I am part of the Human Resources team at Comfone, and one important HR task is motivating staff. In this blog, I discuss the ways in which Comfone creates a positive company culture to bring motivation and workplace satisfaction to our team. Why is a strong company culture important? In a recent study, 88% of employees researched believed tha…
Why is a strong company culture important?
In a recent study, 88% of employees researched believed that a strong company culture is key to business success, and a positive work culture is linked to higher rates of employee engagement, which has been shown to improve productivity and profitability.
These are important statistics, but for me it goes deeper than that.
When we consider that we spend at least as much time at work as at home, I find that working in a friendly environment helps to boost my mood, work better with colleagues and generally feel great about working at Comfone!
Company culture: 10 important elements
In my opinion, these are the top 10 ways that Comfone builds company culture:
Internal and external transparency is a key company asset. Our customers get full visibility of their services and apps, and Comfone employees can openly communicate with each other and management. We have a monthly all-staff meeting, where we keep up to date on all company matters, including finances. We share the latest updates from each service and department and enjoy each other’s successes. In addition to this, Daniel Heutschi, our CEO, has an ‘open-door policy’ for any employees to ask him anything about the company.
2. Short decision-making paths
We operate on trust and respect, meaning that our staff can make decisions on what is best for the service without having to go through a lot of ‘red tape’. We avoid too much bureaucracy, which can dampen motivation when processes are too long, and instead provide people with the means to make great decisions for the best of the services and companies.
3. Flat hierarchy
Following on from my previous point, we enjoy a flat hierarchy at Comfone. This system allows more independence to the staff and promotes employee involvement through decentralised decision-making processes.
Although we remain a small company of 115 people, our staff body has over 40 different nationalities, and we speak more than 30 languages between us. This not only benefits our customers through working in their own language wherever possible, but also as colleagues we have an exciting international environment, a lot of acceptance and tolerance. We all learn from each other, which makes our interactions much richer.
5. Flexible working
Having happy staff in a diverse work force is really important to us, and by managing workloads, working times and place of work, we can help people with work/life balance. We give our staff based in Bern the opportunity to work from home, and we offer some flexible working opportunities to staff which helps to ensure the diversity of our work force and satisfaction of our staff.
6. Friendly environment
We nurture a nice atmosphere for people to work in. People always greet each other in the halls, and we have the opportunity to take a coffee together in the morning and afternoon every working day, which helps us to get to know people from different departments, services and teams. Coming into work and having friendly interactions with colleagues is vitally important when creating company culture, as it ensures that we keep all channels of communications open. We pride ourselves on having all services in one place on the Key2roam Platform, and that includes having staff from various departments working together.
7. Further training
We offer the opportunity for further training at Comfone. Whether it is language lessons for staff looking to increase their communications abilities, further studies in coding, leadership training or even apprenticeships or further education, we are here to support staff to learn new skills, develop as people and build competences for the future.
8. Sharing success
We make a point out of sharing our successes. If a project has gone well or is ahead of schedule, it is presented at the full staff meeting that we have once a month so that everyone can congratulate the successful employee and team. We also share in each other’s projects with many different benefits – from our internal reward systems to evening gatherings of colleagues.
9. Office culture
Our Headquarters is based in Bern, in a large modern building not far from the city centre. We have large and bright shared offices, with a lot of desk space and modern equipment. We have a cafeteria onsite, serving lunches made onsite with a fresh variety of dishes. Having a nice space to work is vitally important for company culture and motivation, because by showing that we invest in our staff, we are bringing extra value to them.
10. Activities/ team events/ company events
Spending time doing something other than working together helps to strengthen bonds between both team members and colleagues in general. We host a number of events throughout the working year, from a summer event spent on the river Aare in Bern, to a Christmas party, a number of aperos where drinks and nibbles are served, a Swiss brunch, ice cream truck, lunchtime walking groups, BBQs and even more!
HR team perspective
Now that we have heard about Comfone in general, I will now share what happens in the HR team to build motivation.
I am part of the small HR team, made up of myself and my manager, Sarah. We work closely together and have other ways of bringing great motivation to our team, which I have listed below.
- Creating a sense of meaning and purpose in the tasks – and avoiding doing things which will not add value or purpose to the team and company in general
- Challenging tasks – it’s great to do something every day which takes you out of your comfort zone and into your learning zone. This brings a sense of achievement when you complete something you have never tried before!
- Providing inputs – my manager does not simply tell me what to do, but I am given space and opportunities to bring my own ideas and provide inputs into certain areas, which gives me a real sense of value.
- Decision-making – following on from my last point, I am also encouraged to be part of the decision-making process and help to affect things at Comfone.
- Team spirit – the HR team works closely together every day, building great working relationships and a nice feeling in the team. Having a shared identity builds a fun team spirit and good time at work
- Part of a larger team – having the feeling of being part of the successes is important because it adds value
- Regular feedback – receiving regular feedback is vital for a good working environment, as I clearly understand any areas for improvement or where things went well. This means that I can change my work where appropriate to provide what is required.
I believe that a positive company culture is vital for staff. It builds employee’s trust in both the company and colleagues. It makes coming to work feel like a pleasure rather than a chore. It brings positivity.
At Comfone, we consider ourselves to be a large, extended family, and building great relationships starts in our offices, and continues through to our customers.