No two businesses’ company cultures are the same, but there
are common elements you might notice in many company cultures. According
to a Harvard Business Review study, there are two dimensions that exist
in most companies:
People interactions range from
independent to interdependent. Highly independent organizations value team
members who thrive on their own and tend to measure individual success. Interdependent
businesses, on the other hand, measure group success and value employees who
work well in teams.
Change ranges from stability to
flexibility. Companies that lean toward stability prefer rules and hierarchy,
while organizations that value flexibility favor innovation and diversity.
Blending these two dimensions creates eight distinct
cultures. Combine the elements that make the most sense for your small business
to build the perfect company culture for you and your staff.
Cultures of enjoyment also value flexibility and
independence. These businesses tend to have an air of playfulness and
spontaneity to them. They’re perfect for employees who want to do what makes
them happy daily.
Results-based companies prefer stability and are highly
independent. They focus on the outcome of each project and often don’t worry
about the process of getting there. These businesses tend to value achievement
and expect their team to consistently meet and exceed their individual goals. Organizations
that focus on results are great for individuals who want clearly defined
objectives and will push themselves to surpass those.
Corporations that focus on authority prefer independence and
value stability. They tend to be competitive and focus on individual strengths and
achievements. They are great for workers who are motivated by accomplishing
Purpose-based businesses value interdependence and are
highly flexible. These companies tend to be centered around idealism and
altruism and may encourage their team members to regularly participate in
charities and other programs that benefit the community. They are great for
people who are extremely compassionate and want to make the world a better
Cultures of caring are highly interdependent and value
flexibility. They tend to focus on sincerity and good working relationships,
which often leads to a family-like environment. These businesses tend
to put the employees’ needs first, which can lead to high levels of
engagement and collaboration. They often offer access to professional and
personal development programs that will help their team grow as individuals,
while building strong relationships with their coworkers. They are great for people
who are looking for a supportive workplace.
Work environments based on order are highly interdependent
and value stability. They are often structured in a traditional top-down
hierarchy, and their employees have clear guidelines for all processes. Order-based
companies are great for workers who are most comfortable in structured
Organizations focused on safety tend to be highly stable and
value interdependence. They tend to be risk-conscious and pragmatic. When
presented with a new idea or opportunity, they tend to create a plan, instead
of jumping right in. They are great for employees looking for predictable workplaces.