies in place to allow you to have quiet time at work DeGroot says, “When you get leaders to behave differently, it sends a signal to the rest of the organisation that they can behave differently, too.” When leaders pioneer this new way of thinking, ThirdPath discovered that there were three relationships that needed skills developed in order to bring about the necessary change: 

  • Leaders need to learn how to make plans with their families to put them and their home first 
  • There needs to be change how they work with their teams at work 
  • The idea work-life balance being a mere pipe-dream needs to change

It’s far more important to be effective and use your time wisely than to work constantly. Unlike what most people think, you CAN be a great leader and still have a fulfilling personal life as well with habits that make you successful.

“Remember to put the oxygen mask on yourself first and stay kind”

MAKE A START by improving YOUR Leadership Skills 

Now that you understand how important it is for leadership in your SME, I am here to support you for your next level of success through three opportunities:

1.    Join my Course to your Inner Courage – and it’s only $47! I am beyond excited and privileged to have you working with me on my First Comes Courage Read-Along Course. Book your spot, grab the book and make this year a year of Courage! Join alone or as a team! Starts 22nd February 2021 and you enrol and start anytime…

2.    Coaching helps leaders go from good to exceptional. Coaching conversations:

  • build self-awareness
  • uncover hidden strengths and limiting beliefs
  • offer new perspectives
  • evoke insight
  • support goal-setting, accountability and achievement
  • improve communication, and
  • enhance performance

Book a FREE discovery session 

3. Nominate today for our 2021 OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP AWARDS

4.    LeadershipHQ’s Online Self-Paced Program ONLY $997 (RRP $1495)

Only $997 with a 14 Day Money Back Guarantee! Join 1000’s of people across the Globe who have transformed their confidence and leadership.

And, remember, Leadership starts from within, so grab my latest book FIRST COMES COURAGE!

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Get in touch today to learn more about building leadership skills and set yourself up for success!

Stay Kind. Stay Courageous.

Sonia x

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