The workplace is changing. As a 39-year-old myself and being in the ad/marketing industry for more than 17 years, I’ve seen a lot of change within the tech & creative industry, especially within the past 10 years. But these days, the internal trends and the way tech companies look at their internal structure appears to be leaking into all verticals.
In my work experiences, I arrived on time every day, worked as hard as I could, and if I did a good job, every once in a while the boss would come down to my level, hand me an ice-cold beer or pop (we call it soda in Cali) and say something along the lines of “good job today!” Every once in a while he would tell me some stories about how when he was younger he had good work ethic and blah, blah, blah. I just wanted to go home at that point.
Soon, things started to change. Tech companies started hiring young, visionary employees. These employees were different: they wanted to feel as though they mattered; they wanted to know they had a purpose in the company and that their role was making a difference. And I noticed bosses and managers no longer sitting down after a hard day’s work saying, “great job guys,” but starting to position themselves alongside their employees rather than above them.
Within the past six years in the security industry, we’ve noticed the baton being passed between baby-boomers to their sons or daughters who are Gen Y or Millennials. And these new leaders have an entire new mindset about how the company should be run and how the corporate culture is paramount.
Imagine a workplace where every morning your employees wanted to come to work because they mattered. You may be reading this and saying, “I already have a great corporate culture.” But do you really?
We visited a security company where every Monday the entire team — from the executives, sales, technicians and office staff — would sit down, eat breakfast and extract ideas on ways to improve throughout every division within, and the information that was being shared and accepted was truly a sight to see, because they understood the importance of communication, accepting criticism and improving from their learnings.
You may be saying, “I already have a great corporate culture.” But do you really?
The installers/technicians were sharing valuable insight that helped us generate better leads by showing the equipment in all of their marketing. The communication also gave great insight into the sales team trying to close inbound leads over the phone. Later that night we decided to head to a restaurant where we shared some beers with the entire tech team, drilling them with questions including whether they ever considered leaving the company. To our pleasant surprise 10 out of 10 said absolutely not. The fact their superiors were interested in hearing what they had to say or suggest let them know that they indeed were valued.
So if your security company staff feels as if it’s strictly a 9-5 job where they show up, do their job and go home without being engaged or made to feel as if they’re making a difference, what can you do to start to make the workplace a better experience for your staff, which will lead to a better experience for your customers at the end of the day?
The first thing you can do is Google corporate culture for companies such as Jet Blue, Google, Facebook, Zappos or Amazon. Learn what these leaders within the corporate culture game are doing and see if you can implement or learn from what they have already created.
Start by having a meeting and let each employee know that they are important, they matter, and without them you could not reach success. Let them know you want feedback on how they believe the company can improve. Assign a division leader to speak as a representative and share their experiences on what made a customer happy or a nice thing a customer mentioned about the company. The ask sales how that input can help them when trying to close a deal.
Here’s a must watch video if you have millennials working for you discussing how they want to work in a place where they matter: www.sd.marketing/culture.
Happy cows make good milk! And happy employees will create a better all-around company and, most importantly, a better brand experience to gain more leads, reviews, word of mouth leads and brand recognition.