Life at Perficient

Why Culture is So Important to Winning in Service Companies Today

Blog contribution by Tim Branham, Perficient Dallas General Manager
It really does not matter if you work for a $100 billion or a $1 million company, culture truly differentiates one company from another. How do we define culture? I like this definition on the web:

Culture refers to the cumulative deposit of knowledge, experience, beliefs, values, attitudes, hierarchies, religion, notions of time, …….and possessions acquired by a group of people in the course of generations through individual and group striving.

Today, while competing for business in the U.S. market, culture is becoming as important a differentiator as capability or size. Nurturing team spirit, creating friendly internal competition, involving your entire organization in your dreams and goals, these are the elements that inspire greatness in our teams.
After struggling for years with the large global IT services integrators, competing head-to-head for the same bone as it were, I was beginning to think running a profitable professional services business was impossible. Customers are more enlightened today around costs, bench-marking, best practices and service delivery frameworks than ever before in our history.
What can really differentiate one service provider from another? The overall experience of working with your team. (tweet this)
When you inspire a group of individuals to think differently and to use your culture as a differentiator it changes the rules of the game. When you take personally that a customer who does not receive services from your firm is missing a great opportunity to be so much better, then you have changed your relationship.
Taking time to really understand the customer, their business, “their customers,” and to build a relationship – these may sound cliche but are more relevant now than ever. I have personally witnessed the birth of a team of individuals coming together into a high-performance, cohesive services organization. Each understanding their part and importance in the process and their impact on the customer’s success. The deeper that understanding goes the more value they create for the customer. It is an awesome thing to see.
Take time to define, stimulate, encourage, and grow the sense of belonging and culture in your organization. (tweet this)
The larger the organization the more difficult this is, but you can always start in your department or division and let it spread from there.
Leaders, not all of this comes from you. Create an environment where the staff uses their creativity, experiences and ideals to help shape the culture in your group. Leaders are responsible for bringing all the pieces together to demonstrate to the staff, partners and ultimately customers, how the sum of the parts is so much more valuable to them and more fun in the process. Like Ohio State demonstrated in their epic victory in the National Championship this year, the deeper the team and the commitment the more spectacular the results.
Creating culture is not easy. But, embracing its importance in building a strong organization that is sustainable and supports growth, that is the real key to happiness and fulfillment in the workplace. (tweet this)
Dallas Perficient has been a fantastic case study in what energy, direction, and shared goals can do to accelerate growth and success in a market. The team in Dallas was already well-skilled, experienced, and motivated, but everyone was ready to go to the next level. Adding to the team’s leadership ranks and rallying the troops toward a vision of our possible future – these were the game changers that sparked a fire in our culture.
Read more about what it’s like to work at Perficient here.

Tim PhotoConnect with Tim Branham on LinkedIn here.
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Kristin Brashares

Kristin Brashares serves as Digital Senior Marketing Manager at Perficient and is a proud member of the Women in Tech ERG.

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