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Forty-two percent of staff would rather work a sixty-hour week than work for an organisation that doesn’t value its culture according to a survey conducted by Speakap.

The study, which gathered responses from a thousand employees in both the UK and US reinforced how powerful workplace culture can be when it comes to attracting and retaining staff, as fifty-eight percent admitted they would take a job with a competitor that demonstrated a better workplace culture.

Looking in more detail, forty-five percent of UK respondents felt that respect and fairness were the most important aspects of positive workplace culture followed by trust and integrity, and teamwork, which were favoured by twenty-four and eight percent of respondents respectively.

Whilst most will agree that there has been an increased focus on workplace culture in recent years, a third of staff still feel as though their organisation is "stuck in its ways" and won’t consider methods to improve its culture.

Interestingly, there is a suggestion that organisations are struggling to grasp what makes a positive workplace culture and may be directing their efforts incorrectly as a result. Patrick Van Der Milj co-founder and chief product officer of Speakap, explains that organisations often “mistake physical perks and amenities as being a critical part of workplace culture”.

He adds that “culture is the sum of values traditions, beliefs, interactions, behaviours and attitudes” and that by focusing on “superficial benefits” organisations are demonstrating a misunderstanding that may actually be counterproductive.

With this in mind, organisations would do well to review their own workplace culture and see where there may be room for improvement. Remember that although benefits such as free lunches and regular social outings may be appreciated, they are unlikely to be a deciding factor in attracting staff to your business or retaining them in the long run.

Instead, organisations should look at more substantial aspects such as open and honest communication between staff and senior figures, a commitment to training and upskilling employees, and promoting fairness and equality for all.

Given the trends, it is reasonable to predict culture will continue to become a more influential aspect of the workplace going forwards. With this in mind, organisations should ask themselves if they can really afford not to dedicate significant time and effort into maintaining their own positive workplace culture.

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