Complicated Culture, also known as, Corporate Culture, is defined as the framework that helps shape the beliefs and behaviors of a company, and that helps determine how employees and management will interact with the consumer who buys the company’s product. Corporate Culture is often not overtly laid out by the administration but it is more something that develops organically through what a company chooses to emphasize. The corporate culture of a company develops as more employee-consumer interactions happen over time. It’s formulated by the way consumers are treated and the way employees act.
This May Not Be as Important Early On:
While it’s always important to respect your potential consumer, for many employers, it is less important to emphasize corporate culture rather than the product that is being developed in the initial days of a business. In the earliest stages a startup will not yet even have any consumers to speak of so corporate culture is the not the most important thing to emphasize. Coming up with a solid product and/or quality service is the most important thing a company must come up with from the start.
Create a Product/Service that Consumers Desire:
If you don’t create a quality product or service that consumers want or that there is a void for in the market it will be hard to have a company in the future no matter what your envisioned culture. Once the product or service is developed and fine-tuned then the corporate culture can become more important. Worrying about ethics and the way to do things before a product is developed is rather foolish considering you have nothing to even offer the consumer yet in the first place. Developing the product or service is the best first priority a company can have.
Implementing Corporate Culture:
Once the product is developed to the point that you can present it to potential customers then the corporate culture begins to come into play. There are many corporate culture options but the most successful should be based off of several key principals including: a) honesty (about the product, the price, and what the customer can expect, b) respect (for the customer, their money, time, interest, etc.), and c) being friendly and customer-centered (the customer experience is vitally important to the company succeeding and people recommending the company/brand/service in the future which promotes growth for the company).
When you do develop a corporate culture, every customer should feel respected and valued. Accept constructive criticism and feedback as it is intended to make your company better. When getting results from customer satisfaction surveys take criticisms as an opportunity to grow, and do not let it discourage you. It’s a chance to make your product or service better in the future. Loyal customers will stick by the company and if you want to offer them the best product or service improving it is your best bet.
Offer Customer Appreciation:
Part of a great corporate culture is showing you appreciate your customers. Nothing makes a customer feel better than being told they are appreciated and that their business is valued. You can show this in many ways. A verbal “thank you” is appreciated and will not go unnoticed. Simply saying, “Thank you for shopping with us” can go a long way in making customers feel appreciated and like their business is valuable to your company.
Other ideas include loyalty programs or rewards for repeat business. For example, many gas stations run a buy 9 coffees get 1 free card. On select weekends or for select periods of time, stores may run specials where you spend $50 and get $10 in “store bucks” money to spend at their store at a later time. Small businesses may offer a percentage off your order every so many orders up to a certain amount. It’s a great idea to provide customers incentive where it matters the most: in the pocketbook!
Creating a startup is a lot of work, but your first concern should be a product or service that you can offer others. Once the product is on the market then it’s appropriate to focus on the corporate culture you want to adopt. Foregoing corporate culture till you get your business up and running, however, gives you more time to focus on the product or service and its development. Remember, in the end, if you have no product to offer it’s pretty pointless to have a corporate culture to sell it with. So, develop that product or service first, and put everything you have into making it the best it can be!