Workplace culture matters — and it isn’t enough to just say you have a culture.
Personality tests have become common in many workplaces and can help people learn how to best work together by considering different personalities and playing to each other’s strengths and weaknesses.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) looks at how you use your perception and judgment by asking questions that deal with how you view the world, your decisions and your work structure. The MBTI test allows you to appreciate and understand all different types of people, which is an important trait to have in the workplace. If you’re looking for a free alternative personality test that doesn’t require an administrator, check out 16Personalities.com.
StrengthsFinder is a book and online assessment that helps you find your individual top strengths. StrengthsFinder relies on answers based on judgment and personal preferences. After taking the assessment, you’ll discover your top five strengths and an action plan for how you can best act upon them. Companies can take it a step further and analyze the top strengths of all employees to develop a company top-five list. Finding the top strengths in your workplace helps to acknowledge what your company does well, as well as the areas for improvement. Once employees have explored some of these tests, sit down as a company or division and discuss the findings. You may discover interesting facts about your colleagues that will help you work together more effectively and enhance your company’s culture.
So, how can this work in the pest control industry? Innovative Pest Control, a Certified Sentricon Specialist™ company in Tyler, Texas, worked with their Dow AgroSciences territory manager to evaluate the workplace culture and create an actionable plan. It’s important to bring in someone outside of the company for employees to talk to. Employees will likely be more open and honest with an outside person, as it feels like a safe space. The first step to changing workplace culture is to assess it.
The territory manager conducted a culture analysis to find out how the employees felt about their workplace. Before the assessment, company leadership committed to change at least two things that would come out of speaking with the employees. Why go through this exercise if there’s no commitment to change? Sometimes you need a little bit of a gut check to reshape the way you think about things. The two big changes that happened for Innovative Pest Control: development of a formal leadership group and use of an internal communication tool.
If employees know how they can be successful and are empowered to do so, then they are more likely to be engaged and happy in their work. It’s no secret that employee retention leads to customer retention. People like doing business with people they like and people they trust. For most people, the face of the company is who they are interacting with on a regular basis. It’s the technician, customer service representative or the friendly voice on the phone that they’ve gotten to know. Those relationships are vital for success in a service industry, like pest control. Retaining more customers starts with retaining more employees.
Are you a company owner or manager? Download a sample workplace questionnaire for employees and invite a third-person entity to come in and help identify your company’s culture.