This is the question I am probably asked the most. The answer I want to give is long. In fact, it’s so long, it became entire book (it’s called Double Double, if you were wondering).
But my short answer is simple. To grow your business, you have to develop a world-‐class culture. A commitment to building an awesome culture is also a commitment to making all aspects of your business better.
Think about it, you need top notch employees to build a successful company. To borrow a cliché from one of my favorite movies; if you build it, they will come. You’ll never recruit the kind of people you want if your company’s culture is stodgy or too rigid. Young, ambitious types feverishly avoid this kind of environment and you’ll end up with average applicants just looking for a paycheck.
But build a culture that nourishes and inspires, and entrepreneurial applicants will flock to you. Who wouldn’t want to work in an environment that encourages everyone to work their best?
A lot of companies shy away from building a truly great culture. They think it’s either too expensive or not important enough. Those companies are what I like to call ‘doomed’. Truly great enterprises look at money spent on benefits and perks as investments in their people and can expect it to be paid back tenfold.
Look at Google, one of the biggest and most successful companies on the planet. Their offices are bright, colorful and packed with nap pods, pinball machines and similar paraphernalia. Now is Google staffed by slackers and goof offs? Of course not. In fact it basically has its pick of the top candidates in any field any time it hires.
Some argue its high compensation and stock options do a lot of recruiting for Google, but I retort that its rich culture has attracted the kind of talent that allows it to offer such rich packages. Forget the chicken or the egg, focus on a nice, comfortable roost.
It isn’t just video games or funky furniture that create your culture. Things like vacation time, how you encourage ideas or even what you stock in the fridge go far in fostering an environment of success. In other words, there is no blueprint for how to create a winning culture. Companies that get this, ‘get it’. Emulate them and you’ll see your business take off.
For more information on this topic, check out: Building a World Class Culture