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5 Ways to Boost Company Culture Following Layoffs

5 Ways to Boost Company Culture Following Layoffs

When companies commit to layoffs, it can be difficult even for the employees who remain with the organization. Employees often feel a sense of guilt and frustration. This can harshly affect the culture within the company, which will likely drive down productivity and success. 

We have cultivated a list of five ways organizations can improve their culture following layoffs. Read on to learn about these strategies and how to implement them within your organization. 


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1. Foster Open Communication

Fostering greater communication is crucial for small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) following layoffs. 

Scheduling regular team meetings to discuss the company's progress and address employee concerns is a great starting point for boosting communication strategies. These meetings can also serve as opportunities to update employees on any changes or initiatives that the company is undertaking. By making these meetings a regular occurrence, employees will feel more comfortable sharing their thoughts and concerns, fostering open communication and building trust between management and staff.

In addition to team meetings, 1:1 check-ins with employees can help keep communication flowing between individual employees and their supervisors. This can help you understand individual concerns and provide more personalized support. These check-ins can also serve as an opportunity to assess employee performance and provide feedback, which can be especially critical for employees who may feel uncertain about their future with the company.

Organizations should also utilize digital communication tools such as email, instant messaging, and video conferencing to stay in touch with employees. Encourage employees to use these tools to ask questions, share ideas, and collaborate, fostering a culture of open communication and teamwork.


2. Provide Resources and Support

Whenever companies conduct layoffs, they should proactively offer support and resources to employees, promoting positive company culture.

Losing colleagues and friends in a layoff can be emotionally strenuous for remaining employees. Employers can offer emotional support by providing access to counseling services or an employee assistance program (EAP). Another approach is to create a space for employees to share their feelings and concerns, like facilitated group discussions or an anonymous feedback platform.

Remaining employees may be concerned about their career growth and job security following layoffs. Employers can offer professional resources, like workshops, training programs, or career coaching, to help employees develop new skills and advance their careers. By investing in their employee's professional development, employers demonstrate their commitment to their workforce and can boost employee morale and engagement.

Layoffs can also create a sense of anxiety among remaining employees. Organizations can offer job security by providing clear communication about the company's plans and priorities, as well as offering opportunities for employees to provide feedback and contribute to decision-making. Employers can also provide resources to help employees stay up-to-date on industry trends and advancements, which can bolster their confidence.


3. Assess Company Values

When a company goes through layoffs, it can create uncertainty throughout the office. By reassessing the company's values, organizations can reaffirm their commitment to their mission, purpose, and vision. 

The first step in reassessing company values is to gather feedback from employees. Surveys or focus groups can gather employee opinions on what they feel the company stands for and what values are most important. This feedback can be used to help shape the company's values and reinforce the importance of those values among employees. BerniePortal's Surveys feature is an excellent tool to help organizations manage their surveys from employees. Having an online tool like this can be particularly helpful when gathering surveys from many different employees. 

Organizations must ensure that the company's values align with its overall mission and goals. This can create a sense of purpose among employees and reinforce the importance of the company's mission.

Once company values have been reassessed, it is important to communicate them effectively to employees. This can include updating the company's website and internal documents to reflect the new values and incorporating the new values into training programs and employee onboarding materials. By communicating values effectively, employees will understand the company's priorities and expectations, which can help create a sense of unity and cohesion among employees.


4. Invest in Employee Development

Employers should offer training and development opportunities that will impact employee development. These could be in the form of workshops, seminars, and online courses. These opportunities can help employees acquire new skills and knowledge, which can enhance their job performance and prepare them for future career growth.

Providing mentorship and coaching is another great way employers can invest in employee development. By connecting employees with experienced mentors and coaches, employers can help workers learn from others' experiences, receive feedback and guidance on their work, and develop new skills and competencies.

Employers should also support employee education and certification. This can include offering tuition reimbursement, providing time off for classes or exams, or sponsoring employees' certification or licensure efforts. By supporting employees' educational and professional goals, employers can demonstrate their commitment to their employees' growth and success.

You must evaluate employees for negative behavior and attitude. While some employees may have negative feelings after layoffs, it is important to check in regularly. Employees with a negative outlook can bring down the entire team's morale. Gary Vaynerchuk, Chairman of VaynerX and CEO of VaynerMedia & VeeFriends, says this about company culture: 

“Company culture is the most important metric when it comes to the business's overall performance.

Even one toxic employee can bring down the efficiency of the entire company and can go unscathed because they are a "top-performing employee."

The truth is that "top performer" is a hidden cost, and while it may appear that they are doing better than the others, it's really because their toxicity is bringing down everyone else's performance, and if that toxic employee was let go everyone else would be happier and more efficient.

Make employee morale the #1 priority of your business, and the profits will follow.”

Vaynerchuk is saying that toxic employees can bring down the foundation your company culture is built on. And often, nothing is done because the employee is a “top performer.” Be sure that you are evaluating your employees individually to determine if they are the right fit for your culture. 



5. Celebrate Successes

Celebrating successes helps to recognize employees' achievements and milestones, create a sense of pride and motivation, and foster camaraderie among team members.

One way to celebrate employee success is by acknowledging and appreciating individual and team contributions. This might mean announcing their achievements publicly—such as on Slack channels or via email—giving them a personalized thank you note or offering a small gift or reward. By showing employees their efforts are valued and appreciated, companies can foster a sense of loyalty and commitment among team members.

It is also an opportunity to encourage team collaboration. Hosting a team lunch or social event is a great example of how employers can help team members bond and share their experiences. 

By creating a space for team members to connect and collaborate, companies can strengthen the overall team dynamic and promote a positive company culture by creating a space for team members to connect and collaborate.

It is crucial to align celebrations with company values. For instance, if one of the company's values is innovation, celebrating an employee who came up with a creative idea can reinforce the importance of that value among team members. By celebrating successes that align with company values, companies can reinforce their core beliefs and principles and help employees feel connected to the company's mission and purpose.


Additional Resources

You can also stay informed, educated, and up-to-date with all things HR by using BerniePortal’s comprehensive resources:

  • BernieU—free online HR courses, approved for SHRM and HRCI recertification credit
  • BerniePortal Blog—a one-stop-shop for HR industry news
  • HR Glossary—featuring the most common HR terms, acronyms, and compliance
  • HR Guides—essential pillars covering an extensive list of comprehensive HR topics
  • HR Party of One—our popular YouTube series and podcast, covering emerging HR trends and enduring HR topics 

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