Misconceptions That May Harm Your Company Culture
Mar 22, 2023 · 9 mins read ·Company Culture
It takes time, constant effort, dedication to communication and transparency, and buy-in from all levels of the business to create a solid and healthy workplace culture.
Many businesses think having a mission, vision, and value statement will help them express their culture. They continue to take a back seat, trusting that their staff and official pronouncements will handle the work on their behalf.
This is how toxic cultures form and quickly get out of control, leading to a widely publicized crisis that damages a company’s reputation.
Workplace culture must be prioritized from the start and improved daily. That applies to everyone, including board members, contract workers, hourly employees, full-time employees, entry-level employees, and even C-suite employees.
Whether it is toxic or healthy, culture shapes how people interact, communicate, and work and the attitudes, actions, and values they uphold.
In this post, we explore widespread myths businesses hold about workplace culture and how they negatively affect your business.
Company culture misconceptions
Every area of your company is impacted by your organizational culture, from retention and growth to staff productivity and engagement. If not taken seriously, creating a positive employee and corporate growth atmosphere can be expensive.
Leaders can use culture to further their aims and objectives, but it can also obstruct people from producing their best work. Here are five typical misunderstandings concerning corporate culture that your company should avoid.
1. Culture is a set of values
The ideals that many business leaders want their organizations to uphold are carefully defined. Then, to show their dedication to high standards, they display them on the walls and promote them in company communications.
Although they can be motivating, values do not determine a company’s culture. Values are concepts; however, an organization’s true culture may be seen in the behaviors and perspectives of its employees.
No matter what motivational posts are displayed in the lobby, that culture may be positive or harmful. Leaders can change their organization’s culture by launching a program that raises expectations for behavior.
Employees are equipped with a cultural effort to live out those principles and go above and beyond.
2. Culture is about the vibe and perks
It’s widely believed that an organization’s culture is defined by its tangible assets and perks.
But the truth is the way individuals behave at work, coordinate with one another, and interact with clients and suppliers defines the culture.
Their attitude toward their jobs and the degree to which they feel a sense of loyalty to their employer both show this. Even when you can bring your dog to work, a culture can be excellent, middling, or even deplorable.
3. Culture is a soft quality that does not impact your bottom line
Many corporate executives discount culture as a “soft” quality unimportant to the strategy and objectives underpinning financial success.
Managing daily operations and preparing the practical aspects of their business would advance their companies, so they are more focused on these tasks.
But, whether they are aware of it or not, their firm’s culture plays a critical role in deciding the success of their enterprise. It might have the most impact on profitability.
Every facet of a company’s operations is influenced by the attitudes and behaviors of its employees or by its culture. Evidence can be found in a company’s overall consumer perception, degree of productivity, and dedication to quality.
No matter how excellent a company’s goods and services are, rivals can always match or surpass them. But, it is impossible to replicate an exceptional team with a strong culture.
It’s the only thing that will set a company apart from competitors that are only concerned with making money.
4. Culture is just a management gimmick
A company’s culture is its lifeblood and reflects how employees interact and work together. It is a reality; it is not a fad.
It’s vital to note that initiatives designed to enhance culture may turn into “flavor of the month” efforts to energize staff. A thriving culture program requires continual work; it is not a management tool with a finite shelf life.
It is essential to constantly teach, talk about, and model the behaviors that will lead to organizational success.
By prioritizing culture improvement, leaders proactively create a foundation to maximize their company’s strengths. And that is a trend that will never fade.
5. A company’s culture is set in stone
Another frequent belief is that an organization’s culture “is what it is” and that if it endures, nothing can change it.
Also, if a company has a positive culture, others may think they were fortunate to start with the right people and may doubt that it can be improved upon.
Culture, or the behaviors and attitudes of a population, is constantly subject to change, for better or worse.
Leaders who consciously work on their organization’s culture can change undesirable behaviors or enhance a positive culture and make it exceptional.
6. Cultural change is a complicated process
Even business leaders who recognize the value of company culture could feel overpowered by the prospect of trying to alter it. Everyone they employ must be “rewired,” which seems exceedingly tricky. How could they possibly begin?
A systematic strategy makes changing company culture simple and attainable, just like the step-by-step procedures to enhance outcomes in any other aspect of business operations.
Even though this process is straightforward, it’s essential to realize that it must continue if it is to be effective. An organization should adopt a systematic cultural effort as part of a never-ending cycle of change.
7. Investing in company culture is expensive
Most business owners have a list of investments they want to make. For example, they may have plans for structural enhancements, system upgrades, a more extensive staff, or acquisitions. So it’s interesting that culture frequently isn’t listed.
Although most people recognize the value of having a good company culture, many do not believe it justifies a financial commitment. The return on other investments can be calculated relatively quickly, but what about business culture?
The benefits of a high-performing culture are numerous. However, the bottom line will benefit from a program to hone success-enabling behaviors like customer service, responsibility, and increased attention to detail.
However, a high-performing culture helps a business save money and make money.
A strong culture prevents the costs of hiring and training brought on by high turnover.
The comparatively low cost of a culture program outweighs the attrition-related expenditures.
8. HR professionals are solely in charge of company culture
Executives frequently expect HR to maintain a healthy culture and step in as needed to boost it because organizational culture is typically seen as a “people thing.”
But, a company’s culture is not something HR can adjust on or off. Everyday participation in the culture already occurs outside the boundaries of the HR department. Its culture can be influential, sluggish, or downright destructive.
Everyone must cooperate for an organization to see a beneficial culture shift. But, most importantly, leaders need to establish the tone and demonstrate their commitment to it.
Company culture is a guiding light the organization must live and breathe to succeed. It is a way of life, at least in the office, and when everyone is set to live by the culture, you’ll see improvements across the whole board.
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