Ideas for Improving Your Team Culture in the New Year

Managers who create positive, respectful team cultures are tremendous assets to their organizations: they help protect it from the legal, financial and reputation risk; they  create large productivity gains; they are guides along the path.

As you look ahead to the new year, here are three steps you can take to make your team culture even stronger:

  1. Model the behavior you expect. Employees are professional “boss watchers.” What they see you do, they will tend to do also (both the bad and the good).
  2. Spend time talking with your team very candidly and directly about your company’s values, the behaviors expected and the workplace culture desired. Don’t assume people “just get it.” They don’t. Converation about values and what they mean, with practical examples, makes the culture come together.
  3. Take time to talk about what success it looks like when it’s achieved the right way. And talk how achieving success the wrong way destroys a team and a company; it very much will.

A company I once worked for had a simple statement about it’s values: We will do the right thing. This simple statement held tremendous power. It drove behavior based in the highest ethical standards. It triggered great conversations.

What’s your simple statement that encapsulates your values and the culture you’re seeking to create? Perhaps this is a topic for the next discussion with your team.

[Photo By Viktor Hanacek]

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