13 Secrets To A Great Company Culture

The Strategic Coach Team
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Listen to the podcast below or subscribe to the Team Success Podcast on iTunes.

Extraordinary Coach Culture: All Progress Starts By Telling The Truth

Your company culture has the power to determine your future in business.

It impacts the clients who want to work with you, the team members who want to work for you, and other companies interested in collaborating alongside you.

Being able to clearly and effectively communicate who you are as a company, in all that you do, is a huge advantage—one that helps you stand out in your industry.

Since Strategic Coach started in 1989, we’ve made a point of branding ourselves as an entrepreneurial organization above all else. This small distinction informs everything we do, from our approach to teamwork to our mindsets around change and new initiatives.

Below are our top 13 practices that ultimately define our Coach culture and direct us in how we believe in creating value.

  1. Put positivity first. We’re always more interested in what’s working than what’s not working.

    In most situations, we start each meeting and workshop with a Positive Focus—a practice where we take time to appreciate the personal and professional progress we’ve made in our lives.

    We emphasize those things that represent achievement, and this raises our confidence—as individuals, as teams, and as an organization. When people are confident about what’s working, they have the courage to look for improvements they can make. So the whole company is always becoming more confident, but you can only do that by reinforcing what already works.

  2. Lean into your strengths. We call it Unique Ability and it’s the cornerstone of Strategic Coach. We aim for everybody in our organization to have the daily experience of operating within their area of superior skills so they’re passionate about what they’re doing, the work they’re doing energizes them and other people, and they see themselves making constant, never-ending improvement.

    When you give team members the space to be themselves, they’ll never want to leave.

  3. Strive for constant improvement and innovation. If you’re not changing and evolving as a company, you’re probably going to be left behind.

    We operate with the mindset that we’re always getting better and improving. Everything we’ve done in the company since 1989 has been to enhance The Strategic Coach Program as a whole. We have clients who’ve been with us since the very beginning, and every quarter when they come to their workshop, they’re given a brand new experience, with new concepts and tools. Our innovation never stops.

  4. Run your company like a five-star hotel. Our experiences mean everything. What experience are you providing your clientele?

    We use our internal processes, procedures, and capabilities to make our client experiences unique, positive, and unforgettable. Everything that happens front of house is a result of the talent we have working behind the scenes.

    It’s like a great theatrical performance. People come to have a magical “Front Stage” experience. But in order to create that, you have to have a great “Back Stage.” This means that not only do you have to support everything that’s client-facing, you also have to support one another.

  5. Be generous with time off. We have a unique philosophy regarding days off. In most companies, time off is a form of pay, and vacation time increases with seniority so it becomes a form of status.

    We think about this differently. We like our team members to be fresh and rejuvenated when they come to work. So as soon as a new hire has completed a three-month trial period in the company, they get six weeks’ free time each year. We see free time as a necessity, not a reward.

  6. Always be growing. Everything we do in Strategic Coach, both in the Program and the company, is to encourage the personal growth of every individual we work with. What that means is your knowledge increases, your attitudes keep getting more powerful, and you consistently work on building greater skills and habits.

    Strategic Coach is designed to support the lifetime growth of our clients, and our Back Stage culture supports the lifetime growth of our team members.

  7. Be respectful. At Strategic Coach, we respect everybody. Most of all, we respect other people’s goals and decisions.

    Fundamental to this way of thinking is the idea that people do things for their reasons, not your reasons. People have their own lives, their own agendas, and their own goals, and you’ve got to respect that. We insist on respecting other people’s decisions and goals in life, and this is one of our motivating values that has become part of the Strategic Coach culture.

  8. Transform obstacles into strategies. Our motto is, “If things are going wrong, create; don’t complain.” We value working with people who treat obstacles as opportunities to create new, better ways of doing things.

    We believe everything is earned by being useful to other people through your talents, your intelligence, your creativity, and your contributions to the bigger growth of the company. As an entrepreneurial organization, we’re motivated by an environment that’s fluid, evolving, and constantly changing.

  9. All progress starts by telling the truth. Progress comes from using your intelligence and creativity to say, “This is not working, and this is what I think might be a possible solution.”

    As a growing organization, at any given time, there are probably lots of important things that aren’t working. And you have to be willing to be honest about what’s not working for you personally, what’s not working for your team, and what’s not working for the company. We believe that the more we tell the truth about our progress as well as our shortcomings, the faster we’re going to progress as a company.

  10. Be a class act. The central quality of a class act is graciousness—making other people feel special and making them feel at ease.

    Regardless of the situation, we believe in being considerate and gracious above all else. This helps us to avoid problems while producing lots of solutions.

  11. Walk the talk. In other words, promote integrity throughout your organization.

    We never ask of others what we’re not already doing ourselves. We do everything in the company that we ask our clients to do in the Program, so that there’s total credibility and complete trust. We do this to encourage a personal, intimate, and relationship-focused company culture.

  12. Encourage mistakes. As an organization, we want all of our skills, energy, attention, and effort going into ever-greater creativity, cooperation, and contribution.

    We don’t want to spend time defending ourselves, so we have no “defense budget.”

    Our mentality is one of “progress, not perfection”: you can make mistakes and learn from them, and that’s considered valuable.

  13. Show gratitude. Nothing contributes more to a positive environment than gratitude because you’re appreciating what you already have and you’re happy with your achievements and progress. This makes it so much easier to build on your successes as opposed to focusing on where you think you’re falling short.

    It’s the key to an all-purpose positive attitude, and it makes every moment in every situation better. If you think about it, the people you enjoy being around most in your life are those who are grateful. We believe in embodying this as an organization.

By defining and giving life to your company culture, you’ll get great clarity on your purpose and values. It’s also a great way to communicate with the world who you’re looking to attract and work with. Define your motivating values, and you’ll transform the future of your company.