Amidst the tech and startup boom, the term company culture receives a lot of buzz. Some attribute it to new generations’ ideals for what work-life should look like and others say it’s a result of the added time we actually spend working. After all, if you are spending a minimum of 8 hours a day working there, you should enjoy where you work right?

Businesses also concern themselves with company culture because happy employees tend to be productive ones. In other words, building a positive company culture can pay off leaps and bounds. That being said, this process can be easier said than done. Here’s a few simple steps to get you started.

Define Team Values

To satisfy the employee base as a whole, there needs to be a clear idea of the values that matter to staff. While they may not care about unlimited sick days, they may find a ton of motivation in something like Summer Fridays. In identifying what matters most to people, it becomes easier to build rewards or goals into the company as a whole. It also motivates and reinvigorates your team. Everyone feels involved and heard.

Communication is Key

Think about how a staff communicates in the office, the tone and the lines of communication between low-level and senior employees. These all factor into the overall morale of an office. It’s important to distinguish positive discourse from criticism. As described here, “Any constructive feedback is good; it assists with the performance of the company and helps you understand what areas need work, or are lacking. Be it performance review or employee feedback surveys, employee feedback makes the workplace better by listening to employees and helping them become more effective than they already are.” It’s also a two way street that in turn creates transparency with personnel and breeds community. Everyone wants to feel heard.

Let Culture Grow with You

As explained here, it’s important to maintain those values as your company and staff grows. While it may seem implausible, a single new hire can put the culture you worked so hard to develop if not properly vetted. “Put systems in place to make sure your culture is scalable and can grow with the employee count. In your hiring process, strive to give multiple people an opportunity to provide input on whether or not a candidate is the right fit.” Also to be fair to new employees, you want to ensure that their values and ideas can be met in your business environment. Otherwise the relationship will inevitably fail over time.