How to Listen, Learn & Create a Success – Fostering Company Culture

By Rob Catalano, Co-Founder, WorkTango*

Company culture is more than just ping-pong tables and video games at work. It’s about cultivating the type of company mindset that upholds a positive set of values that make employees feel inspired, accepted, and heard.

As Recode states: “Creating a thriving, positive workplace culture doesn’t “just happen,” nor will installing a foosball table instantly fix a company. Culture has to be created and worked on all the time, just like any other metric of success. All the foosball tables in the world won’t help if your employees are afraid to be seen using them.”

What do your employees want?

A positive company culture really boils down to a high quality of life at work, which increases employee engagement, and consequently, raises profitability. But how is it defined?

According to the Globe & Mail, quality of life includes: “better career development opportunities, a corporate culture more aligned with their values and greater work-life balance. In fact, when asked which they value more – money or quality of life – 58 per cent chose the latter.”

How can you Improve Quality of Life at Your Company?


When employees are excited about what they’re doing, they’ll do it with more enthusiasm. But in order for that to happen, there must be clear communication about the values and goals of the company, and a clear bridge between employee motivations and company expectations. This is where work moves from good to great. And isn’t that what everyone wants?

Earlier this year, Michael Bungay Stanier joined us for a webinar and spoke on the topic of leadership and doing great work (the blog overview can be found here ). He defined “great work” as something that is both impactful and meaningful. And when employees feel connected and empowered, that’s when great work and quality of life thrive.


Having an understanding leader makes all the difference. We all know that employees don’t leave companies, they leave managers. However, on the flip side, employees also work their hardest and their best for managers who they respect and appreciate. According to Gallup, “managers account for at least 70% of the variance in employee engagement scores across business units”.

What makes a good leader? This is another blog post all in itself, but the first step for any successful leader is having access to employee voice. In order for a leader to provide high quality of life, he or she must know what the employees want and need. And this will reap great benefits for the company. Forbes details a study pertaining to approximately 50,000 managers, from which they determined: “Poor leaders lost money; good leaders made profit; and extraordinary leaders more than doubled the company’s profits in comparison to the other 90%!”

When employers are taught to actively listen to their employees, this is when employees can reach their true potential.


Quality of life at work does not mean a fixed state. Everything is in motion, progressing, and every morphing and changing into something better. Just look at the iPhone (we hope it’s getting better). Employee experiences should be no different, and it’s proven that employees are happier in jobs that offer room for them to learn and grow and advance their careers. This nurtures positive company culture and higher quality of life. Human Resources Today states that:

“Helping employees create career development plans and making it a priority focus area demonstrates genuine appreciation for your people. By aiding them in defining and working toward their career goals, you can significantly enhance their productivity, performance, and engagement.”

How do you find out what’s working with your career growth development? You open the conversation, whether in person or through an online database. You invite the employees into that conversation. And you listen.


While a paycheck and a ping-pong table are both great aspects of employees satisfaction, there are many other factors that come into play. Quality of  life at work makes a huge difference in productivity, satisfaction, and employee retention. Communication and active listening allow employees to engage and have a voice.

When employees have a voice, and when employers listen, all the pieces begin to fall together for an engaged workforce, a high quality of life at work, and an inspirational and unbeatable company culture.


Join NCHRA and Rob Catalano for this very special online course: 

Listening to Employees: How Innovative Companies Activate Employee Voice — eProgram (3 Sessions) –– Tuesday, June 12 – Tuesday, June 19 (3 sessions: 6/12, 6/14, 6/19) 12:00pm – 1:30pm.

Learn more and register here.

As HR professionals, we need to be listening to our employees and creating space for them to share and speak. Don’t miss out on this important and necessary course! Qualifies for 4.5 General HRCI Recertification Credits / 4.5 SHRM PDCs.

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