6 Organizational Culture Examples Worth Following
Organizational culture is a hot topic these days, and for good reason. With big names like Google and Facebook setting examples for what a healthy company culture looks like, many others are following suit and fostering cultures that align with their values and needs. Here are 6 organizational culture examples worth following!
Read on to see what makes these corporations and startups alike great places to work.
1. L.L. Bean
Ranked in Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For, L.L. Bean’s dedication to customers through offerings like lifetime warranties and free shipping is reflected in its internal culture. The 103-year-old retail company with a focus on outdoor apparel has a low turnover rate of just 3%, and employees enjoy perks like discounted gym memberships, employee discounts, paid time off for volunteering and even college tuition reimbursement.
Those aren’t the only benefits of working at L.L. Bean, though. The company sponsors excursions like kayaking and camping for the whole team, and employees can even borrow outdoor gear and take advantage of camping around Rangeley Lake, where HQ is based, with their families.
Management-wise, L.L. Bean takes care of the team by having regular one-on-one meetings with employees to discuss career development and offering regular classes and workshops. Their “Bean’s Best” program praises teammates who go the extra mile with an annual celebration, and teammates acknowledge one another through peer recognition programs.
Why we love it: As L.L. Bean wrote in its culture deck, “Every employee is the most important ever in this company.” That’s a great mindset to have, which is why it ranks first amongst our organizational culture examples.
Also earning a spot in Fortune’s Top 100, Adobe offers perks like discounted gym memberships and tuition reimbursement, plus paid sabbatical and subsidies for commuters. Employees even receive patents for their ideas and are awarded bonuses for those creations at an annual banquet. Product releases are celebrated with events and recognition for the teammates responsible with rewards like bonuses and swag.
What really sets Adobe apart, though, is how it values communication across the company between departments. Regular team events, like a speed networking event, encourage employees to get to know one another. A company-wide community for LGBTQ employees is a place for members of those communities to socialize and have discussions, and several Adobe employees even contributed videos to the popular “It Gets Better” movement aimed toward LGBTQ teens.
Why we love it: Adobe not only encourages creativity and communication, it rewards and provides outlets for them.
Photo courtesy of DogVacay
The “Airbnb for dogs,” DogVacay, is a startup with an office culture any animal lover would covet. Every day is bring-your-dog-to-work day, and the team regularly volunteers at a local animal shelter. Frequent happy hours, karaoke nights and catered lunches are nice added bonuses, plus HQ is just a few minutes from the beaches of Santa Monica. Employees even have access to free rental bikes to take out for a spin when they need to take a break and move around.
As head of communications Rachael King told us: “Our office culture is all about creativity and collaboration, and our open floor plan and fun decor provide a pleasing and comfortable workspace for our teams to work together. DogVacay’s employees come from all different backgrounds, which contributes to our unique and open office culture, but we all have one important thing in common: our love of dogs!”
Check out our exclusive interview with DogVacay’s Office Manager for more details on how they build the DogVacay company culture.
Why we love it: Besides the dogs, it’s a playful environment with passionate people working toward a cause the whole team believes in. Plus, the dogs.
Wrike is another company that puts a great deal of emphasis on hiring for culture, which is likely why it has glowing reviews on Glassdoor and was named one of the best places to work by the San Francisco Business Times. The project management software company does cross-team interviews to ensure a good fit and regularly blogs about culture. The entire team even got to take a trip to Mexico for four days of team-building and learning.
Creativity and feedback are encouraged at Wrike, where the attitude is “if you think it’s a good idea, go for it.” The team also makes a point of celebrating successes. As founder and CEO Andrew Filev tells Enplug:
“We always make sure to take the time to celebrate each other’s wins. In sales, it’s obvious: closing a big deal means bringing in money for the company. But other teams have different measures of success and we are careful to recognize those too,” and that includes personal accomplishments.
Why we love it: Wrike gives employees the autonomy to create a culture they love. Andrew’s advice on doing just that: “Make sure your employees know that being a great workplace is one of your goals as a business leader. They’ll be more than happy to help you create it.” Well said!
Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh once famously said, “Zappos is a customer service company that just happens to sell shoes.” It also just happens to be famous for its wonderful (and sometimes wacky) culture. Amongst these six organizational culture examples, Zappos is probably the best-known. Zappos hires for culture first, treats employees to a three-day culture camp training event, and regularly features employee contributors in a culture series for its blog.
In fact, the company is so focused on culture that it has its own culture book, which has hundreds of unedited testimonials from employees and is updated every year. Their core values are clearly defined and include tenets like delivering customers “wow” through service, embracing and driving change, and creating fun and “a little weirdness” in the office.
Managers are responsible for creating career paths within their departments for all employees, with an emphasis on those who excel. Zappos even offers new hires $2,000 and up to quit if they feel the job isn’t right for them.
Why we love it: Few companies manage to embrace individuality (or “weirdness”) as well as Zappos does, and the company’s unapologetic commitment to a culture-first attitude ensures that never changes.
Quora is all about learning, conversation, and discovery. So it only makes sense, then, that the question-and-answer website’s employees are constantly learning and improving. At Quora, new hires are paired with mentors, and by the end of the first week, engineers and designers are reviewing one another’s code and deploying their creations.
In fact, continuous deployment—where new code is shipped out constantly—is the norm. Constant feedback from peers helps ensure the code keeps improving, and it helps employees learn from one another. Employees get regular one-on-ones with managers starting from day one, and everyone on the team has the chance to work with one another as teams vary by project.
Quora employees are also treated regularly to yoga sessions, free meals and company swag, and movie nights and morale events keep the team happy and engaged. On “one-hour project days,” everyone on the team spends their day doing a set list of tasks—like bug fixes—that can each be accomplished within an hour. The team races to complete each task, listening to music all the time, and celebrating at the end.
Why we love it: Quora’s philosophy of continually learning and improving is right in line with their product, meaning employees always have the chance to take on new and exciting challenges.
These organizational culture examples are just the beginning. Download our FREE eBook, the Company Culture Cookbook, with 33 can’t-fail recipes for a happier and more productive team!
Photo “Visit to the Zappos office”: (cc) Shashi Bellamkonda blog.networksolutions.com
Enplug digital signage software was co-founded by CEO Nanxi Liu and CTO Tina Denuit-Wojcik in 2012 to enable organizations to use customized real-time streaming content to create engaging external and internal communications.