The ROI of Company Culture

“What is the ROI of Culture?” Now that everyone has heard about Company Culture as the next big thing, they want proof. Heading toward this year’s Great Place to Work conference in Chicago the question of “why should I invest in Culture?” won’t likely come up — I’ll be among not just the converted, but those with the greatest convictions. Yet that’s the question the rest of the world is asking.
As I sit on my fully booked Southwest flight, the kibbiting flight attendants may not realize it but they’re putting everyone at ease. Humans are tremendously aware of other humans, and how they interact. Here, their trust and good relationship makes everything else (crowded aisles and overhead bins) easier to stomach. As a customer, knowing that I will not have a terrible (and maybe even good) experience keeps me coming back to my preferred carrier.
Contrast this with the United fiasco. Staff where explicitly trained to follow rules that were strictly crafted to prioritize short-term profitability and it’s staff over the customer. This Culture of regulation led to a series of failures that resulted in the biggest PR crises for an enterprise in recent memory.
Culture can convert customers to loyal advocates, or your next social media nightmare. It’s up to you to invest in the outcome you want.
What is the ROI of Culture? In the end, happy customers.