How Your Interiorscape Business Culture Affects Job Recruitment
“Customers will never love a company until the employees love it first.”Simon Sinek
Your interiorscape company may provide quality plant management, maintain a solid social media presence, and operate smoothly and efficiently. Without a positive, defined business culture, however, the company you’ve worked so hard to build may not grow and last. Specifically when it comes to job recruitment, business culture will affect who applies and which candidates will actually fit not just the position but the company as a whole.
What Is Culture?
Your company’s culture is what makes its unique from every other interiorscape business. Since people are the creators and sustainers of culture, an organization’s culture is living, breathing, and ever-changing. There are, however, six key elements you should consider when thinking about your interiorscape company.
Every company has a product and/or service. Not every company understands the purpose behind that product and/or service. The vision or mission statement of your business is answers the why. Why do you do what you do? What are the beliefs and objectives that motivate you and the company to bring plants into various environments? To share plants with others? To care for nature? Your vision is the foundation of your culture. You have to start with why, and that why informs the other five elements of the company’s culture.
Values serve as the guidelines for the behaviors and actions taken to fulfill the vision. Companies can articulate their values in countless ways: a single phrase, an acronym, a list, and more. Many businesses share common values around employees, clients, professionalism, and so on, but the originality of your interiorscape company’s values is less important than their authenticity. Values are meant to be lived out, not to be written on a plaque in the office and remain merely words.
Ultimately, your vision and values are meaningless if they do not inform and initiate action. As an interiorscaper, your mission may be to bring nature into the workplace. Your values are serving your clients and bringing them the benefits of living plants. The mission and values result in your practices: designing, installing, and caring for plant displays. Hopefully, your vision and values are so ingrained in your company and culture that your employees also experience the benefits as you bring nature into your office space. Whatever your vision and values, you must reinforce them in training, review criteria, promotion policies, and so on. Bake them into the daily operating principles of your interiorscape company.
At NewPro Containers, we intentionally practice what we put on paper. Our values of family and flexibility form the basis of policies like unlimited paid time off for illnesses, extended vacation days, and no strict time limits for lunch. While many companies worry about employees taking advantage of such benefits, we want our employees to work smarter, not harder. That may mean taking a long lunch break to catch up with an old friend, traveling with family out West for a month, or simply staying home to get over the flu. It’s these little practices that make a big difference in our culture.
“Determine what behaviors and beliefs you value as a company, and have everyone live true to them. These behaviors and beliefs should be so essential to your core, that you don’t even think of it as culture.”Brittany Forsyth, VP of Human Relations, Shopify
People are crucial to your culture. Why? Because your vision, values, and practices go nowhere without the people. People who share those core beliefs; people who are passionate about the vision; people who work hard to achieve the mission. Numerous studies show that believing in the vision and values is more important than salary for many job candidates. Furthermore, departments that focus on cultural alignment have a 30% less turnover rate. Employees who are cultural fits do not place as much importance on salary. When people become part of a culture they like and can invest in–and that invests in them–they will stick with that company for a much longer time.
Building community is integral to our culture at NewPro. One of the things we do every year to develop relationships is Biophilia Day. All of our employees get together for an outdoor activity, generally canoeing. This is a great way to connect our team with each other, with nature, and why we do what we do.
Storytelling is integral to human relationships and communication. Stories are how we explain the world and connect effects to a cause and vice versa. Your interiorscape company’s story is a core element to your culture. It communicates to employees and clients the history and future goals for the business and people involved. By defining the identity of the company, your story serves as the grounding force in the organization. And a powerful, well-told story is a great way to share your mission, values, and practices with your clients.
Words and actions are crucial to business culture, but what about the passive influences? At NewPro Containers, we believe the environment–specifically the office space–heavily impacts your interiorscape company’s culture and employee productivity and satisfaction. We believe in biophilia. Biophilia describes the inherent connection humans have with nature. When the built environment and nature meet, people experience a boost in mood, performance, collaboration, and more. NewPro’s mission statement emphasizes our belief in biophilic design.
WE BELIEVE THAT EVERY ENVIRONMENT CAN BE ENRICHED BY NATURE. Plants bring a natural beauty to both indoor and outdoor atmospheres. By creating texture and providing balance to designs, plants can easily transform any space into a warm and inviting environment.
Aside from being aesthetically pleasing, plants provide other benefits. Plants have a calming effect which can help relieve stress. They also have been known to help boost productivity, creativity, and problem solving.
Here at NewPro, our goal is to provide industry professionals all the resources necessary to help keep the world we live in beautiful despite rapid economic development.
NewPro’s story is all about bringing plants and nature into the built environment. We tell that story through words, but we also do it through other subtle but impactful means, like our building and branding. Our space is filled with plants, large windows, and colorful walls. Your office design should reflect the values and character of your interiorscape company. It should communicate your organization’s story as well as any words could.
How Does Culture Affect Recruitment?
Culture is important not just for the people currently part of your interiorscape company, whether employee, client, and so on. Culture impacts how people outside view the business. Your culture may be the first impression you have on a job candidate. Therefore, you’ll want to be on top of the game, making sure you communicate your organization’s culture throughout the recruiting process. Here are steps you can follow to share your culture and attract the right people to your company.
Take action on day one by including your full mission statement in the job description. Maybe include a couple sentences on the organization’s core values and how those values play out in the work environment. Incorporate these values into the job requirements, especially in the soft skills section. Let job candidates know right away how you expect your employees to act and what characteristics you’re looking for. Even consider where you post the job description and how that reflects on the company’s culture.
Communicating culture during an interview means attention to details. What kind of language do you use in emails? How is the office decorated? What aspects of your company (annual reports, artwork, other materials) are available for candidates to peruse before the interview? A great tip is to interview the person at the location where they would work if hired and maybe even give them a tour of the office.
Put your culture into practice during the interview by providing candid information about the work environment. If the company values collaboration, conduct the interview with several staff. If the company values friendliness, give a warm welcome and put the candidate at ease. If the company values family, show the interviewee pictures of your kids and talk about employees bringing their children to work. It’s the simple things that leave a lasting impression. The reality is, the interview is not just about getting to know the candidate; it’s about the candidate getting to know you.
How you follow-up with the candidate speaks to the organization’s culture. If possible, involve the candidate in interiorscape activities, such as inviting them to visit places where you deliver services. This allows you to observe them in the everyday work environment and gives them an opportunity to grasp a better understanding of the position. Always communicate in a way that reflects the culture appropriately. If you request a follow-up interview, perhaps introduce the candidate to other staff, including potential direct reports or peers. At NewPro, our introductions include the animals we have running around the warehouse everyday.
If you extend an offer, and the candidate accepts, follow up with information about tangible aspects of the culture. These might include a dress code, break room rules, employee handbook, and other general policies.
While you want to find someone who is a good fit for your company and the position, you want the candidate to see him or herself as a cultural fit as well.
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