You have probably heard the word “culture” thrown around in the workplace, but what does it mean? Culture is the combination of a company’s values, beliefs, expectations, ethics, and goals combined. In essence, it’s the personality of a company.
Workplace culture affects your business. Americans spend almost a third of their time at work, so their jobs can significantly impact their happiness and overall well-being. A negative workplace culture harms productivity and retention. With historically low unemployment, employers should be focused on keeping their employees engaged. However, 53% of the US workforce reports not being engaged in their work.[i] Therefore, creating and maintaining a positive culture will help protect a company’s bottom line and foster the competitive edge needed in the market.
What are the top three signs that your workplace culture needs improvement?
Lack of Community
It’s difficult to build community when employees are operating in silos. Look out for cliques or employees seeming to be isolated. A sense of community is built through systemic communication and collaboration. When a company lacks community, the right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing. This leads to inefficiencies and dysfunction. By promoting collaboration and transparency, employees work towards a common goal for the company. It is essential that everyone feels part of the team to build a true workplace community.
Gossiping and Whispering
Another problematic sign is overhearing gossip or the faint sound of whispers around the office. If your employees are resorting to this behavior, it’s an indication that they don’t trust one another. Those who participate in the gossip are engaging in a toxic negativity that diminishes their engagement in the company and with others. For those left on the outside of those conversations, they feel unnerved. It also means that everyone is distracted from the company’s mission. Rather than engaging in a productive conversation, employees are worried about their status in the organization. If you observe this behavior, nip it the bud.
Lack of Employee Engagement
There are clear metrics your company can use to see whether attendance or productivity is decreasing. These are signs that your employees may be disengaged. Because these factors are measurable, it’s a good opportunity to determine the effectiveness of your company’s efforts to improve the workplace culture.
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