What is organisational culture and why does it matter?
A company's culture is the tangible and intangible reflection of its core beliefs, values, and attitudes. It directly impacts how customers interact with an organization as well as speaks a lot about the story of a company and what it's like for employees to work there- ultimately defining a business's success or failure in today's ever-evolving landscape.
A successful organizational culture is a crucial component of any business and incorporates everything from clear goals to values that guides decision-making, inspiring leadership and an engaged workforce. Establishing effective processes for performance management can help create the perfect synergy between your staff’s ambitions and company objectives.
How can you assess the culture of your organisation or team?
It is important to understand and align your organisational culture so that it will support and be an enabler of your strategy. If the two are not aligned, it can be a negative influence and actually derail it.
The leadership and all members of an organisation need to be authentic to the values and operationalise the behaviours that define your culture. A positive culture leads to an environment where people can thrive and work towards achieving those shared goals.
Keeping that in mind, let's explore some action steps that you can take to assess the culture of your organisation or team:
- Conduct a culture audit
- Observe how teams interact
- Use employee feedback and surveys
- Analyze employee churn rate
- Gauge openness within Leadership
- Evaluate your onboarding process and incentive programs
- Seek feedback from external stakeholders
- Assess team performance metrics
What are the different types of Organisational culture?
Organizational cultures come in many forms, but there are a few that remain prevalent. Clan culture is centered around relationships and mentorship to foster a sense of community. Market culture motivates through competition and rewards for winners. Innovation-driven adhocracy replaces traditional structures with forward-thinking. The hierarchical structure relies heavily on top-down decision making which can be effective, yet antiquated in today's climate. Each company should curate an environment unique to its strategy by blending certain cultural elements as desired for maximum efficiency.
What are some common cultural values in organisations?
When embedded in everyday operations and decision-making processes, these five core values unlock the potential of agility within an organization, creating pathways to success.
- Collaboration: By bringing employees together at every level, a collaborative work environment encourages innovative thinking and problem-solving. It gives teams the ability to unlock their collective creativity and expertise in order to generate fresh ideas for customers – going beyond knowledge sharing or structure alone.
- Innovation: Innovation is a must for organizations that want to stay agile in the ever-changing business world. By encouraging creative thinking, employees are empowered to go beyond conventional ideas and explore new opportunities - from developing new products or services or even formulating entirely different approaches. Ultimately, these efforts help keep businesses at the forefront of their industry while capitalizing on exciting possibilities as they arise!
- Empowerment: By cultivating empowerment in their workplace, businesses are creating a culture of ownership that leads to improved engagement and productivity. Investing trust in employees gives them the opportunity to flex their creative muscles, collaborate effectively and bring greater innovation into the workplace - ultimately allowing companies to foster success!
- Transparency: Forging strong connections within the organization starts with trust. Leaders, teams, and individuals all need to feel supported in order for open communication channels to flourish. Transparency is key to cultivating a culture of safety that encourages creativity and drives acceptance of change among employees - unlocking incredible new potential along the way!
- Diversity: A diverse and inclusive culture is critical to corporate agility, allowing teams the opportunity to consider solutions from a wide range of perspectives. Without it, innovation becomes hindered due to an absence of variety in thought and experience
What are some tips for dealing with a negative organisational culture?
For employees, dealing with a toxic work setting can be extremely stressful. If not properly managed it may quickly lead to diminishing morale and job performance, along with an increase in staff turnover rates.
Fortunately, there are steps we can take to limit the effects of these detrimental office environments and create something more positive for everyone involved!
- Identify the problem: Uncovering what's going on inside the organization is essential to solving problems. By finding patterns and commonalities in its culture, we can begin to identify areas requiring adjustment for optimal results.
- Seek support and take action when needed: Cultivating strong partnerships with those who can offer insight and guidance makes us more prepared to tackle challenges. This way we are better equipped to comprehend the corporate culture, whilst knowing when it is appropriate to raise matters of concern directly with management.
- Develop coping mechanisms: Take charge of stress with proactive measures: Equip yourself to de-stress by taking up activities that promote both your physical and mental well being like exercising, meditating, or engaging in a creative pastime.
- Set boundaries: Set the stage for success by creating a balance between your professional and personal lives. Leave work-related stress at the office, so you can enjoy daily life to its fullest.
- Stay positive: While it's easy to get caught up in the humdrum of everyday tasks, take steps to stay centered on what truly matters: your impact and invaluable relationships with colleagues. Embrace all that each working day has to offer!
- Consider leaving: Negative vibes in toxic work environments can take a toll on your health and well-being. Don't settle for a career that makes you feel emotionally drained – instead, look towards positive avenues of growth that nurture mental, physical, and professional health!
How can you change an existing organisational culture for the better?
Achieving a better organizational culture is no easy task. It involves careful planning and the development of a cohesive vision that takes into account current realities. By effectively communicating desired changes, and encouraging personnel involvement and ownership throughout the process, you can create an environment where meaningful shifts take place - setting your organization up for success!