We are happy to share with you a post contributed by our customer, Inflow. Inflow is an eCommerce marketing agency providing strategy and implementation to eCommerce brands across digital channels like conversion optimization, SEO, paid advertising, content and inbound marketing. Inflow is on the Inc. 5000 list of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies, and is a Google Partner agency.
We all like to think we know our company’s culture. As a business leader, you might have even taken steps to define and nurture your company’s culture. There is nothing wrong with intentionally setting out to build the culture you want to work in. Challenging? Fun? Collaborative? Competent? Sounds good to me!
How do you know the rest of your team sees the actual company culture in the way you think or would like it to be? Disconnects happen, and the sooner management knows about them, the sooner they can address the issues and everyone can move on to doing what they enjoy, like helping clients be more successful or collaborating with others on a challenging project.
Anonymous surveys definitely help people feel more comfortable to share truthfully and have many benefits when used in addition to face-to-face discussions.
Besides getting teams to candidly share feedback, leaders also have the problem of measuring results over time. When nurturing company culture, it helps to know where to invest time and resources, and when to take a hands-off approach. It helps to know if the efforts you are putting forth are improving the situation, and the happiness and effectiveness of your team.
Inflow uses several tools for staff feedback and gauging the culture. Weekly conversations happen with 15Five, which allows managers to keep in touch with everyone on their team. The idea is it should take no longer than 15 minutes to fill out each week and no longer than five minutes for the manager to review.
RoundPegg provides Inflow’s leadership with insights into how each one of us works best as individuals, teams, departments and as a company.
Above is the actual Culture DNA Profile Report for Inflow
Learn more about the RoundPegg Culture DNA Profile
Our marketing team prefers well-defined roles, but also wants the ability to be creative within those roles. They prefer a supportive environment over competitiveness.
RoundPegg has four categories for culture type: Command, Competence, Cultivate and Collaborate, each having its own strengths and weaknesses. Inflow has team members in every category – with the clear majority preferring a “Collaboration” culture.
The end result of the survey helps team members of different culture types communicate better with each other. For example, my culture type is “Competence.” The description above, which would apply to about 40 percent of my teammates, tells me I need to work more closely with them. It tells management that silos need to be broken down, that impromptu brainstorming sessions should be encouraged, and that they want to have a say in how their teams, and this company, are run.
One difference that sticks out between these two culture types is consensus building. This is something Competence culture types need to keep in mind when leading Collaborative culture types.
Engagement has noticeably improved and into our third iteration of the survey, things continue to trend up. Team members who know they are valued and whose input is acted upon are more willing to step up when it counts. This shows up in better results for our clients.
Diversity is Good!
Most people’s first instinct when viewing the results of a RoundPegg survey is to see how well they fit in with the company culture overall. If our company is Collaborative, does that mean I shouldn’t be here because my culture type is Competency?
Diversity allows team members to learn and grow from each other. It stimulates new ideas and fresh perspectives. RoundPegg doesn’t bring us closer to a completely homogenous culture (who would want that!?). Instead, it helps our individuals in our diversified company work with each other more happily and effectively.
RoundPegg has been helpful to our organization internally. Now we’re exploring how the tool might help us better understand our clients, so we can provide better service and more actionable deliverables for their specific needs. We’ll let you know how it goes!
Christina Griggs is the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for Inflow. Griggs has worked as a short-interest trader in London, an investment advisor with Dean Witter (now JP Morgan) and as CFO for a successful corporate housing firm. She has also helped more than 200 organizations develop and maintain fiscal and operational structures as a business consultant.