5 Common Root Causes of Poor Company Culture
Company culture plays a significant role in an organization’s growth, longevity, and overall success. Why? Because the culture in the workplace heavily affects the motivation and productivity of employees, which ultimately dictates their work performance, and oftentimes, their loyalty to the company as well.
With that in mind, companies should never overlook the importance of workplace culture. While the perfect company culture doesn’t exist, a workplace should have a positive culture that influences employees to perform at their best and treat their co-workers with the utmost respect.
If an organization finds itself needing corporate culture development solutions, here are the things that could be causing culture problems in the workplace.
1. Poor communication
Good communication is the foundation of every positive workplace. Companies must communicate their goals, values, and policies properly and regularly to keep all employees on the same page. At the same time, employees must have ample opportunities to voice their opinions to the management without fear of admonishment.
Without proper communication at the top, it is unlikely that communication at the bottom will be any more effective. That said, good communication should be present at all levels in the organization, starting from the executive management down to the entry-level employees.
2. Lack of adaptation
What has worked before may not be as effective in today’s time, and too many companies make the mistake of refusing to adapt to changes just for the sake of keeping traditional norms. However, no company can stay successful if the workplace does not adapt to changes and address rooms for improvement.
Moreover, this creates an unhealthy culture that promotes the lack of drive to improve. When employees see that the company is not making any effort to make things better, what is the point of striving for innovation or improvement?
3. Office gossip
Gossip has been and will always be a thing in any workplace, but there comes a certain point that it becomes a major issue. Gossip can cause rifts between co-workers, promote discrimination in the workplace, and generally make the working environment unhealthy. Furthermore, it can hinder the formation of good working relationships between teams, which ultimately affects everyone’s performance.
Unfortunately, it can be tricky to address gossip in the workplace. For one, tracking down the source of gossip can be difficult to do without making someone feel that they are being accused. Furthermore, it may be impossible to address office gossip without making it into a bigger issue, which can be a problem if the topic is extremely sensitive.
The best way for a company to minimize gossiping in the workplace is to reiterate the company policy for ethics-related guidelines (or modify it to emphasize the company’s intolerance for gossiping). This way, employees are reminded of the possible consequences of gossiping and will be less willing to risk their job for the sake of talking about someone behind their back.
4. Toxic management
It is often said that employees don’t leave because they hate their job, they leave because of bad bosses. This cannot be more true, especially with the younger generations that are less likely to tolerate bullying, manipulation, and harassment in the workplace.
A clear sign of toxic management is a high attrition rate. Employees do not just up and leave without a good reason, and if an organization is having trouble keeping their people, the first thing they should consider is their management. Are the managers treating their subordinates with trust and respect? Are they acting as leaders instead of just bosses that order people around? Do they strive to create a healthy work environment or are they the ones causing toxicity? If the management is the problem, the best way to solve it is a major reworking of the organization.
5. Lack of empathy and appreciation for employees
The happiest employees are the ones that feel appreciated and cared for by their employers. They are the ones that get their sick days approved without much hassle; the ones that receive ample praise and recognition; the ones that can approach HR about issues without fear of having it blow up in their faces. If a company lacks empathy and appreciation for its people, employees are unhappy, unsatisfied, and much more likely to contribute to the poor culture in the workplace.
There are a lot of root causes of poor company culture, and some of them are extremely difficult, if not impossible, to minimize. Nevertheless, companies facing cultural problems must put more effort into addressing the root causes if they want to achieve prosperity in the business, which will ultimately come from the employees.