The phrase, team culture is a combination of two keywords (team and culture). I will be defining the two before we look into the words “team culture.” A team is a group of people that are together to either complete or work with one another. While culture is the way, a set of people think and behave, and it’s a cumulation of what happens in an environment. Different people are exposed to various cultures out there.
So, to put the two words together as a phrase, team culture is the way a set of people behave and think which stems from the attitudes and belief system that they all share. A collection of people that are working together to achieve a common goal and objective.
These shared goals and objectives can be positive or negative. We have different people with different gender; belief system, age, weaknesses, strength, and race. These are the things that make up a team culture, and it's necessary because wisdom is not in the head of one person.
Relating these necessary explanations to a company or an organization, we can say, companies have their culture that is shaped by the company's vision and mission. To actualize the vision and mission of an organization, a set of people are absorbed to work together as a team in other to bring the vision to pass. The leaders of a company begin and exhibit a culture, either positive or negative, which is as a result of the organizational values and decisions. A team will lose focus or work aimlessly when the culture of a company is not well established. You can read further definitions on What is Workplace Culture?
Let's examine the different kinds of culture and their importance:
In many organizations, the word “culture” has become a buzzword that people working with companies aspire to live by. Many times, companies project their culture to attract potential employees. Culture is created and adopted by the people that make up the organization. It can also be built and shaped over time, as different people take up different roles in the company.
When team members cooperate, share experiences and knowledge, support, and care for one another, it's called good team culture. People are excited to collaborate and do extraordinary things at work when they are aware that people around them care, support, and respect their point of view. Every member of a team wants to feel among. That's why you'll see an organization growing steadily because members can express their mind. This is both beneficial to the members and the organization. A good and strong organizational culture is necessary to build trust from employees and customers loyalty. A good company's culture can influence the bad culture possessed by the individual members of a company and vice versa.
Just as it was pointed out from good culture above, once the leaders of an organization are misbehaving in keeping pace with the company's culture, automatically the employees will be finding it hard also to fit in properly. For instance, some companies preach good customers care service as parts of their culture, but some of the leaders treat customers in a way that question the particular piece of their culture. This, of course, is toxic and contagious because some of the team members will pick this bad attitude exhibited by such leaders. Sometimes members’ bad culture can play over the company's because people make up the culture. Many employers have refused to express their mind concerning what they experienced from either customers or co-workers. This may be because the leadership is also involved in such activities. For instance, In the case of sexual harassment. This kind of situation becomes toxic when the team members cannot support to end such misfit of a company's culture. It is a good thing to follow and abide by what we preach. A harmful or toxic culture will usually birth unhappy, discomfort, and less productive workplace. This, of course, will tarnish the image of the organization. We also read in details on 25 Factors That Affect Workers Productivity (How do YOU Compete?)
1. Build leaders and not managers
2. Building and training members on active collaboration
3. Organize regular meetings for members
4. Have a feedback system in place
5. Promote and build personal development of team members
A good leader will be an example by first abiding to the company's culture. While a manager may not necessarily lead the way by being an example to team members on keeping the company's culture. The words and attitude of leaders and managers are different. A leader will say, let's do it while a manager will say do it or have you done it? Emphasizing mentoring, rather than managing, is highly crucial in developing a high team culture. It is good that the company's culture is well communicated with team members so that everyone collaborates. Regular training should be organized to remind team members the importance and positive impacts the organization's culture can have on the corporate brand. Leadership is best taught by example. Values, habits, and behavior flow from top-down.
We have heard that teamwork makes the dream work. The partnership has to do with members collaborating on critical factors that contribute to building a positive image for the organization. When team members bring ideas on how a project can be achieved and everyone’s view and thoughts are respected, members will continuously seek for how to improve personally. Personal improvement of team members will usually rob off on the company's vision and mission. Note that productivity from team members is a direct effect of engagement involved by members. Everyone seeks a sense of belonging and importance. Productivity will be high when there is a high engagement from everyone that makes up the team. Find out how you can design seating arrangement that enhances collaboration in the workplace in our article, “Create a Seating Plan That Works Best for Your Team.”
There is a mystery in meeting regularly among team members that usually foster a significant positive difference towards a goal. Meetings often build a smooth relationship and improve productivity. Meeting dates should be agreed on by everyone involved, and the agenda should also be communicated to prevent waste of time. Team members should be assigned responsibilities so that some members will not see the meeting as a responsibility of some set of people. Discussing the same issues over and over again in a meeting can result in boredom. The meetings should be problem-solving discussion platform. Unnecessary discussions that stray from the agenda shouldn't be giving prominence. Since some meeting times is also a relationship-building forum, team members should take some time to know one another. It opportunities to share what employees are facing at work and outside work. Understand the members of your team will allow you to understand other opportunities they are exposed to, their strengths and weaknesses, growing up, family, nationality, date of birth, etc. These are the critical element of building unity amongst team members. The meetings are an excellent avenue for companies to accurately identify and maximize the potential of members based on the data gathered while relating to them.
One of the crucial things that significantly improve an organization is feedback gathered from employees and customers. A feedback system should be simplified for easy collation not complicated. This feedback could be from a company to team members, from team members to an organization and among team members. The way we all see things differently and these are the little things that improve team culture. We have heard about members given untrue feedback, and this is a direct effect of bad relationships. When members cannot trust one another, feedback won't reflect the real picture of what need improvement and adjustments. When members in your team can trust you because they are aware you sincerely want the best for them, they'll open up to you entirely. A feedback system is a two-way channel that involves listening and responding.
Many organizations out there lay emphases on growing the company. The danger in this is that such companies will continue to have a harmful or toxic culture because the team members that make up the company are left out. You don't focus on building a company; you focus on developing and encouraging a smooth personal development of members. When team members are well trained, they will have the capacity to build the company's culture positively. Encourage everyone to acquire skills that will continuously expand positive culture. Nothing can substitute for experiences and personal development because it makes it easier for members to take up responsibility at a different level in the organization. One beautiful thing about digitalization is that anyone can enroll in various courses online.
Continuous access and knowledge of how to utilize tools that will ease the process of performing some task and activities should be encouraged. Many organizations may be reluctant to promote this because some feel once team members are allowed to go for further training, members will have the capacity to hunt after other opportunities. Especially if the training is at the expense of the organization. It is worthy of note that a good team culture births a great business. These days people want to work with companies that they can achieve their personal life goals while meeting the company's vision.
At the center of every great team culture, some people hold different personal culture and belief systems. So, developing and encouraging team members usually, bring about successful business and build customer loyalty.
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