Everyone who works in a company can understand that a good team culture is crucial for company success. If employees don’t have a similar attitude and behavior, everyone gets affected – the performance, the relationships, and ultimately, the business fails.
If you lead a young company with a team culture yet to be built, or you’re not satisfied with the current situation in the office, do not feel discouraged. There are always effective strategies on how to achieve a level of understanding and cooperation that you wish for.
What is Team Culture?
If we go by the basic definitions, when the word “culture” is used in business terminology, it means that the people who share the workplace, also share the same (or at least similar) behaviors, attitudes, beliefs, values etc. It’s not something that’s strictly defined and every company has its own way of functioning.
Simply put, Company culture is its personality and its character. It’s what sets a company apart from others.
Why Is Culture So Important?
Since we’re talking about something that is built by the people who work in the same environment during a longer period, the thing that makes team culture important is that it affects everything, both socially and economically. Employees spend at least eight hours together in the same four walls and they are the ones who make the product of your business. If they’re not communicating with each other in the right way and if they’re not satisfied with the atmosphere, the overall employee performance will decline.
What Makes a Good Culture?
When the communication among employees is on the right level, when there’s a healthy competition, and when your teams show good qualities, that’s when you’ll know that your employees are compatible for one another. Some other indicators are showing support, knowledge, having mutual respect, and patience. People who work in a healthy environment show confidence and like to take challenges.
What Does It Mean to Have a Bad or Toxic Team Culture?
One of the first things that show a toxic atmosphere and culture in a company is rigid and strict rules that apply to the workers. Rules come from the people on the top positions – managers, team leaders, and CEOs.
Wondering how to recognize it? There are many signs:
- Missing list of core values and the leaders who don’t follow them
- High employee turnover rate
- Broken interview processes
- Gossip, lack of empathy and noticeable unhappiness among employees
- A visible gap between workers and management
- Hyper competition
- Deteriorating performance levels
- Frequent conflicts
If you recognize one of these signs as present ones in your workplace, it’s time to do something about it.
Once you enter a company, you can feel its culture in the air – if you can make sure the feeling is positive, your job is halfway done.
How to Define Your Company’s Culture?
This question needs a different type of approach – every business is made of teams, teams are made of specific individuals, and every individual is different. If you wish to find out what the team culture in your workplace is like, you need to talk to the employees and find out about the way they think and act. Human resources have a huge part in team culture development – if an enterprise has a good HR manager, they will be able to find out what types of employees share the same office, and how to help them cooperate better.
One commonly made mistake is judging people easily and making a wrong opinion on someone. Every team should focus on finding mutual language and understanding, motivating everyone to participate in group discussions, decision making, and all kinds of activities. Good communication and understanding will surely lead to increasing performance levels which is a fantastic thing for the business and for the personal satisfaction and growth of every employee.
Before making any judgments, get to know the person and be sure that you don’t have a wrong impression.
Why Does a Company’s Culture Become Damaged?
It sometimes happens that a company once had a good culture and that it went bad. The most possible reason for that is that something went wrong with the trust at the top level of the organization. If the employees don’t have someone to talk to about their problems at the workplace, they will become unsatisfied over time. Another reason could be that a problem in the industry occurred that impacts the influx of money and thus the salaries. No matter how good someone got along with their coworkers, they won’t be happy with their position if they don’t make enough money for a living. If you’ve found yourself in a situation where you recognize a bad team culture, it’s time to make an effective strategy and to apply it. A damaged culture that lasts long enough can have devastating consequences for the business and might leave many people without their positions since a lot of people quit their jobs when they feel a toxic company culture.
How to Fix It?
Nothing’s lost – there’s a number of ways to repair a damaged culture and creating an effective one. The tension and the bad atmosphere can be eliminated by removing the recognized culprits of the bad culture. Those could be things like misunderstanding the core values of the organization or a lack of them – if employees are confused by what they are supposed to do and how they should behave, that might lead to bad culture and unsatisfying results. Making sure the leadership is doing their job correctly and that they are present to notice every slight change among the colleagues is critical. Workers should feel free to approach their leader and to let them know what they think about the environment they are working in – If the employees aren’t giving adequate feedback to their superiors, nothing can be done to improve the quality of organization.
People who work in the same enterprise should be motivated to be honest and open about their feelings and desires on a certain work position, so try to find a way to reinforce a positive approach in the office with rewards and acknowledging the effort. People like to hear that they did a good job, so prompt feedback is important.
Still, you need to keep in mind that sometimes feedback isn’t enough – it should become a dialogue. Managers can’t just make people like and trust them. It’s something that is built with time and that’s based on acts, not just talk. A strong management team will know how to handle the pressure and to build a trusting relationship with employees. Strong culture in a business is made of people who have the same goal and the same drive to accomplish it. Once the goal is clearly set and there are people who can take the wheel, the company will start to feel like a family.