A strong corporate culture equals a strong company

Attracting and keeping the best employees is tougher than ever, and it isn’t unusual to hear executives discussing ways to improve employee retention rates. When your capital exists in the form of industry knowledge, it makes sense to build loyalty in those who hold that know-how.

For Molina, the culture is also fundamental to our mission; it is the “why” in all that we do. That’s why creating and nurturing a compelling corporate culture is critical to our company’s success and should be for any business.

Molina Healthcare has increasingly focused on building and maintaining our corporate culture, something that has become more challenging as the company has grown from one clinic to a national organization with more than 20,000 employees. In Ohio alone, Molina has expanded to serve the entire state, with more than 1,000 employees, many of whom work remotely or in the field.

One way Molina unites this diverse workforce is by aligning with a strong corporate mission that embraces the “why” of all that we do.

Keys to culture

The first step for any company looking to build a compelling culture is to define a corporate vision. Using simple terms, explain the ideal that drives the company.

For Molina, the vision is a future where everyone receives quality health care. That is an ideal that most people can get behind, and one that unites Molina employees. We are all working toward that vision, regardless of our role.

Next, make the vision approachable by narrowing it a bit, making it specific and emphasizing the core values the company holds above everything else.

For Molina, these values focus on the way we treat one another, and our members. They are things like making each other and ourselves accountable, accepting and offering feedback and coaching, and seeking creative solutions.

Your team also needs to understand the “why” of what your organization does. Most employees naturally know what their organization does but it’s more important to know why.

For Molina, our mission statement defines this. The “why” engages employees by making their purpose clear and allows them to be confident in how to contribute to the organization’s goals.

Accept ideas from every quarter

One key to building a successful culture, and one that Molina has embraced, is to focus on collaboration.

In Molina’s case, this meant revisiting our values and mission statement, and re-engaging staff through a series of culture building exercises. This effort encouraged staff to examine how every person’s influence impacted the teams they were a part of, and raised accountability among team members.

Like other companies with a distinct personality, Molina emphasizes a collaborative environment, encouraging innovation and input from every member of the team and acknowledging great ideas when they are brought forth.

When employees know they can make a difference because their input is valuable and their voice is heard, they are more likely to stay, work hard and contribute. And that kind of voluntary, enthusiastic commitment pays off in the form of customer satisfaction.


Ami Cole is the President of Molina Healthcare of Ohio, the state’s second largest Medicaid Managed Care Plan with 337,000 members.
Ami has more than 17 years of health care experience, including nearly 10 years at Molina before rising to become president. She is also active in the community, serving as a board member for the nonprofit After-School All-Stars.