A great internal culture goes a long way as far as raising employee engagement and motivating employees at the workplace goes. We examine seven innovative companies, and see what their company cultures look like.
Every respectable company should understand the importance of having a great internal culture; having a company vision, values, beliefs and habits. It is these things that become the subconscious of the organisation as a whole, quietly guiding the actions of its employees and can drive it to ruin or success.
Not every company has the anticipation to come up with a long-term plan for their growth and culture. Below are seven companies that have excelled in developing great internal company cultures.
Founded by Mark Zuckerberg in 2003 as Face Mash, in the dorms of Harvard University, this company has always had a maverick feel about it. After changing the name and enjoying success among several American colleges, CEO Zuckerberg dropped out of college in 2004 to focus on building Facebook.
Upon relocating and renting a small space in Palo Alto, California, the Facebook brand started to grow, as did the internal culture – being known as an office that was fun to work at.
After securing funding from billionaire tech investor Peter Thiel and completing a strategic hire of Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook became a little more serious but still retains a great internal culture.
However, despite its rapid growth the company has continued to keep its playful approach to innovation, giving its employees plenty of room to experiment with the product.
Read more in our article, An Insight into the Corporate Culture at Facebook.
LEGO’s corporate culture heavily encourages creativity, play and innovation and is a fantastic example of great internal culture. The LEGO Group gladly welcomes children to their workplace for guided LEGO site tours and co-creation events. Their open-plan design and development studio is always buzzing with activity.
Team boundaries are defined by bold banners and enormous brick sculptures and designers are allowed to express their individuality by displaying all sorts of objects and images in their workspaces.
It is this kind of dedication to understanding the power of play that has enabled LEGO to continue find new ways of connecting with both children and adults through their basic product.
Read more in our article, A Great Company Culture Example: LEGO.
Airbnb was founded in 2008 by roommates, Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia.
Brian believes that the stronger the culture, the less corporate process a company needs, once remarking, “Having a clear mission and making sure you know that mission and making sure that mission comes through the company is probably the most important thing you can do for both culture and values.”
Airbnb was built upon a team that was talented and at the same time intimidated each other by how smart they were. Instead of quitting because of they were uncomfortable with each other’s intelligence, the team chose to raise their bar and work hard.
Airbnb believes in shaping good judgment in individuals instead of imposing rules across the company. Using this method, instead of working against each other, the partners worked with each other.
Read more in our article, The Importance of Company Culture at Airbnb.
In August 2009, Netflix Founder & CEO, Reed Hastings published a 124-page slide deck, entitled “Netflix Culture: Freedom & Responsibility” which quickly went viral and has since set the tone for many Silicon Valley startups.
Each of the Netflix company values (judgement, communication, impact, curiosity, innovation, courage, passion, honesty and selflessness) contained within the slide deck has four short defining statements that all start with ‘You…” to provide clarity to his employees and to build a great internal culture.
Netflix believes that by setting a few rules, high performing, responsible staff can creatively respond to opportunities, bounce back from the few mistakes they make, and continue innovating and growing.
Read more in our article, The Nine Netflix Company Values.
BMW looks for employees who have the team spirit, initiative and the desire in wanting to learn new things every day; hiring those who want to do and experience something extraordinary.
The employees of the BMW Group work in different countries on different continents, so the company has a unique focus on diversity and equal opportunity regardless of religion, race and gender to foster collaboration.
The BMW Group also encourages certain specific beliefs in their unique company culture. Taken from their website, these beliefs include: dissent, effectiveness, first-class performance, customer orientation, responsibility, adaptability, respect, trust, fairness, sustainability, society and independence.
Read more in our article, A Unique Company Culture: BMW Group.
IKEA’s founder Ingvar Feodor Kamprad was born and raised in Småland, in South Swede. It can be easily recognised as the source of the company’s values, which are apparent in the lifestyle, attitudes and customs of the place where it was born: togetherness, cost-consciousness, respect and simplicity.
IKEA looks at culture fit with their every new hire. They believe that the way of doing things is not to ask others what you should be doing. However, it is more to ask yourself what you should be doing and then get on with it.
As stated on their website; the great internal culture IKEA has is hard to describe but easy to embrace. It is a culture of enthusiasm, togetherness and willpower, born from their roots in southern Sweden.
Read more in our article, IKEA: Corporate Culture of the Heart.
Adobe is renowned for a great internal culture, and offering staff huge company perks. Onsite yoga and cafes, as well as paid family vacations and health care make up a big part of Adobe’s company culture, but it’s their four core company values that have enabled Adobe to build a great internal company culture:
- genuine: Adobe has strict code of ethics upheld by senior officers which ensures full, fair and accurate disclosure of information; as well as ample opportunity for staff to report violations;
- exceptional: the Adobe Research program works with some of the world’s best researchers and top university students to develop ideas that are at the forefront of computer science;
- innovative: with their award-winning Kickbox program Adobe gives any staff member who requests it, a red cardboard box filled with stationary, snacks and $1,000 pre-paid credit card to explore their idea, no questions asked, and;
- involved: Adobe provides scholarships and internships to students, investing in the next generation of creatives through programs such as Project 1324 and the Youth Coding Initiative.
Read more in our article, Insights into Adobe’s Award Winning Company Culture.
Regardless of what the mission statement or company values may be, the organisation’s internal company culture is what defines and manages the way its directors and employees think, feel and behave towards their work, and hence the overall success of the company as a whole.
We wish you the best in creating your own great internal culture!