If you want to build a successful business that people can get behind, you need to develop a culture of people who love the business and enjoy being around one another. In other words, you need to form a magnetic culture.
What is a Team Culture?
“Team culture” is sort of a trendy term. And as with most trendy terms, it’s not always clear what it means. So before going any further, let’s set the record straight.
If you’re looking for an academic definition, “Team culture is the shared passion for achieving a fixed outcome, and the beliefs and values which develop within a group of individuals who have come together to achieve the fixed outcome.”
To put it casually, it’s the shared identity of your team. And contrary to what Silicon Valley job boards may tell you, it’s not ping pong tables, beer on tap, and unlimited vacation days. Culture takes time to create. It’s not a tangible or visible expression that can be erected overnight.
Every team has a culture – but if you want a positive culture, you have to work for it. It’s a direct byproduct of whatever you put into the company. If there’s intentionality behind it, good things will happen. This includes benefits like greater employee satisfaction, lower employee turnover, more productivity, a stronger sense of trust, and more loyalty to the organization.
Simple Ways to Improve Your Team Culture
Enough of the theoretical, big-picture stuff. Let’s dig into the practical. Here are some specific steps you can take to improve your team’s culture:
- Prioritize Communication
You can’t have a healthy team culture if everyone is operating in their own silos. Good communication is a must for healthy businesses. And to foster good communication, you must choose the right platforms and mediums.
From an internal communications perspective, nothing beats SMS. With the right SMS software, you can improve productivity, boost morale, and cultivate a sense of “togetherness.” These platforms are great for sending out updates, gathering employee feedback, coordinating schedules, and notifying staff of emergencies.
- Emphasize Bonding
Think about a job you’ve had in the past that you hated. Now think about a job that you loved. Chances are, you didn’t like the people at the job you hated and you enjoyed spending time with the people at the job you loved. That’s because relationships are a big part of a job.
If you want to improve your team culture, you should prioritize bonding and camaraderie among your team. When people learn how to work together – and genuinely enjoy being around one another – the culture benefits.
- Promote Transparency
According to a 2020 study on engagement in the workplace, highly engaged employees are 2.1-times more likely to report working for a “transparent organization” than those who are actively disengaged. This indicates that trust is really the foundation of any good team culture.
Tall organizational hierarchies are almost always less transparent than flat ones. So if you want to promote transparency in your company, it’s a good idea to flatten things out and remove the rigid barriers between all levels of stakeholders.
- Focus On Your Mission and Values
You can’t create a specific culture if you don’t have a specific mission and set of values to support it. So before you do anything, make sure you’re clear on what you want. This will allow you to communicate the right ideals to your team (both through what you say and the actions that you take).
Your internal mission and values might not necessarily be the same as your boilerplate mission and values that you share with the general public. They’ll certainly be related (and should never be opposed to one another). However, these ideals are specifically focused on your team’s identity.
Give Your Business New Life
Your business already has a culture (whether you’ve been actively involved in establishing it or not). The challenge is to reshape that culture so that it fits your desires, dreams, and objectives. By prioritizing communication, emphasizing bonding, facilitating camaraderie, promoting transparency, and focusing on your mission and values, you’ll end up with a strong culture. It’ll take time and patience, but you’ll eventually get there!